To most, South By Southwest is a giant music hullabaloo in Austin, Texas that takes place in March. And, while that is true, it is also one of the most important meetings for creatives from interactive software design and software development to the film and music industry. SXSW is an idea incubator, and you can look at the topics of some of the speakers to gain a glimpse as to what is important in software and music now and what is coming up just over the horizon.
A cursory look at some of the Interactive industry’s scheduled, and I’m not kidding here, hundreds of talks reveals that Social Media is still a very important, if young, tool to be exploited. Mobile development has a large presence, showcasing new usability design and techniques. Targeted marketing to emerging users like mobilized-teens, aging Baby Boomers, and Millinials / Gen X’ers through online interaction. Buzzwords like gamification and crowdsourcing pop up again and again.
Also, it would seem that the Internet can save the world. Talks like What’s Good for the World Is Good for the Agency, Sparking Real World Action with Social Media, and Design for Social Innovation and Public Good are just some of the more socially conscious topics. It’s the kind of idealism you’d expect from SXSW’s typically young, outside-the-box conventioneers and speakers. Hey and you may even learn some new software development tricks!
Ultimately, it would seem like the future of web development, web design, and marketing is to appear less like a one-way street. Companies will less and less be dictating their marketing and, instead, interactions with customers in social media realms will become more prevalent in order to brand a company or product. Games that sell products, discussions that promote services, and social media events on both mobile and traditional platforms will make up more and more of a company’s outreach to consumers. Great software developers and great agencies know what’s going on in their world, and paying attention to SXSW and other big conventions like it (Usability Week in New York is this is later this month, fyi) is vital. You can be sure we here at Ayoka are keeping tabs on software development trends, especially those happening in our back yard…see you in Austin! .