SXSW marketing goes back to the basics

March 21st, 2013

Poster, after poster, after poster. This is exactly what you see when walking up and down the hallways of John Carroll. How effective are the posters? Do they leave a lasting impression?

At the South By Southwest (SXSW) festival that took place last week, companies were restoring to old school marketing strategies and using posters to attract the attention of potential customers. This event is a music, film and trade festival held in Austin, Tex. every year.

SXSW is widely-known for unique marketing trends, innovation and creativity, as well as a glance into up and coming musicians, artists and brands. It was noted that some of the world’s most creative and technologically advanced brands are resorting to using posters, creating a head-to-head competition with other brands.

The posters are seen all over Austin, as the festival takes place at about 100 venues.

MTV promoted the Woodie Awards at SXSW this past week and hired The Syndicate, a guerrilla-marketing agency. Guerrilla marketing is a low-cost, unconventional form of marketing in which flash mobs or graffiti is sometimes used.

The Syndicate’s main goal during SXSW was to restock posters several times a day for MTV, a unique approach to creating a lasting impression on the festival-goers. Poster advertising is one of the most traditional advertising mediums. Amongst all tech entrepreneurs that attended SXSW, they said they’re experiencing “the beginning of the end” for digital agencies.

The idea of the need for digital agencies is decreasing, meaning more brands are resorting to old-school marketing strategies. Such old-school marketings strategies center around the use of traditional posters. The question that comes to mind with such a strategy would be, how effective is poster advertising at SXSW?

Rebekah Campbell, founder and CEO of Posse, a website that allows users to find the favorite shoping and dining places of their social network friends, was pleased with the results of her company’s poster advertising.

At the end of one day at SXSW, she had 1,500 new sign-ups of about 25,000 people who attended the festival.

Information from and was used in this report.

By, Christina Minjares