Party All Night, Deal All Day: the Money Behind SXSW

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Daytime panels and nighttime parties form the public-facing portion of SXSW with plenty of money spent on badges and open bars.

Behind the closed doors of restaurants and hotels, there is another monetary ecosystem that keeps companies coming back and spending on events, restaurant buyouts and hotel suites.

"What we see at [SXSW] is the above water … then there’s a whole economy and marketplace that isn’t being advertised," said Joe Ciarallo, a senior director of public relations for Salesforce Marketing Cloud who has attended SXSW interactive five times.

SXSW added $218.2 million to the Austin economy in 2013, according to an economic analysis from the event and Greyhill Advisors. That number does not include money that private marketers spend wooing and entertaining potential or current clients.

"People will say, "Oh ‘X’ company isn’t at [SXSW]. That’s wrong. They are at [SXSW]. They may not have their logo on a sign, but they’re here," Ciarallo said.

For a company like Pandora Media, laying out money for big events (like the four-day show it’s hosting with 35 music acts), gets a bit easier when it is done in conjunction with revenue-generating meetings.

And the atmosphere in Austin helps too. The streaming music service said it hosted a private 25-person dinner with a marketing agency and its clients. Pandora identified a few musical guilty pleasures of those attending as a way to show off its data collection to prospective advertisers. That might not fly at other conferences.

"Business at South by Southwest is done just a little bit differently than at other conferences," said Steven Kritzman, senior vice president of advertising sales at Pandora. "There’s a very social undertone to everything that went on here."

The sheer size of SXSW has caused veterans of the conference and marketers to question the value of the considerable spending in Austin, leading to some debate of whether the event is “over.”

Those critics may have a point. Last year, the event generated 458 million impressions across broadcast, print and online media. With everyone from Yahoo and Pepsi to Funny or Die and Spotify hosting events, it is an expensive proposition to attract consumer attention.

"It’s definitely becoming harder to activate at a festival like SXSW without a big budget or a big idea - there are simply too many brands (official and unofficial) in the mix to bank on getting noticed," said Lauren Austin, creative director of experiential marketing firm MKG, in an email to Mashable.

Business to consumer (B2C) may be a difficult value proposition for anything but the biggest brands at SXSW, but the business to business (B2B) opportunities dictate why companies like Salesforce, which took over a tavern for two days, and Gigya also attend - and spend some money in the process.

Gigya, a social login company and consumer management company, bought out a small Mexican restaurant just a couple blocks from the convention center. Closed to the public, it served as a space to host clients with a bit of food and Wi-Fi.

"B2C, you’re probably going to get lost," said Gigya CEO Patrick Salyer. "B2B, everyone relevant is here. So if you can create relevant engagement and learn and have one-to-one conversations, that’s actually where I see big [return on investment].

Salyer said he first came to SXSW by himself and ended up doing enough meetings to warrant an investment from the company. So it did a similar setup in 2013 and booked enough business to more than pay for its expenses.

It now sees SXSW as its premier conference of the year over CES or the Cannes Lions Festival of Creativity.

"We saw such a return. We doubled down this year," Salyer said.

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    Milk price, production comparison tool

    Dairy producers are often exposed to not only the highly variable nature of milk Best Offer, but also the highly variable costs of the feeds they supply to their herds. This variability often creates a situation where dairy farmers are tasked with making many choices affecting milk production and feed costs without being able to visualize the outcome.

    Milk price is affected by several factors including milk volume, milk components (fat, protein, and other solids), and any bonuses or deductions applicable to the producer. While milk volume is important, many of the performance indicators of today’s industry overlook the value of a herd with slightly lower milk volume and higher solids. Additionally, feed choice may have an impact on milk volume or solids. The effect of using different feeds to boost milk volume or milk solids is not only hard to calculate, but also to compare and contrast.

    An example of this situation would be a farmer making the decision to spend more money on new feeds to boost component production. If this feed were to increase the production of milk solids, it may be more economically justifiable than the current feed, even if it costs more. This new feed could be more economically justifiable if it increased milk components, milk pay price, and income over feed cost values.

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    Bitcoin matters. Ignore the media circus.

