Today one of the most exciting and dynamic events of the year opens its doors – South By Southwest (SXSW). Launching in 1987 in Austin, Texas, SXSW is an annual series of festivals that focuses primarily on music, film, and media. And its that last festival that we’re most excited about on this blog!
SXSW Interactive is “an incubator of cutting-edge technologies and offers compelling presentations from the brightest minds, networking events hosted by industry leaders, and special programs showcasing the best new websites, video games and start-up ideas.”
Launched nearly 20 years ago, this festival has steadily grown to be probably the biggest of its kind in the world – and easily one of the events the attendees look forward to most.
Just from glancing at the immense schedule of events, seminars, and workshops, you can see that this year will offer something for everyone… literally. It can seem a bit daunting, but one thing that stood out for me was the many sessions focusing on that buzzword of buzzwords, “viral”.
For a many of you (myself included) the topic may have been done to death, but the reality is that it still is the “holy grail” of advertisers, marketers, and communicators. Just look at the Super Bowl ads that have popped up in the last few years. Or, more interestingly, check out the lower budget ads or the non-commercial videos that are have “gone viral” to varying degrees, such as these:
11 144 256 views
2 037 428 views
818 406 views
Is It All Random?
As descriptions of the sessions listed below suggest, the answer seems to be no. There is a science behind it, as well as the need to invest quite a bit of resources to get the job done. So, how do you make your branded content go viral? Here are a select few sessions that deal with this:
If you are not attending the festival, don’t fret. Each session has handily been assigned an official Twitter hashtag for everyone to follow. If that fails, someone is bound to put something up on YouTube or Slideshare in a week’s time or so!
If you are attending… I’m not jealous at all. Nope. Not one bit!