Meeting up at SXSW, the EagleCam saga, and a Face Search Engine
EagleCam is all of us 🦅
South by Southwest (SXSW) is a fantastic event but can be overwhelming. In my 15 years of attending, I’ve spoken four times, helped multiple brands activate and engage at the conference, attended the inaugural SXSW V2V in Las Vegas, and have now served as a member of the SXSW Advisory Board for eight years.
I directly credit SXSW – the connections I’ve made there, and the things I’ve learned – with impacting my career in significant ways. But you have to put a lot in to get a lot out. Here are some tips I put together last year that may be helpful if it’s your first time.
This year, our team at The Social Lights is hosting the fourth annual Minnesota Nice Meetup at Midwest House on Rainey Street in partnership with the kind folks at the Minnesota Interactive Marketing Association (MIMA). The event is Saturday, March 11 and because of capacity restrictions (and those pesky bots that flood these kinds of things), you will need to be on the list to get in. Ping me directly or email firstname.lastname@example.org to get the password! More on the event here.
Not going to Austin? Follow me on Twitter for real-time SXSW updates, and sign up for the TSL newsletter here to get our recap from the event this year.
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Never Stop Translating
This week I had the pleasure of sharing some thoughts with Professor Tim Brunelle’s Minnesota College of Art and Design (MCAD) class on “the future of advertising.” Tim has been chronicling his class this semester on Substack, where you can audit the coursework and curriculum by subscribing to his newsletter.
We talked about the rise of social-first marketing and the mandate to empathize with advertising decision-makers who may be of a different generation – perhaps pining for a simpler, less complex marketing environment. It turns out that strategies for change management and trend translation are key skills I’ve grown and worked on quite significantly in the last decade. To learn quickly (and rise in this business), the next generation of marketers will excel if they walk in the power of their POV and perspective amidst the context of their leaders. This is where the magic of different types of people and different generations comes alive in the future of marketing. Tim wrote a recap you can read here. Thanks for having me, MCAD students!
EagleCam is all of us
Last week there was a blizzard in the Twin Cities, and I tweeted about the Minnesota DNR EagleCam, which showed a nesting bald eagle completely covered in snow that happened to look a lot like myself, my house, and how we were all feeling. The tweet got picked up by the Miami Herald, Kansas City Star, Charlotte Observer, Wichita Eagle, AOL, and a bunch of Spanish language publications, including a little interview they asked me to do. My kids were nonplussed, as usual.
ChatGPT is coming to apps thanks to OpenAI opening up API opportunities. Probably a lot of apps. Here’s an example of how Snapchat is already using it within the app. This is big. It’s time to start experimenting and learning this!
Social media has been a factor in the mustache’s resurgence.
It’s too late for an entire generation who lied about their age to install, but TikTok is finally adding parental controls. Ultimately this is a good move and fairly typical for a social network at TikTok’s life stage to get around to this. Also, it’s late. And while I don’t predict Biden will ban TikTok, I am in favor of our elected officials working to understand and add regulation and consumer privacy controls to social networks. And parents, talk to your kids about social media safety, privacy, and civics.
This is a good tweet:
This is a good story about how the W.W.E. explains what happened to American politics. The concept of “kayfabe” is a great complement to everything I learned from reading Fantasyland by Kurt Andersen back in 2019 (summary here). In order to understand and excel as a modern marketer, you have to continually study the history of culture, even as it’s shifting in real-time. And it’s shifting. Again.
This McKinsey study, How Young People Spend Their Money, found that 6 in 10 Americans under age 25 have completed a purchase on a social media site. And you know that word metaverse? It isn’t a buzzword to them. The metaverse is where Generation A primarily hangs out. They just don’t call it that. Discounting the metaverse as a far-flung or optional next phase of the internet is a short-terminism perspective. Do you know what will help change senior marketing leaders’ minds? Money. So let’s keep following the $$.
🔥 Quick Hits
Tool of the Week: PimEyes - Face Search Engine Reverse Image Search.
YouTube of the Week: Evolution of the Desk.
Insta of the Week: Actual images resembling missteps by AI art generators.
Tweet Thread of the Week: Every American president, but they're all cool and they all sport a mullet.
Snapchat Filter of the Week: This is the way.
TikTok of the Week: The Story of the Frod.
See you on the internet!
Thanks for reading Social Signals by GREG SWAN! Not a subscriber? Here ya go…
Wish I could be there again, Greg. I know the Minnesota Nice Meetup will be fun!