On Friday a giant spectacle begins in Austin, Texas.
It’s South by Southwest (SXSW). You’ve probably heard about it, but without a trip to the conference it’s hard to understand how big it is.
Over +/-14 days, Austin gets bombarded with +/-50,000 people in the interactive, music, film, comedy and education industries. It’s huge. It’s multifaceted. It’s Austin’s annual Super Bowl.
We’re most interested in the interactive portion of the conference at Cuberis and every year the interactive portion gets bigger: in 2008 there were 9,000 attendees, in 2013 SXSW the Interactive portion of the conference had 30,621 paying attendees. There are thousands of official and nonofficial events so it’s hard to get an idea of exactly how many people flock to Austin for the conference.
The SXSW Economic Impact Report estimates Austin made about $218.2 million dollars on SXSW in 2013!! It is the highest revenue-producing event for the Austin economy and it put Austin on the international map. In fact, it’s so big you can’t really understand it until you look at the economic impact it has on Austin.
Most of the attendees have an entrepreneurial spirit. They’ve got an idea they want to announce/get feedback on/get inspired to finish. The city is full of inspiration and lively conversation often fueled by the tiniest bit of alcohol and lack of sleep. It’s a spectacle.
Cuberis is excited to be a year-round contributor to the SXSW community; Alisa and I are judges for the interactive awards and we all seek out SXSW-related brands/websites/conferences for inspiration. We believe SXSW it is, hands down, the best place to go for inspiration.
I’m a frequent attendee and this year Alisa and Chris are graciously letting me take over the reigns of the Cuberis Twitter feed while I am at SXSW (March 6 – 12). Stay tuned to Twitter.com/Cuberis for some of the highlights from the conference as they unfold.