SXSW 2022 Recap
A successful year back in-person.
Perhaps no Austin event is more hotly anticipated than the annual SXSW Conference and Festivals, held for 10 days in March. However, this year’s event was particularly special, as it hadn’t been held in person since 2019. And it didn’t disappoint!
Held at the Austin Convention Center and in various venues around town, the world-renowned SXSW draws an international audience. Attendees can join in sessions led by tech thought leaders, watch movie screenings and world premieres with noted filmmakers, see performances by up-and-coming musicians, explore cutting-edge technology in the SXSW Creative Industries Exhibition, and even catch a weeklong comedy festival.
The very nature of SXSW is collaborative and experiential, so it was important to keep safety top of mind while engaging attendees. SXSW approached its 2022 event as a hybrid experience, offering an online component that helped draw in those who could not attend in person, as well as benefit attendees who missed an event or conference but had the option to view it later on-demand.
SXSW. Credit Aaron Rogosin.
EXCITING SPONSOR ACTIVATIONS
But there was still plenty of IRL networking opportunities and sponsor activations. Highlights included HBO Max’s invite-only event to promote its new series DMZ, which featured a New York City subway station theme that incorporated live DJ sets, vibrant street art and the opportunity to get inked by a tattoo artist. The Samsung Galaxy x Billboard House, set up at Smash ATX, featured creator-focused activations that promoted the key features of Samsung’s latest phone, in addition to offering programs that included panels with topics like Feminism in Rock. Austin-based Dell Technologies presented its staple #DellExperience lounge, which featured live music, immersive installations, and stories of startups and new technologies to inspire entrepreneurs and artists.
SXSW. Credit Miguel Esparza.
SXSW is known for presenting a dazzling array of conference tracks that focus on the most important breakthroughs in technology, film, culture, media and music. The belief is that the most unexpected discoveries happen when diverse topics and people come together. Inspiring featured speakers included Grammy Award-winning singer Lizzo, data scientist and Facebook whistleblower Frances Haugen, and U.S. Surgeon General Dr. Vivek Murthy. And although SXSW is known for covering the trendiest of topics in its sessions, there is a conscious effort to balance the wow factor with practical information that attendees can actually use both on the job and in their daily lives.
On the heels of its wildly successful 2022 event, planning is already underway for the 2023 SXSW Conference & Festivals, to be held March 10-19 both in person in Austin and online. Don’t miss it!