Case Study: Launching the #1 Digital Campaign at SXSW

In 2016, we helped WDCEP reach their goal of becoming one of the most successful digital campaigns at SXSW.

In 2015, The Washington DC Economic Partnership (WDCEP) launched the #WeDC Campaign to promote DC as an attractive location for doing business.  WDCEP’s presence at SXSW 2015 resulted in record numbers for reach and impact for the DC community in Austin. But in 2016, we knew we could make #WeDC even bigger and better by building true community online and offline at SXSW, bringing new businesses and talent to DC, and further establishing the city as a great place for innovation and technology.

Bringing #WeDC to SXSW

Laying the Groundwork

We started by creating micro-campaigns featuring DC business leaders in the technology and creative industries. Then we created social media ads targeted to the DC business community to drive their interest in SXSW. Our social strategy team identified potential attendees of #WeDC events and engaged them in online conversation, searching through lists of conference attendees to identify possible opportunities to engage. We also provided live social media coverage of pre-SXSW events in DC to raise awareness.

Go Time!

Social Driver was on-the-ground every day of SXSW Interactive posting on Twitter, Instagram and Facebook.  Our team of strategists, content writers and video producers created content in real time: live videos, edited and produced on-site, gifs and memes of the space and event happenings, and targeted outreach to attendees using the hashtags #WeDC and #SXSW. We also had a brand ambassador program and social media ads targeted to our top ‘leads’.

After the event we followed up with key contacts and sent out wrap-up content to keep everyone excited and engaged.

The #WeDC campaign reached over 65 million people, surpassing all other ‘big consumer’ brands like Google and IBM in impressions and engagement. The team surpassed their ‘lead’ generation goal by 16% and we grew our engagement rates by over 100%. #WeDC was also the #5 trending hashtag and @WDCEP was a #7 influencer while at SXSW.