Archive for the 'DN3 Dailies' Category

Saturday, March 15



Quote of the Day : Leigh-Anne Brown
No one could walk down 6th St. without seeing one of these guys, the Segway Fleet advertising themselves by silently zooming down the street. Before she got away, I was able to catch up to Leigh-Anne for her opinions about branding at SXSW.

What are you excited about this year?

I’m excited about a lot of music, and I’m also really happy for the city of Austin. SXSW is a booming week for the city. It’s great to see visitors enjoying our great food, real estate, and music scene.

What products have you seen so far?

Nothing has really caught my eye, but I’ve seen posters for Bud Light and the Flatstock Conference. But that’s not to say it doesn’t work to advertise downtown. It let’s people get really creative and get to the right people.

Do you think street marketing works?

I do think it works. It lets marketers do almost anything to get their product out there. I think the street teams handing out free stuff are great!

If you attend a branded party, are you more likely to use the product?

If I go to a branded party and I don’t already know about the brand, then I’m more likely to do research to find out more about it. Our Segways also allow companies to put a small ad on the front of it, that way the brand gets a lot of exposure from the person driving it around town.


Daily Namedrop: Pownce

Here’s another online tool that I hadn’t heard of before (and if these postcards hadn’t been on top of the promo materials mountain I might not have heard of it). This is Pownce, a program you can download to your computer (Windows and Mac) that functions a little like AOL’s Instant Messenger. Rather than focusing on a chat feature though, Pownce enables users to send files, events, messages, and links to their friends through the downloadable (and theme customizable) program. While I normally would use email for sending files and what not, Pownce is something I might consider, if not for the clean and simple design of it.


Daily T Shirt

This must have been the one of the crazier things I saw at SXSW. Looking up from my Lego pile in the Interactive Playpen at the Convention Center, I saw a group of 5 or 6 young girls dressed as punk rock ballerinas (I didn’t get a photo, but check out the Videography from Friday to see what I mean). Investigation was required, especially after they began chanting something which I still can’t decipher at the moment. This New Wave street team was “advertising” for a band. Yes, a band. I’m not sure if this is genius or just plain weird, but it was definitely a conversation starter, if not a spectacle. What sort of ruins the entire effort is, after getting a t-shirt, I can’t make out what the homemade thing even says. As for grading, I’d say A for effort and C for comprehension, girls.


Daily Signage: Dentyne Ice.
While not the most impressive poster of the bunch, I lauded Dentyne for having a campaign effort with synergy. If you missed getting a couple packs of gum from a street team member, too bad. I saw them enough to get 4 or 5 packages of the gum. They also had a heavy presence at The Levi’s Fort (boxes of Dentyne Ice were placed inside the maze of the Fort). So in terms of covering the downtown spread, Dentyne is probably one of the more successful brands this year.


Friday, March 14



Quote of the Day : Rico

Rico is an Austinite and street team member for SoundCheck magazine. His second year at SXSW, he is here for both music and film. Here’s what Rico had to say about the branding of SXSW.

What are you excited about this year?

I’m excited about the bands (Devotcha, Lisps, and Blows) and also all the movies that are showing.

What products have you seen so far?

I’ve seen a lot of Vice posters and posters for energy/fruit drinks, too.

Do you think street marketing works?

Yeah, I think so. So many people are out in the street that it makes for a good place to get out there and really show what you’re promoting.

If you attend a branded party, are you more likely to use the product?

I’m more likely to use the product, yeah. If it’s a good experience, then I definitely am likely to use it.


Daily T Shirt

This was an interesting find. Over at the Convention Center, the movie Second Skin was showing, and I immediately found this guy promoting it. Initially I thought Second Skin might be a cell phone or laptop cover, but he satisfied my curiosity by responding it was just a movie and that he would be happy to have his photo taken with the director, Juan Carlos Piñeiro Escoriaza (left).