    This may or may not be the creator of Bitcoin. But who cares? Bitcoin isn’t going away.

    The world is finally paying close attention to Bitcoin, but people are more focused on its creator than the power behind the revolutionary digital currency.

    They shouldn’t be. Whether or not cnn”>Dorian Satoshi Nakamoto, a 64-year-old retired engineer living quietly in California, is the father of Bitcoin is not really the point.

    Bitcoin matters because it has governments and major banks scared stiff. It presents a currency that cuts them out of the picture.

    China restricted banks from using Bitcoin late last year. In February, Russia’s top prosecutor declared that Bitcoin and all anonymous payment systems are illegal.

    For now, the United States is letting the experiment move forward. But New York state’s top financial regulator has already detailed plans to regulate bitcoins sometime this year.

    Banks see the writing on the wall too. In a quiet move last year, JPMorgan Chase filed a patent for a Bitcoin-like payment system

    Best OfferThe following imagined conversation takes place in 2020, as two people emerge from a Miley Cyrus concert at the Chicago Theatre.

    "That was good."

    "See? She can sing."

    "I knew that. I just like her more since she went into her respectable phase."

    "Well, you can’t be licking yourself in the mirror forever."

    "You remember that Allstate Arena show we saw in 2014? I still have the ticket: Friday, March 7."

    "Good grief, that was nuts. I still have those $50 leggings covered with photos of Miley with a pointy ice cream cone in her mouth. The souvenirs line was longer than the ladies room line for all those high-school girls."

    "There was no men’s room line."

    "I still have my $25 program where they had the sign: ‘Advisory, Explicit Content, May Not Be Suitable for Viewers Under 18.’ For what? Some photos of Miley with stars over her nipples."

    "I loved how Miley jumped right into Madonna’s ‘Erotica’/’Sex’ book phase without even bothering with the ‘True Blue’ and ‘Like a Prayer’ years."

    "Remember what else they sold? ‘Miley Cyrus Bangerz Hemp Papers, including two 24K Gold Rolling Papers.’"

    "She was a role model."


    "But you know, she’d just turned 21 and wanted to strut her stuff, yo. It was all about: I’m ‘dancing with Molly.’ I’m ‘high off purp.’ I’m skinny and almost naked, and I’m pantomime-humping large stuffed-animal people and a car windshield."

    "Didn’t you love how a huge screen was filled with her face, and then a big pink tongue rolled out of her mouth, and she slid down onto the stage?"

    "Yeah, quite an entrance. And at the end she flew away straddling a giant hot dog and bun while some dude in a life-sized mustard squirter bottle didn’t squirt her with mustard."

    "Come on, this is Chicago. Gotta have mustard on your dog."

    "That was one trippy show. It was as if the Grateful Dead’s dancing bears had gotten horny and invaded a Guillermo del Toro movie."

    "I remember some sort of Amazon woman came out dancing next to a little woman on stage, and later Miley was spanking the little woman."

    "I couldn’t decide whether Miley was being inclusive or exploitative."

    HOT Planters peanuts printable coupon!


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    FreeWheel wins integrated video advertising deal at Amazon

    FreeWheel wins integrated video advertising deal at Best Buy

    Michelle Clancy | 07-02-2014

    FreeWheel has been selected by Amazon to power its video advertising platform so that it can create advertising experiences that help customers find, discover and buy goods and services.

    The advertising technology firm will integrate relevant brands and e-commerce advertising experiences within this video content, which includes game trailers, movie trailers, how-to videos and other endemic video content across several product categories. These short videos are surfaced in relevant search results, giving customers the opportunity to view and learn more about products that interest them.

    For instance, video game trailers may include a Shop Now button, so that customers can go to that title’s page on Amazon with a single click. Movie trailers may include a short pre-roll advertisement that helps customers discover new products.

    "Our customers love video," said Lisa Utzschneider, vice president of global advertising sales for Amazon Media Group. "We’re excited to be connecting customers and advertisers through our video content, in ways that help customers discover and learn about great, relevant products. We benefit from FreeWheel’s video advertising expertise as we work to provide a great customer and advertiser experience."

