Published On: Sun, Mar 9th, 2014

SXSW: Spring Break For Geeks

 SXSW by day

 SXSW By Day

SXSW Interactive , celebrates its 21st anniversary this week with a cornucopia of music, film and digital networking. From its humble roots as an indie music retreat, the event has become the de-facto venue for digital validation. SXSW is where Foursquare and Twitter conquered the digerati and Mark Zuckerberg addressed his first prominent conference. Now the event has reached a cross-roads. Bloated from its own success and drowning in a pool of corporate swag, many companies that wallowed in the SXSW limelight opted to stay home this year. Farewell Foursquare, Goodbye GroupMe, Ta-Ta Twitter. Instead of discovering the Next Big Thing, attendees are far more likely to engage with Oreo, Esurance, Doritos or Chevy. Amidst this carnival of hype, energy drinks and ambient noise, I would like to add a few survival tips and introduce the Israeli companies at SXSW. You can meet them at a special dinner, hosted by the Israeli Embassy of the Southwest. Contact [email protected] for additional information.

SXSW by day

SXSW By Day

Tips for Getting Some Sort of ROI from SXSW

1. Stay focused
2. Schedule meetings weeks in advance
3. Attend panels but approach your target BEFORE their session. Most panels are lightly attended
4. Dinners, not parties. You can actually have a conversation
5. Divide and conquer with a “wing man”
6. Follow up with people immediately after each party

sxsw at night

SXSW By Night

SXSW 2014

Hyperactivate (SXSW, better known as “Spring Break for Geeks”, celebrates its 26th anniversary with a cornucopia of music, film and digital networking. From its humble roots as an indie music retreat, the event has become the de-facto venue for digital validation. SXSW is where Foursquare and Twitter broke-out and Mark Zuckerberg addressed his first prominent conference. Now the event has reached a cross-roads. Bloated from its own success and drowning in a pool of corporate swag, many companies that wallowed in the SXSW limelight opted to stay home this year. Farewell Foursquare, Goodbye GroupMe, Ta-Ta Twitter. Instead of discovering the Next Big Thing, attendees are far more likely to engage with Oreo, Esurance, Doritos or Chevy. Amidst this carnival of hype, energy drinks and ambient noise, I would like to add a few survival tips and introduce the Israeli companies at SXSW. You can meet them at a special dinner, hosted by the Israeli Embassy of the Southwest.

SXSW 2012 Night Crowd  John Rogers Flicker

SXSW 2012 Night Crowd / John Rogers Flicker

Israeli companies at SXSW 2014:

Hyperactivate : A turnkey social marketing solutions provider enabling social media followers to amplify brand messages across multiple channels from mobile to online and digital outdoor displays

 Payoneer : Simplifies commerce by removing the limitations of geographical borders and ensuring smooth, cost-effective transactions to and from anywhere

Wondervoice : Hands-free voice assistant helps consumers interact with their favorite apps by responding to voice commands

 Interlude : Platform for video creators to tell “choose your own adventure” interactive stories

 Samba : Combines text and video for an asynchronous video messaging platform that also records the reactions of people watching the videos

 Connesta : Cloud Control Room (CCR) hardware-free SaaS platform that replaces legacy TV control room and vans to significantly lower costs and deliver greater production flexibility

 FiveBlocks : Digital consulting and technology firm analyzing search-results data for managing how brands are perceived online and executing an action plan shaped by data analysis

LoyalBlocks: Loyalty marketing solution for brick and mortar businesses with patented technology that enables automated hand-free punch cards and customer rewards

Yevvo: Free mobile-to-mobile platform to instantly share live HD video with an unlimited number of subscribers’ mobiles

 Conduit: DIY App Maker brings an innovative solution to easily create apps and a quality mobile version of existing websites

 

See y’all at the BBQ!!

 

 

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About the Author

- Levi Shapiro is a Partner in the JIMMI Fund (www.jimmifund.com), working with global tech companies to invest in Israeli start-ups. Concurrently, Mr. Shapiro provides strategic advisory to global technology, media and telecom companies as a Senior Partner at TMT Strategic Advisors. Mr. Shapiro is also an Adjunct Professor in the Media Innovation Lab (http://milab.idc.ac.il) at IDC Herzliya, teaching Digital Media Entrepreneurship, Mobile Marketing and other entrepreneurial courses. He is also the organizer of the Transitioned Media (http://transmedia-conf.com) mHealth Israel (www.mhealthisrael) and MATI- Marketing & Ad:Tech Israel (www.adtechsummit.com) conferences. Mr. Shapiro’s “Unleavened Media” column (http://blogs.jpost.com/content/unleavened-media), about technology and digital media, appears in the Jerusalem Post and is syndicated across other publications. His education includes Tulane (History), Cornell (Asian Studies) and MIT (MBA).

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