GroundFloor Media & CenterTable Blog

In our final SXSW 2021 Virtual Recap, Jon Woods and Jim Licko discuss virtual worlds and how Gen Z doesn’t differentiate between online friends and IRL friends, as well as where the future of content is headed, which of course includes TikTok (and a great story about an Arby’s menu board). While the SXSW Interactive experience could never be the same as it is down in Austin, kudos to those involved with technology solutions and content planning in this virtual year – the content was every bit as good as it continues to be each year.

Additional information about the sessions we discussed:

  • We talked about Minecraft and Facebook Reality Labs (including Facebooks forthcoming virtual world Horizon) and how the virtual world experience is focused on some key user experience factors centered on a strong, positive relationship – positivity, consistency & vulnerability
  • Jon also spoke to stock footage company Story Blocks and what they’re doing to build more diversity in the stock photos and videos that we have at our fingertips.
  • Jon also talked about how Arby’s capitalized (in a very strategic way) on one individual’s funny story about buying a TV and having it actually be a stolen Arby’s menu board.
  • In a session titled “Recommitment to the Consumer” Jim covered how Pepsi Co. has shifted to treating its marketing as a social statement in and of itself, and how truly understanding your consumer (rather than just marketing to them) is the key to success moving forward.
  • In a Keynote Address, Stacey Abrams continued the “Recommitment to the Consumer” concept (among other insights) saying, “You have to meet people where they are, not where you want them to be.”
  • In a “Future of Cities” session we (re) learned that parking is the largest land use in nearly any American city, and one of the worst uses of our land at that. Recently, some cities like City of Los Angeles have started implementing Parking Districts as a move toward a solution.

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