Daily Namedrop : Yacht

While I’m pretty sure Yacht has received a ton of blog press already, I feel compelled to add a little bit more. I saw the electro/R&B duo at the Fort/Fader, and it blew my mind. Yacht is entertaining, a great spectacle to watch, and the music is incredible. I was dancing unabashedly. “See a Penny Pick It Up” is a perfect blend of electro beats and great melodies. If you missed their performances at SXSW, put picking up their CD on the top of your list.


Daily Signage : Vitamin Water

What the? When I saw this, I took a couple of double takes. This is the exact same poster style seen a couple of days ago by Fuze beverages! I also saw NOS doing the same thing, but after some research I found that NOS is one of Fuze’s line of drinks. I still like the idea, but if everyone jumps on the band wagon, the tactic will just become boring.

Thursday, March 13



Quote of the Day – Bleu LiverpoolRelocating from Boston, Bleu Liverpool is a music fan and photographer on the side. She’s lived in Austin for seven years, and this is her second year at SXSW, where she’s working as a street team member for Soundcheck magazine. Here’s what she had to say about the branding of SXSW.

What are you excited about this year? All of the music. I’m trying to see Devotcha, Mothfight, Ponytail, Ecstatic Sunshine and other local bands. I really want to support all the great bands that are from Austin. Back in Boston, there’s just way too much pretentiousness there, and that’s one thing I really don’t feel in Austin. Austinites and bands are very amiable.

What products have you seen so far?

I’ve been looking out for a lot of movie and music posters, stuff like In Dreams. I was impressed with the Mess with Texas flyer, too.

Do you think street marketing works?

I think it works in cities like Austin, cities that aren’t so big that people don’t drown it out. Because in larger cities, there is too much information and people can’t concentrate on anything except what they’re doing.

If you attend a branded party, are you more likely to use the product?

Well, I try to avoid parties like that. I’m really don’t approve of the advertising involved.


Daily T-shirt: Ampersand

I can’t find anything out about this t shirt, but I really love it. These guys were placed on 6th St. with nothing surrounding them to tell me more. If anyone knows, definitely let me know.


Daily Signage: YouTube

I’m honestly a little surprised YouTube didn’t have a bigger presence this year. The only presence of theirs that I found was this little flyer that I biked over a couple of times. It would make a lot of sense for YouTube to have some sort of exhibit or outdoor event. The “every song deserves a video” is ripe for SXSW.


Daily Namedrop: John Maus

I love John Maus, and I’m really excited he’s playing quite a few shows this year. He’s comparable to the Los Angeles favorite Ariel Pink, and they have recorded together. If you’re into lo-fi, drowned out psychodelia with smooth electronic beats, tune your ears into him or check him out at The Birdcage on South 1st tonight. (Photo courtesy of Upset the Rhythm)

Wednesday, March 12




Quote of the Day – Stacy Schwartz

Stacy comes to SXSW Music Festival from Minneapolis for the second year in a row. A photographer by trade, she is also an avid music fan. Here’s what Stacy had to say about branding at SXSW.

What are you excited about this year?

I am so excited for the Reveille Magazine party that’s this Saturday at Moltov. It’s a lot of local bands from Minneapolis playing. And really, I’m just excited for the rest of the music that’s playing this week.

What products have you seen so far?Well, I’ve only been here today, but I’ve spotted Fuze, Dell, Microsoft, and a lot of Spin and Paste Magazine stuff. It’s not as bad as last year though.

Do you think street marketing works?

For particular products, yes. By that I mean products that are less known and need the exposure. I’ve seen a lot of Dell marketing, but I don’t think they need the exposure nearly as bad, so I just pass on by it. The people that attend SXSW are the kind of people who are open to new brands and products, so I think they’re more prone to seeing less known brands and trying them out later.

If you attend a branded party, are you more likely to use the product?

Not at all. It depends on who’s playing. I’m only there for the music! If there’s free schwag, that’s cool, but I’m really there to see the live music.


