SXSW 2015 – A brief overview about what we found interesting

Eleftherios aka Lefti had the opportunity to fly to Austin, Texas, for SXSW 2015. It was his 3rd time in the last 4 years. This time he was part of a delegation representing the State of Baden-Wuerttemberg along with 9 more companies/startups. The beautiful thing about SXSW besides tons of great sessions to attend is that you can meet all important tech people in one place. Everybody is an open state and in a good mood. It’s easy to get into a conversation – no matter if you’re standing in line to pick up your badge or by saying hi to your neighbour sitting next to you in one of the kick-ass session or even while dancing at one of the numerous parties taking place. It’s also great to meet fellows again and spend some time together. You can get some impression on our Facebook page 😉

But let’s get to the core of this post which is to present to you Lefti’s list of the hottest stuff at this year’s event: 

Topics/Trends to keep on your list in the upcoming months and years:

  • From Second Screen to Mobile First to Mobile-only: According to the experts at SXSW mobile is not only here to stay, but will play a even more important role in the upcoming years. Some predictions state that there will be consumers who will experience the web from their mobile device only. In this case go mobile or die!
  • Big Data: We all have heard this over and over again. That’s why you probably have already established tools (e.g. monitoring. alerts, etc. ) to listen to what’s going on in the web when it comes to terms and discussions which affect your market. However, it becomes even more clear this year that the successful players are those who know how to use data to improve their services and products and event content. You need to become a data-driven company – at least if you want to lead the game! See below the example of Buzzfeed.
  • Internet of things: Another term which has been around for quite some time. Everything will be connected: Your car, fridge, heating, even your fitness activities. Get ready for some a data explosion and more and more players who will offer services/products around this interesting phenomenon. Which role can IoI play in your specific industry?
  • New ways of collaboration: What we are also seeing is that even the way we collaborate is changing fast. Why shouldn’t the way we communicate privately not spill over into the business environment? There have been a lot of startups at SXSW who are trying to change the way we work together. A lot of them are more or less copy cats of the huge success: slack. It became the fastest growing software company ever and reached a billion dollar evaluation in the speed of light. Obviously, they are not alone. There are other players in this game, too.

3 hottest players right now according to Lefti: 

  1. Yik Yak: This app allows hyper local and yet anonymous communication by combining geo-fencing, messaging and other functionalities within their app. They started in schools and spread all over the US. This could be a game-changer and danger to other players, e.g. Twitter, when it comes to breaking the news
  2. Meerkat (vs. Periscope): Meerkat is a personal live streaming service and was THE most discussed new startup during this year’s event. The buzz had its effect. Not only did they receive a significant funding, but they also have a very prominent competitor now. Twitter bought Periscope to do the exact same thing. Another proof of how Twitter operates. Remember twitpic and alikes? I think Twitter does not get that by doing this they are slowly isolating themselves from the developer and startup community which could build products around their platform.
  3. Buzzfeed: Buzzfeed is around for a couple of years. However, it is impressive to see how they slowly become a media empire generating a lot of buzz with millions, pardon, BILLIONS of impressions with their content. What is highly interesting is that they follow a decentralised strategy distributing their content on other platforms, e.g. Facebook, Pinterest, Twitter, etc.  and analysing very carefully what works and what not. They have built their own secret sauce about how great and viral content looks and works. Definitely a company and example to f0llow when it comes to content marketing.

Did Lefti miss something important? What did you like most at SXSW 2015. Please comment!

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