March 16, 2017

MEC@SXSW 2017: Trends, Takeaways & Big Announcements

Wondered what the highlights of this year’s SXSW Interactive Festival at Austin, Texas were? The team from MEC reports that looking at SXSW 2017 overall and its three festivals – Interactive, Music, Film – there was noticeably fewer sponsored events from brands and more opportunity for real engagement this year.

 For example, Samsung and Airbnb did not return and Spotify scaled down its overall presence, much in part to increasing challenges to secure permits, rising costs and, frankly, it becoming harder to break through the clutter. 

There appears to be an emphasis on private, curated events targeted at specific attendees and influencers – a larger trend the MEC team is seeing in marketing overall.

“Call it a return to SXSWi as a conference, or simply an immersive experience of ideas, but is no doubting that attendees are no longer there for the swag, but for real dialogue and decision-making.”

Check out the key trends and takeaways in their presentation [PDF] here.

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