Daily T-shirt

Jeff Tidwell’s shirt caught my eye immediately. The large, bright orange font drew me in, but, from the angle I stood at, I couldn’t see both words. I thought the shirt said ‘Slap me,’ which would be oddly funny. So when I moved in closer to take his photo, I discovered it was a promotional shirt for his friend’s magazine Slap, a skateboarding, art, and culture magazine based in the San Francisco area. Designed any other way, it might not be as noticeable or as surprising as I found it. Props to the designer.


Daily Namedrop: Chirp

As an aspiring art director, I was quite happy to run into Jeff Tidwell who is Creative Director of this fun little program called Chirp. For those who must know who’s messaging you on all of your online social networking profiles, this is what you’ll need and want to invest time in. Chirp is an interactive mega-networking screensaver (right now, it’s only available for Windows, which greatly surprised me). Download it to your computer, install, and voila! When Chirp opens, it displays your latest messages and photos from Facebook, Twitter, and Flickr. It also allows you to interact with it, letting you manage your comments, message replies and friend requests. Combined with Utterz, all I can say is social networking capabilities have improved at the speed of light.


Daily Signage: Dell

Oh, here I go again—knocking on Dell. Two days ago, I said the Dell Lounge looked snobby and didn’t have nearly the charm of the Ikea Lounge. And today, I’ll take another pass at the giant computer corporation by saying that this poster really doesn’t cut it. I swear that I don’t despise the company (I don’t have an Apple at home, and I actually own a Dell monitor), but really, adding a model to your ad is too Bud Light. And I don’t like cheap beer ads for that reason –added to the fact that a lot of their print ads rely on lousy strategy. And this strategy is lousy, too. I don’t really understand the point of the monitor repetition. And I only guess that the monitor is comparable in beauty to the model at the right. What is nice, though, is how simple the design is. But other than that, I wouldn’t quite call this a beautiful strategy.

Tuesday, March 11



Quote of the Day – Matt Gipson.

Returning for the second year from Indianapolis, Matt Gipson spent this SXSW in the Interactive side. But while he got a heavy dose of tech speak, Matt kept a keen ear to the music side of SXSW too. Here’s what Matt had to say about the branding of SXSW.

What are you most excited about this year?

I’m excited for a lot of the bands that are coming through. Had I not gotten sick, I would have made it out to iMeem at Beauty Bar last night to hear Flosstradamus.

What products have you noticed?

The first thing I saw when I got to town was the Monster Truck. I saw Microsoft Silverlight, but I hated it. Then I saw Zappos giving out the panchos. It was a little weird since it’s not anything related to shoes, but I thought it was smart.

Do you think the street marketing is effective?

No, not really. I just notice it for the most part, unless it’s really interactive and involves me somehow.

If you attend a sponsored party, are you more likely to use the product?

Maybe. It depends if the product is new or not. If it’s like iMeem, I just go for a good time. But if it’s something I’ve never used before, then I’m more likely to try it out, especially if it’s a good party.


Daily T-shirt

Zappos didn’t get a lot of press with the panchos today because the sun was out for all to see, and so were the great t-shirts. Today my find was Alan Levine, Vice President of New Media Consortium, an Austin-based non-profit organization. Simple and clean, his t-shirt was from Northern Voice, a blog and media conference in Vancouver. His shirt spoke to the inner desire of small companies, bands, and party goers alike. Who hasn’t been or doesn’t want to be featured on a blog? You could say he got what the shirt asked for.


Daily Namedrop: Bloxes

It definitely pays off to pay attention to your surroundings at the Convention Center. While moseying around, I found a guy waiting at the SXSW merch table with a load of oddly geometric cardboard pieces attached to his bag. Though he escaped getting his photo taken, I did find exactly what he had hooked to his backpack in the Interactive Playpen. I present Bloxes, corrugated, locking pieces of cardboard that lock together into this geometric shape. When folded together, these lightweight and strong Bloxes can fit into other Bloxes, making a coffee table, wall, bench, tunnel and potentially much more. The pristine white and modern shape looks like a lamp sold at either Ikea or Design Within Reach, so I am very excited about them, even if I’m not sure I would get a lot of use out of them.


