Whew! The first day of SXSW is over and we our heads are spinning. The three SXSW newbies managed to make it around the city and learned a few things along the way. Here are a few bits of knowledge from Day One!
– From our panel with Director of Social Media Marketing at NBC Sports, we learned that it’s more important to create useful content than to create amazing content every time. Also, that NBC Sports only has FIVE people handling social media!
– Hey! Human informed us that our brains aren’t capable at multitasking, but rather we just “task-switch” rapidly. We are so flooded with constant information that our brains now process differently than they did twenty years ago. We are less likely to remember, engage and interact the more we use technology.
– Did you know that when you are working on something and you see an email enter your inbox the distraction causes your IQ to drop ten points? Crazy, right?
– From Buzzfeed, we learned that the same video performs very differently on different platforms. Key takeaway, create videos that relate to identity on Facebook and informational videos for YouTube.
– The seven reasons people share content are because it is timely, it relates to their identity, it revokes emotion, it starts a conversation, it inspires, it is relatable and it has a global reach.
– During a graphic design and technology panel, we learned that kids cause chaos, they have a small attention span, they can’t always read and that most adults are just like kids (they might be able to read, but they choose not to). When designing, we have to bring it down to their level and make it easily digestible. Turns out, adults like it that way, too.
– With big names like World Wildlife Federation, Virgin Airlines and Change.org, the Brand Advocacy panel was full of incredible info. “Know your audience. Run fast. Take risks. Have fun. Thank your supporters.” and “When everything else fails, getting a little cheeky helps” were two insightful notes from the PR coordinator for Virgin Airlines.
– Test your content before you pay to advertise it. You want to make sure people like your content before pay to promote it. Otherwise, what’s the point?
– Dedicate your team to the content that the audience wants. Learn how to aggregate from your fans. They create content they care about; therefore it’s good content.
– Great content will get discovered. You don’t have to worry about media now because people will search for the content they want and decide for themselves if they can trust it. They care less about where the content comes from, but rather what it is.
– From social media gurus who manage the accounts of the world’s political leaders, we learned that even if you are the leader of the free world, content is still king. Whether you have 500 followers or 50 million followers, you need to be posting and sharing content that engages your audience and encourages conversation to avoid losing their attention.
– Thrillist’s founder and CEO, Ben Lerer, shared his thoughts on the future of media. The days of big media corporations controlling the creation and distribution of content are over. Thanks to the democratization of media, the control of content creation and distribution now belongs to anyone and everyone with access to the internet, which drastically impacts where brands spend their advertising dollars. The future of media, according to Ben, includes a world where media companies and retail companies are combined under one roof as media companies find a way to directly monetize users by partnering with brands rather than simply promoting them.
We had an amazing first day and can’t wait to learn even more throughout the weekend. Be sure to follow along with us on Twitter and Instagram!
<3 SXSW Newbies-
Ahna, Ashley and Kaitlyn