The biggest and arguably, the most energetic and well-known conference in the interactive marketing industry, South by Southwest Interactive, brings together more than 10,000 like-minded professionals to Austin, Texas for five days for the opportunity to share ideas, experiences, and yes ... a good time.
While opening day of the 2011 conference isn't until March 11, preparations to fill the programming slate are well underway. Last week, the SXSW PanelPicker went live. This online voting system gives the public a chance to vote "thumbs up" or "thumbs down" to the more than 2,300 proposals being considered. The voting round is the second round of the process, and accounts for 30% of the decision to accept a proposal (40% is by the advisory boards in the first round, and the remaining 30% is determined by SXSW in the final round).
What does all of this have to do with PR professionals in Minnesota, you ask?
Well, several things ...
First, whether you are attending, or are even aware of the South by Southwest Interactive conference, it's important for PR pros to keep their perspectives broad, and be aware of the trends being presented at conferences such as these.
Second, voting is open to EVERYONE. You don't need to be a past or future attendee, or even an "interactive" professional. You just need to have an opinion and be willing to share it.
Last, but definitely not least, there are some whip-smart folks from right here in your community who are vying for a presentation slot, and they could really use your support.
Are you ready to help get some Minnesotans on the bill of this internationally renowned conference?
To get you started, I've begun to compile a list of Minnesotans with proposals in the PanelPicker:
Note - In order to prevent fraudulent voting, you do need to create an account. It doesn't take long or require a lot of info, and you won't be placed on any mailing lists.
Sheetal Dube, Evantage Consulting
Steve Bendt, Best Buy
(post update, 8/20/2010) "Creative Alternatives: What if we Reinvented Healthcare Today?"
Robert Fabricant, frog design and Doug Powell, Schwartz Powell Design
Nancy Lyons and Meghan Wilker, The Geek Girls Guide
Jennifer Kane, Kane Consulting
(post update 8/26/2010): "Healthy Privacy: Can Health Insurance Companies Be Social?"
Tammy Young, Blue Cross Blue Shield of Minnesota
(post update 8/20/2010) "Human Centered Journalism: Changing news with Design Thinking"
Andrew Haeg, Public Insight Network
John Bernier, Best Buy
Kristina Halvorson, Brain Traffic
(post update, 8/20/2010) "RDFa, Microdata, Microformats: Gateway Drugs to Semantic Web"
Jay Myers, BestBuy.com
Greg Swan, PerfectPorridge.com (Greg also has a proposal for consideration in SXSW Music.)
(post update, 8/23/2010) "The Value of Personal Health Social Networks"
Sona Mehring, CringBridge.org
Fred Beecher, Evantage Consulting
Voting closes at 11:59 p.m. on August 27 - so, be sure to cast your votes before then. What other suggestions do you have? Please feel free to add to this list in the comments.