Daily Signage: Bristol

These small pieces surrounded the Interactive Playpen if you happened to look behind the Legos in the windows. They promote the city of Bristol, England, a place that wants to position itself as very cutting-edge and dynamic. Small and intriguing, each one of these unfolds to poster size, detailing the culture of Bristol. Normally advertisements for cities and countries are spotty, but I thought these ranked much higher than the status quo. These mini-posters say just the right thing to intrigue the SXSW crowd. With SXSW Music starting tomorrow, we might even ask a British band to confirm this.

Note: Remember the Fuze posters from yesterday that were attached to Stop signs? Yeah, they were removed. Attaching anything to traffic signs is apparently illegal.



Monday, March 10



Quote of the Day – Brian MacDonald.

A University of Texas Radio Television and Film school alumni and former Austinite, Brian Macdonald traveled from Vermont to hear all the latest trends and products heralded during the Interactive side of SXSW. Now a web developer, Brian is interested to see the merging of videos to the Internet. Here’s what Brian had to say about the branding of SXSW.

What are you most excited about this year?

The Interactive Tradeshow had a lot of great stuff to see and the panels also had good speakers. I was happy to see the Canadian film commissions here, too.

What products have you noticed?

Mainly, I’ve seen brands I’m already familiar with. I am aware of the Dell Lounge and the Ikea lounge, too. One thing I thought was very smart and very appropriate was seeing Zappos giving away rain ponchos outside. I mean, they are a shoe company, but you know that the marketers thought ahead and made a very useful, very smart product for SXSW.

What do you think of the street marketing?

Well, the lines between marketing and everything else are increasingly blurred. Nothing is really pure anymore. But, we’re not isolated – we are not without brands, so they’re here showing us what they’re all about. Take the Ikea lounge. Everyone wants a place to sit, so why not set up a lounge area and show us how comfortable your products are? It’s what it’s all about.


Daily T-shirt.

Because of the rainy weather most SXSW patrons were bundled in ponchos (mainly the free Zappos ponchos) and jackets, but I was able to find this guy, Varick Rosete, sporting his own company’s t-shirt. nGen is his design company based out of Jacksonville. It’s a cool design and a conversation starter and a good way to get your name out there, especially if you’re hanging around the Austin Convention Center.


Daily Namedrop: Utterz

While talking to Brian, I found out about this website called Utterz. This online tool allows users to post a multi-media blog (or an “utter” as they call it) straight from their mobile phone, from anywhere. Users can “create an utter” by voice, picture, video and text. Friends can even respond using their mobile phone. Users can also opt to update using their computer, which, seems to me, is apparently becoming old fashion. (Note: Fellow blogger MK Woltz found them utterly overexposed at the show).


Daily Signage: Fuze Walk outside the Convention Center and you’ll find these guys, giant cardboard replicas of Fuze bottles placed in points of high foot traffic. While I’m not too keen on the placement (attached to a stop sign just seems silly to me – and possibly illegal), I do love the simplicity. I’d much rather see a simple replica of the bottle than some massive poster with far too many Photoshop effects.


Daily Video

Anything can happen on 6th St during SXSW. For example, a cool young kid with some sweet dance moves.

SXSW is an Austin event. And Door Number 3 is an Austin advertising agency. We're interested in how new ideas in advertising, media and branding will be presented during these 9 quick days. From inside the lecture halls where top specialists present their thoughts, to out on the streets where advertising is put to the test on tens of thousands of festival-goers. We'll be there with the complete coverage, reports, photos, editorials, and perhaps some tricks on how to sneak into a few sweet afterparties.

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