Tag Archives: Austin

Weekly Reads – South By Southwest Interactive Edition


Two CenterTable team members, 5 days, 29 caffeinated beverages and 107,855 combined steps. Jim and Carissa took South By Southwest Interactive (SXSWi) conference by storm last week and have plenty to share in its wake.

If you were suffering from a major case of FOMO (Fear Of Missing Out) about SXSWi, you were not alone! That’s why Jim and Carissa made it a priority to chronicle their entire week in Austin – including everything from the best sessions all the way down to the best libations – on the GroundFloor Media & CenterTable blog! Check it out! Read more after the jump…

CenterTable @ SXSW 2017: Monday Sessions


Art and inspiration are everywhere at SXSW.

The fourth day of South by: When sleep deprivation and too many creative thoughts in your head from the previous three days starts to cloud everything. But the sun came out today and we had an impressive lineup of speakers. Here are our top takeaways from Monday at SXSW 2017:

Jim’s Take:

  • I attended a wide variety of sessions today, the first being “Blending Leadership: Online and Offline,” where presenter Reshan Richards reviewed six pillars of leadership traits from his book. From a professional development standpoint, the main takeaway for me was, “Once you’ve become more efficient and find yourself with an extra 30 minutes or hour in your day, be intentional about how you fill that time. Don’t cram it with busy work. Rather, spend it on something you’d hoped to do from an aspirational standpoint.”

Read more after the jump…

CenterTable @ SXSW 2017: Saturday Sessions

Tons of great info on Saturday - including some audience targeting from Antiques Roadshow

Tons of great info on Saturday – including some audience targeting from Antiques Roadshow

It was a rainy day in Austin, but that didn’t slow the super strong lineup of speakers and events on a Saturday. Here are the most memorable takeaways from Day 2 of SXSW 2017:

Jim’s Take:

  • My first session of the day included representatives from Major League Baseball and the WWE discussing the future of providing content direct to consumers. It was interesting to hear how large brands are constantly working to push streaming/live content to their audiences, and how the target is constantly evolving based on audience needs. The most interesting comment was how consumers have built-in expectations about pricing and flexibility of the packages based on how they currently pay for Netflix or Hulu. The takeaway is knowing your audience and what their expectations are before working on a model that doesn’t meet their needs and, one that ultimately will fail because your customer’s expectations don’t align.

Read more after the jump…

CenterTable @ SXSW 2017: Friday Favorites

The sights, the sounds, the smells…the free stuff! Here’s our rundown of favorite intangibles from Friday at SXSW 2017.

Shrimp and Grits, Moonshine-style

Shrimp and Grits, Moonshine-style


Its hard to pass up Lambert’s BBQ from our first night in town for this category, but the shrimp and grits, seared rainbow trout and kale and bacon dip at Moonshine completely blew us away.


Its been somewhat of a “Tour de Old Fashioned” for Jim so far. And Lambert’s offering was as smooth as they come.







Grab Bag:

Hey…I recognize that sticker!







“I’m here because I love the Internet – the same reason why you’re here!” ~ A street performer getting down to Sisqo


The Los Pollos Hermanos pop-up restaurant from the TV show Better Call Saul.

The Los Pollos Hermanos pop-up restaurant from the TV show Better Call Saul.

Celebrity-ish Sighting:

The Los Pollos Hermanos is the best chicken in Albuquerque…and now in Austin. #BetterCallSaul






Through the Lens:

Live music at Stubb's, and Austin stronghold.

Live music at Stubb’s, and Austin stronghold.













Number of Steps Taken:

Jim -12,865. Carissa – 11,562.

Hours of Sleep:

Jim – 5.5. Carissa – 6.5

Caffeinated Beverages Consumed:

Jim – 3. Carissa – 1.

CenterTable @ SXSW 2017: Friday Sessions

Noor Tagouri speaking at SXSWi 2017

Noor Tagouri speaking at SXSWi 2017

The buzz and anxiety of the first sessions at South by Southwest (SXSW) are palpable. And its easy to see some of the broader themes of SXSW 2017 rise to the surface: leadership in times of adversity, using the technologies we have at our fingertips to solve everyday problems and the rise of chatbots were some of the front runners. Here are our highlights from Friday at SXSW: Read more after the jump…

CenterTable @ SXSW: 2017 Preview

Hopefully we'll provide enough content to make it feel like you're in Austin.

Hopefully we’ll provide enough content to make it feel like you’re in Austin.

