SXSW is a place to interact with tomorrow. During this wild week, attendees can hear the next great bands, see the movies that will win future awards, and learn about startups that will change our lives. Yet despite all of this forward thinking, when I arrive in Austin I can’t help reflecting on the past and how far we’ve come in such a short time.
In 2010, Dyn attended SXSW for the first time. Well, actually, it is more accurate to say I attended SXSW for the first time. Dyn didn’t have the budgets to justify a formal trip. Luckily, we love going guerilla.
That first year, I, along with a few members of my team (aka my friends from other companies), crashed a Diggnation Live event at Stubbs and convinced them to allow us to buy VIP passes for 50 attendees of the show. That same night (it was an epic night), we won Revision3 as a client and saw a crazy solid show from The Walkmen.
I tweeted from our relatively fresh @Dyn Twitter account to the thousands in attendance and became an instant celebrity. Running around in my ‘DNS IS SEXY’ shirt and hanging the shirts in my hotel room window, we instantly started a “who the heck are those Dyn guys” trend.
It was a great reminder about what I love about technology: the only limit to your success is your own ambition.
While you can never really top your first time, we’ve certainly tried. In fact, we’ve raised our game every year.
There was our memorable house party, turned rave, turned Dyn Music Meets Tech event at an outdoor symphony at a Mexican Restaurant (you can’t make this stuff up!). Headlining the stage that year were emerging artists Hoots & Hellmouth and Jay Nash. We had a video crew follow the near debacle turned amazing event.
The last two years were highlighted by an amazing move to Cedar St. Courtyard where #DynMMT really took off. I’d be remiss not to give a HUGE thanks to our friends from Dawes for their amazing SXSW Interactive closing night sets.
It’s been a whirlwind and SXSW has been great to us. It may sound cliché, but SXSW is so much more than the parties and the wild stories. Yes, SXSW is a slam-dunk brand awareness show, but the heart of the week is the relationships that are formed.
Over the years we’ve began great courtships with some of the best Internet brands in the world, all while touring Austin. We’ve been fortunate that many of these brands have become our customers.
Whether we’re making friends with Austinites like Josh Baer, Dean Drako, and our closest BFF Lenny Tropiano, from Homeaway or meeting with Amazon CTO Werner Vogels or WordPress CTO Barry Abrahamson, every conversation has the chance to alter your career and the narrative of Dyn.
We’ve rubbed elbows with Dennis Crowley, Gary Vaynerchuk, Robert Scoble, Tony Hsieh… the list goes on and on. Founders and tops execs from across the Internet landscape come to Austin to network, talk shop and trends, and push each other to the future.
We’re thrilled to be here as it’s been a wonderful journey. And who knows? Maybe a young tech entrepreneur will write a blog next year saying he rubbed shoulders with Dyn at SXSW 2014 — set to be our most attended and requested event EVER with over 6500 general admission and 1000 VIPs registered so far!