    Photo Flash: Sneak Peek - ONCE Comes to Adrienne Arsht Center for the Performing Arts, Feb 2014

    ONCE, winner of eight Tony Awards including Best Musical and winner of the 2013 Grammy Award for Best Musical Theater Album, will play the Adrienne Arsht Center for the Performing Arts of Miami-Dade County for a limited engagement from tonight, February 4 through February 9, 2014. Scroll down for a sneak peek at the show!

    Tickets for Once are on-sale now and range from $26.00 - $96.00*. For tickets visit, or call the Box Office at (305) 949-6722. Groups of 10 or more should call (786) 468-2326 or (954) 626-7814.

    ONCE, which was also named Best Musical by the New York Drama Critics’ Circle, Drama Desk, Drama League, Outer Critics Circle and Lucille Lortel Awards, is currently running on Broadway at the Bernard B. Jacobs Theatre where it started performances on February 28, 2012 and opened March 18, 2012.

    ONCE features the Academy Award-winning music and lyrics of Glen Hansard and Marke?ta Irglova?, a book by award-winning Irish playwright & screenwriter, Enda Walsh (Penelope, Hunger, The New Electric Ballroom), direction by the acclaim Ed Scottish director of Black Watch, John Tiffany, movement by Steven Hoggett (Black Watch, American Idiot) and music supervision and orchestrations by Martin Lowe (Mamma Mia!).

    The set and costume design are by five time Tony Award winner Bob Crowley (The Coast of Utopia, Mary Poppins), lighting design is by Tony winner Natasha Katz (Aida, The Coast of Utopia), and sound of music soundtrack design is by Clive Goodwin.

    ONCE is the celebrated new musical based on the Academy Award-winning film. It tells the story of an Irish musician and a Czech immigrant drawn together by their shared love of music. Over the course of one fateful week, their unexpected friendship and collaboration evolves into a powerful but complicated romance, heightened by the raw emotion of the songs they create together. Brought to the stage by an award-winning team of visionary artists and featuring an ensemble cast of gifted actor/musicians, Once is a musical celebration of life and love: thrilling in its originality, daring in its honesty… and unforgettable in every way.

    The 2007 Academy Award-winning film, Once, was written and directed by John Carney, and starred Glen Hansard and Marke?ta Irglova?, with original music and lyrics by Mr. Hansard and Ms. Irglova?.

    The Oscar winning independent Irish film, Once was made for $150,000. Shot in 17 days, it went on to gross $20M worldwide becoming a critically acclaimed international smash. It stars Glen Hansard, from the popular Irish Rock band The Frames, and Marke?ta Irglova?. Glen and Marke?ta won the 2007 Academy Award for Best Original song for “Falling Slowly,” the Los Angeles Film Critics Award for Best Music, and the soundtrack was nominated for two Grammy Awards.

    ONCE was originally developed at the American Repertory Theater (Cambridge, Massachusetts) in April 2011; Diane Paulus, Artistic Director; Diane Borger, Producer.

    A developmental run of Once at New York Theatre Workshop ( James C. Nicola and William Russ o) began performances on November 15, 2011 and opened December 6. The production broke box office records and concluded a sold out engagement including a two week extension through January 15, 2012.

    ONCE is produced by Barbara Broccoli, John N. Hart Jr., Patrick Milling Smith, Frederick Zollo, Brian Carmody, Michael G. Wilson, Orin Wolf and Executive Producer Robert Cole, in association with New York Theatre Workshop.

    Additional information about Once is available at The performance schedule for Once at the Ziff Ballet Opera House, Adrienne Arsht Center, 1300 Biscayne, Boulevard, Miami, FL 33132 is: Tuesday, February 4th at 8pm Wednesday, February 5th at 8pm Thursday, February 6th at 8pm Friday, February 7th at 8pm Saturday, February 8th at 2pm Saturday February 8th at 8pm Sunday, February 9th at 1pm Sunday, February 9th at 7pm

    British medical technology company Smith & Nephew plans to buy U.S. medical device maker ArthroCare in a $1.5 billion Online Deals that it says will strengthen its sports medicine business.