The annual pilgrimage to Austin is upon us this week, and once again GroundFloor Media and CenterTable will be bringing you the sights and sounds of the South by Southwest Interactive (SXSWi) conference! Beginning Thursday, March 9 and continuing through Tuesday, March 14 Carissa McCabe and I will be hitting up as many sessions, brand activations, concerts, product releases, networking events and Bar-b-ques as possible, and reporting back here on the GFM/CenterTable blog as well as a variety of social platforms.

Read more after the jump…

GFM @SXSWi 2016: Friday’s Sessions

Day one of South by Southwest was wet and rainy but the first set of sessions still brought an energy and excitement that was amplified by the presence of President Obama. While the GFM team wasn’t chosen to see him there were still some great, unique sessions to see.

Carissa’s Take: PhotoArk

  • Based on my personal history with and love for animals, I couldn’t have picked a better way to start my first day at SXSWi than with a talk from Joel Sartore from National Geographic’s Photo Ark Of course, I loved learning about Joe’s work and the highly endangered animals he photographs, but as a parent I was particularly intrigued by his observation that our kids don’t get outside as much as we used to. As a result, they are less connected to nature and, when it comes to endangered species, have less reason to care about saving them than – perhaps – older generations do. This is a fascinating intersection of “real life” and social media. While I wish everyone could have the experiences I’ve had of touching an okapi’s unbelievably soft fur or holding a bottle for a baby black rhino, the truth is that most people will never have that experience in real life. Thus, leveraging National Geographic’s highly visual social media properties like Facebook and Instagram, for example, sharing photos and stories and statistics over social media may be the only way to ever inspire them to step up and make a difference. The team talked about their social media approach of fostering curiosity while making content accessible and fun, and they emphasized their filters of making content timely, relatable and relevant. I loved the nod to our own Platform POV® process. It feels pretty good to be in line with National Geographic!

Read more after the jump…

Sunday Favorites: GFM @ SXSW

Three days down, two more to go. This is when people start to move into “napping in between sessions” mode, so Jon and I will do our best to continue bringing highlights from Austin to life on the GFM blog! Here are some of our favorites from Sunday, admittedly, we were a little short on the food and drink, but made up for it with some great sightings, music and brand activations. Enjoy!

Read more after the jump…

GFM @ SXSWi: Tuesday’s Sessions

Jon and I were only able to make it to a couple of sessions before making our way to the airport and back to Denver. We’ve already discussed some overarching themes for the entire conference of “engineering content,” “openness to doing things differently” and “collaboration” – which we’ll discuss more in length during our April 10th SXSWi Denver Download. Until then, here are our takeaways from the final day of South By:

Jim’s Take:

  • Both sessions I attended today focused solely on creativity, and namely, how to inject creativity in to your work at all times. In “Inside the Bubbleverse: Art vs. Branding” the panelists discussed the differences between art and branding, and more importantly, where and how they intersect. Experiential marketing was a theme and led to this quote, which I think is spot on for marketers, “Tell me and I may forget. Show me and I may remember. Inovlve me and I’ll understand.”
  • Read more after the jump…

GFM @ SXSWi: Monday Favorites

The transition from “hipster tech” to “hipster band member” seemed to come a day early this year. Lots of lines for music wristbands, an increased amount of black denim and skinny jeans, and the bars opening earlier (with live music) than they were on the weekend. Here are our favorites from Monday at SXSWi:

imageNomNom: There isn’t a shortage of really great food trucks in Austin, so when we saw that Goro & Gun was serving up lobster risotto, we had to see if a food truck can possibly make good risotto. We learned quickly that they can, and they can do it really well.

Libations: We caught up with our friends/clients at Door to Door Organics over happy hour at Peche, which consistently has some of the best cocktails in Austin. We recommend the Sazerac or Vieux Carre – you can’t go wrong with either.

photo 2Celebrity-ish Sighting: You never know who you might see at the historic Driskill Hotel. Case in point, five minutes after running into author Brian Solis walking up the stairs, Robert Duvall stepped out onto the balcony with Jim.

Grab Bag: If you haven’t heard more than what’s on the radio from musician Aloe Blacc, you should give him a listen. He wow’d the crowd at a GSD&M private party on Monday night.

Free Stuff Rules: We talk quite a bit about the Samsung Blogger Lounge, but for good reason: Free coffee each and every day is a more than welcome perk…especially after four days of South By.

Overheard: “Given the choice between the Spotify House line and anything, choose anything” –An attendee upon seeing the lengthy line at the Spotify House

Through the Lens:


Number of Steps Taken: 17,000 (pretty sure that’s a record)

Hours of Sleep: Jim: 5.5. Jon: 5.5.

Caffeinated Beverages Consumed: Jim: 5 (and some kind of energy shot). Jon: 7.

~ Jim and Jon