Linhart Public Relations Digital Media Manager Krista Flock is a South by Southwest (SXSW) Interactive Liaison for the second year. We sat down with her to learn a little bit more about the conference and her role.
Tell us what SXSW is.
The entire SXSW event runs from March 9-18 and takes place in Austin, Texas. It is broken into three categories—film, music and interactive. This is my second year volunteering for the interactive part of this conference, SXSWi. SXSWi is everything digital, from gaming to online communities to social media; if it’s online you can probably find it at SXSWi. The interactive sessions run from March 9-13, with film and music kicking off around the same time.
What is your role as a SXSW liaison?
I am pretty much the middle man between SXSWi and the panelists. I have been assigned to 16 different sessions, ranging from solo presentations to group discussions to panels. I help answer any questions they have about their conversation, make sure they are prepared, and relay information to and from the SXSW team.
How did you become a liaison?
I have always wanted to go to SXSW, so two years ago I began following its blog. I read a post about becoming a liaison and I jumped at the chance. After my first year volunteering and attending the conference, I had a blast and couldn’t wait to do it again. Even better, I ended up being a liaison for Paula Berg (Linhart PR digital media leader) at last year’s conference, which is how we met.
What parts of this year are you most excited about?
One presentation I really want to catch is with Erika Napoletano. Her panel is called “The Power of Unpopular.” She is so motivating. She is a local Denver blogger who always talks about “being on fire,” in your job and personal life, which I think is an awesome concept.
Why do you think this event is important for the scope of digital media?
It’s important because the top people in the digital industry come together to understand and discuss where social media currently stands and what the next few years are going to look like. This conference provides instant access to experts in the field and they provide you with take-home knowledge. With such a high energy conference, it is hard to not get excited about all the cool things to learn.
What’s the most memorable moment from last year?
Besides meeting Paula, of course, I would have to say the Mapquest-hosted dinner at one of the best BBQ places in Austin, The Salt Lick. Mapquest rented a handful of buses and invited attendees to this amazing BBQ place, where they had all the BBQ food you could eat and a live band. It was an awesome night.
What’s one thing you want to emphasize about this conference?
If you have the opportunity to go, at least attend it once in your life. You never know who you’ll meet or what connections you will make. Everyone is so laid back and open. If you are interested in digital media at all, go. If you want to learn about the scope of digital media, go. If you have no idea what digital media is, go. Everyone should go. I love it.
We look forward to hearing more about Krista’s experience when she returns to the office from this year’s event!