Lessons From SXSW

Earlier this month, I had the chance to go to Austin, TX as a member of the SXSW Global Advisory Board for the Accelerator Pitch event. In last weeks' Facebook Live session, I shared my top three takeaways from the conference. 

South By Southwest dedicates itself to helping creative people achieve their goals. Founded in 1987, SXSW is best known for its conference and festivals that celebrate the convergence of the interactive, film, and music industries. 2018 marked the tenth anniversary of the SXSW Accelerator Pitch Event. 50 companies in ten categories, selected from hundreds of applications, receive coaching and then pitch live to a panel of judges and a live audience. 

One of the best parts of taking part of a massive global conference is hearing all of the questions from entrepreneurs from all kinds of startup communities. More often than not, the questions asked to panellists are the same ones we hear every day. And now, I have some fresh perspectives, tools, and resources to provide you. 

In addition to my top takeaways, here are two resources to check out: 

  1. Customer Forces Canvas from Ash Maurya. Getting your brain to shift to focusing on the problem your customer is experiencing away from the solution you want to deliver can be really hard work. Once you make that leap, the Customer Forces Canvas can help you find better problems worth solving. 
  2. Anchor. Yes, Anchor makes it easy to record, edit and publish a podcast. Michael Mingnano, Co-Founder & CEO, did a great job highlighting how the company tests, learns and optimizes based on input from trusted partners like Google - while staying true to its product roadmap and customer-centred approach. Check out its website, landing pages, social media and app store pages - imitation is the highest form of flattery. 

If you're interested in getting feedback on your pitch or want to spend dedicated time on your marketing plans, consider enrolling in our Preflight 3 session starting on April 18. In two-hours, one evening a week, we'll break down all the elements required for a successful launch, investor conversation, and media campaign.