South by Southwest Interactive festival is one of the largest technology events of the year. Over 6500 registrants meet to discuss web technologies and the communities those technologies are meant to support. The registrants are a mix of technologists, bloggers, podcasters, social media marketers, PR folks, designers and developers, all of whom descend upon Austin, Texas, for five days.
The festival offers many lessons, tips and tricks, best practices and predictions for the future.
Below are 5 Lessons I Learned at SXSWi.
1. Have good shoes. Zappos.com is "Powered by Service."
Zappos.com sees extraordinary customer as its norm. CEO Tony Hsieh understands that to succeed online, Zappos has to compete with the offline retail environment where customers try shoes on. As a result, Zappos offers free shipping and free return shipping for all its products.
In Tony Hsieh's opening remarks, he reveals how good deeds such as free shipping can help you leverage the power of your audience to massively extend your brand.
Listen to a podcast of Tony Hsieh's opening remarks at SXSWi.
2. Libre is different than gratis. Chris Anderson gives it away.
Guy Kawasaki's interview with Chris Anderson helps set the record straight on some of the notions in Anderson's upcoming book FREE. One of the basic premises is that free as in "gratis–no price" is different than free as in "libre–freedom."