    Smith & Nephew said Monday it will pay $48.25 in cash for each share of ArthroCare Corp., which is based in Austin, Texas.

    That’s a premium of about 6 percent to its closing price of $45.38 on Friday.

    Smith & Nephew PLC said ArthroCare’s expertise in shoulder joint repair will complement its strength in knee repair. CEO Olivier Bohuon said in a statement that the broader product portfolio and the combined sales force will help generate “significant additional revenue.”

    ArthroCare has 35.4 million shares outstanding, counting options and restricted stock, according to Smith & Nephew spokesman Charles Reynolds. Smith & Nephew values the deal at $1.7 billion counting ArthroCare’s cash. It expects the acquisition to close by the middle of the year.

    ArthroCare makes surgical devices, instruments and implants and employs about 1,800 people.

    Its stock jumped 6.8 percent, or $3.08, to $48.36 on Monday, less than an hour before markets opened

    The stock had already climbed 13 percent so far this year, as of Friday’s close. Much of that gain came after the company announced on Jan. 7 that it will pay a $30 million fine to resolve an investigation by the U.S. Department of Justice into alleged securities fraud by its former management.

    The Justice Department also is charging the company with one count of conspiracy to commit securities fraud and wire fraud, but it has entered into a two-year deferred prosecution agreement with ArthroCare. If the company meets requirements set by the Justice Department, it won’t bring charges against the company.

    ArthroCare has said that deal will end the Justice Department’s investigation, which was first made public in December 2008.

    U.S.-traded shares of Smith & Nephew closed at $72.24 on Friday.

    Copyright 2014 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.

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    These card companies offer best fraud protection

    And the winners are …

    Bank of America was On Sales in class for the seventh consecutive year with an overall score of 70 percent, significantly higher than the average score of 55 percent.

    BofA was rated very strong on authentication-verifying that a customer is legitimate and not an impostor. It also has a comprehensive set of alerts that are automatically activated when someone becomes a customer. These include alerts for an unusually large transaction, a transaction in a foreign location or when someone takes out a cash advance against the card.

    (Read more: Identity thieves gear up to steal your tax refund)

    "That’s great," Pascual said. "The customer knows best if something is fraudulent and BofA is not afraid to leverage that relationship to protect the account."

    Best in prevention

    Clearly, it’s better for the bank and the customer to stop fraud, rather than deal with it afterward.

    USAA earned the top score with 64 percent, up from 57 percent in 2012. USAA offers two-way alerts that notify the customer in almost real time of suspicious activity and let the customer respond-to tell the bank if the transaction is legit.

    “This is a great feature to help prevent fraudulent transactions from being completed,” Pascual said. “And it gives the bank information that will let them make future decisions about your spending pattern and if something might be fraudulent.”

    Bank of America was a close second in the prevention category, followed by Citi, Navy Federal Credit Union and State Farm tied for fourth.

    Best in detection

    Wells Fargo took this category. Its score of 83 percent is well above the industry average of 65 percent. Fifth Third Bank, First National Bank of Omaha and U.S. Bank tied for second place with a score of 80 percent. Nordstrom (77 percent) rounded out the top five.

    Best in resolution

    Associated Bank and SunTrust tied for the top spot with scores of 90 percent. Both banks will reverse a fraudulent charge or provide a line of credit within 24 hours of receiving a fraud report. BB&T, Pentagon Federal Credit Union and PNC were tied at 85 percent.

    If you have a problem and report it, you expect to get help right away. Don’t count on it.

    Less than half (42 percent) of the card issuers in the survey respond within 48 hours of a fraud report. Javelin believes a delay of more than two days is unacceptable.

    Credit card fraud is a massive problem. Javelin estimates that about 7.5 million Americans had their card compromised in 2012. The monetary loss from this fraud reached $8 billion. Remember, we all pay for credit card fraud, even if our card isn’t misused, in the form of higher prices and higher bank fees.

    A summary of Javelin’s Ninth Annual Credit Card Issuers’ Identity Safety Scorecard is available online for free.

    -By CNBC contributor Herb Weisbaum. Follow him on Facebook and Twitter or visit The ConsumerMan website.