We’re happy to report that SXSW Interactive and social good are still best buds. In fact, Corporate Social Responsibility (updated to buzzwords like “shared value” and “triple bottom line”) was a big theme.
The CEO of Whole Foods flung about catch phrases like “conscious capitalism.” Bob Garfield talked about how it’s now required for brands to partake in cause marketing to build relationships with consumers (as part of his new book “Can’t Buy Me Like”). Even funny man keynote, Matthew Inman of the Oatmeal, discussed his wildly successful crowdfunding initiatives for the National Wildlife Federation and to build a Tesla museum.
As for visible nonprofit campaigns, you couldn’t miss the 10-foot tall mural of the United States made of trash collected at SXSW by local collage artist Jason Mecier. The collage, sponsored by Keep America Beautiful and Glad, was strategically placed in the highly-trafficked SouthBites food truck plaza. KAB also used the event to launch their new social hub to organize volunteers (www.kabcleanup.org) around their Great American Cleanup. The site encourages you to use #keepamericabeautiful when bragtweeting about how you’re cleaning up your town.
Yet the biggest highlight for HelpsGood was not the TexMex, DeadMau5, Elon Musk or even Al Gore — it was meeting with digitally savvy librarians at the Librarian Meet-Up. We made new friends and planned ahead to ensure the success of our digital marketing efforts for EveryoneOn (Ad Council’s digital literacy campaign).
Proving the popular refrain— SXSW Interactive is all about interacting with people offline.