So this year i visited SXSW for the first time. I went there with a lot of expectation, excitement, enthusiasm, hope, ambition and every other emotion i have in my body and to say i was over blown away is an understatement.
On arriving there the first thing i noticed was the enormity of it, it was biggish in size but the real enormity was in the volume of people and the brands present.
Brands and people were everywhere. Every street corner was occupied with a new piece of activation, food truck or just a bunch of people doing cool stuff.
I soaked this up for a good part of a week and loved every minute of it.
What i did find really interesting was the content that was being discussed. I said to a colleague the other day when they asked me how it was, it was amazing but the content was very strange. Everyone was talking about either A.I. this or Trump that. When i say everyone i mean everyone.
A.I. was across every session in some way shape or form, it is the hottest thing right now but it surely was evident and that's cool.
Trump and the administration discussions were everywhere, most sessions had a element of this either directly discussed or an undertone.
My favourite was listening to Mark Cuban discuss the administration and the disruption it was causing to our industry. Fascinating insights.
The long and the short of all of this was that it really felt like this article is discussing the SXSW was really spending a lot of its time dealing and discussing everything it has created for itself over the previous years. The world has changed significantly, we all are experience the reality of it now, how are we going to move forward and deal with it. These are now our biggest challenges on so many levels
HANGOVERS ARE A fixture of South by Southwest. Free branded booze abounds, turning late nights into too-early mornings filled with product demos and repetitive panels. But determined marketers and wide-eyed founders pitch on through the pain, in the unbridled belief they might just be SXSW’s next breakout star. Or at the very least, its next Meerkat.