SXSW Networking Rocks

As I mentioned in my last post, I am a self-described Technophobe-turned-Technolovah. It’s the social media stuff that I really love. My business partner is the real Techie, (not to take anything away from us power-users.) I am just coming off the high from all the incredible people I met at South by Southwest a few weeks ago!  I can’t remember the last time I got so jazzed about attending a business related conference. While the lectures and panels were organized and structured, it was the impromptu networking where I found the most value. It felt like all the top social media thought leaders, passionate technology lovers, and creative business minds came together to play and I was invited to play too.

The Movers and Shakers at SXSW

I got  to meet the ever polite Darren Rowes of ProBlogger, a great resource for blogging tips. I chatted with Lewis Howes, who has an e-book on advanced strategies on LinkedIn at LinkedIn Marketing. I bumped into David Meerman Scott in the blogger’s lounge, author of  The New Rules of Marketing & PR. I also connected with Brian Clark of CopyBlogger at a TweetUp. In addition, I met up with Becky McCray of Small Biz Survival and Erica Douglass of Erica.Biz. There were hundreds of movers and shakers at SXSW and most of them were incredibly accessible and genuinely engaging.

Vandalism Strikes during SXSW

I had the privilege of interviewing all these bright social media experts, which I had planned on posting the videos here on Hware’s blog site. Unfortunately, my FLIP video camera was stolen from our car while parked near Town Lake before I could transfer the interviews to my computer. I am currently working on rescheduling virtual interviews with all of them.

We waited 4 hours for the Austin Police. They never showed.

The Conversations at SXSW

I also met Guy Kawasaki  of  AllTop, Brian Solis, author of Engage, Erik Qualman, creator of the overwhelmingly popular YouTube video,  SocialNomics, Gary Vaynerchuck of and one of my all-time favorites, Jason Fried of  37 Signals, whose book, Rework, I just finished reading. I attended a “Women Who Love Tech” MeetUp in the Consciousness Lounge and hung out with other Geeky Gals. There were also some fascinating technology startups, whose founders were contagiously energetic and refreshing. I loved the vibe they brought to the conference. One startup that really caught my attention was, a website that tracks trending topics on popular websites. What a wicked marketing tool, I thought. There were also some very cool social networking app companies like FourSquare, which many seemed to be using at SXSW. And, there was NutshellMail, and Foodspotting, which were finalists at the Microsoft Biz Spark Accelerator event.

More Photos of SXSW

I see why SXSW has been described as Burning Man with laptops and toilets. In spite of the misfortune of my FLIP being stolen, I had an incredibly positive experience at SXSW.  Whether it was the parties, MeetUps, TweetUps, hallways, blogger’s lounge, exhibitors show room, or restaurants, there was always someone interesting to meet. At SXSW, you never know when you are going to bump into the CEO of Twitter and strike up a conversation with him (you can read about it on my previous post.) Here are some photos I took from SXSW! I am already looking forward to returning again next year! How bout you? Are you coming? Let’s connect!

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