Ok boys and girls, its that time again. What has become for many the annual migration to Austin, TX to escape from the office for a few days to catch up with old friends while making new ones over great conversations that always start and end at the intersection of science and art.
SXSW Interactive over the past 5 years as evolved to become the dominate force in the U.S. of bringing creative thinkers across technology, design and marketing. We have seen the likes of Facebook, Twitter and FourSquare ‘be the next hot thing’ only to really wait another year or so before truly hitting hockey stick trajectories of use and adoption. Last year specifically we saw FourSquare pull away from the pack and GroupMe dominate the on-going theme that group texting and sharing hit mainstream.
As I look out over the past year combining that with the onslaut of startup releases prior to this years festival, a few key trends emerge from my vantage point before even setting foot on Congress Street. Here we go:
People Discovery Via Apps
With releases of Highlight, Glancee, Sonar, Kismet and Ban.jo. Not only will these four duke it out for adoption and scale but it would seem that the VC crowd is all-in for this trend so look for continued entrances and funding to follow. My hunch is that while I might use these services every once-in-a-while, but I think I will keep my settings private for awhile. It is bad enough when people stock you based on FourSquare check-ins.
I suspect Content Marketing will be even a more bastardized term than social media in the coming few years. It is clear from the likes of not only our clients at Empower but heavy hitters like P&G and Coke have already signaled that content marketing (publishing and distribution) is going to be a huge priority. The only point I would like to make is that when hasn’t content mattered or been the number one priority? I think if you survey agencies you would see that we have been arguing this since the early days of Google but clients didn’t care. We weren’t calling it content marketing but that is exactly what we were pushing. Now that Google’s best the farm on social search they in turn have forced brands to change their focus. I think this is a positive evolution for brands and their agency partners that serve them and the ultimate winner is the consumer but it is going to be just sad that we have to add another buzzword to our vocabulary.
Look for more posting from me during and after SXSW!
In Austin for the festivities? You can track me down via @drewmckenzie