Mobile Saturday once again proves itself as a top trending SXSW destination


The Urban Airship crew is now back from SXSW where for the third year in a row, we delivered the festival’s only daylong track dedicated to mobile. Once again, we had a packed house eager to learn from an all-star lineup of customers and expert panelists on some of mobile’s hottest topics. We were also pleased to see Mobile Saturday become a top trending topic at SXSW (#MobileSat) if only we could figure out how to get Grumpy Cat to come or get Jimmy Kimmel to tweet us, we might be able to take the top spot.

What made Mobile Saturday such a success? Each of the five sessions treated attendees to deep insights from world-leading brands and industry experts. To quickly get some context, take a look at each of the panels and audience reactions gleaned from social media for fast context, and be sure to sign-up for full recaps coming shortly:

Mobile Beyond Marketing: The Era of UnAdvertising
This kickoff session at Mobile Saturday, focused on how mobile is changing the entire marketing playing field. The conversation between Arlie Sisson (Starwood Hotels & Resorts), Brendan Wright (Walmart), Sonia Nagar (RetailMeNot), and Brent Hieggelke (Urban Airship) revealed the challenges and opportunities mobile presents to marketers. Some insights from the crowd were: 


Changing the Human Experience with Mobile Location
Cory Bergman (Breaking News), Alan Simkowski (Gimbal), Ajay Waghray (HomeAway), and Michael Richardson (Urban Airship) discussed use-cases that leverage location-based technology. Cory brought up a specific example of location-based messaging that notified him of a shooting across the street from his child's daycare, which resulted in him beating a mad rush of other concerned parents to the phone lines. Combined with the constantly evolving uses of location, the audience extracted these gems:

Driving to Retention: a Simple Roadmap 
Ben Jones (AQKA), Kimberlie Christen (Redbox), Peter Roybal (ABC News), and Alyssa Meritt (Urban Airship) dove deep into the mechanisms and strategies that drive greater retention of app users--a key challenge and huge opportunity for virtually any app.

Watch What Happens Next: a World of Wearables 
Julie Ask (Forrester Research), Richard Ting (R/GA), Asif Khan (LBMA), and Scott Townsend (Urban Airship) rocked this panel focused on what’s coming next. This was a discussion about new, emerging technologies involved frank opinions and expert advice on how businesses should orient themselves and their strategies in the new world of wearable devices.

Wallet Wars: Payments are Just the Beginning 
Brian Kirby (Wendy's), John Lunn (PayPal), Jordan Mckee (451 Research), and Stephanie Capretto (Urban Airship) deciphered the possibilities of mobile payments and how digital wallets may become mobile marketing platforms in their own right in the near future. This was the final wrap up session before the SXSW-worthy party commenced.

What else made it great? Biggest iBeacons event ever!
Urban Airship powered push for the official SXSW® GO app for the fourth year in a row and worked with partners Gimbal and Eventbase Technology Inc. to deliver the world's largest iBeacon event. With over 1,000 of Gimbal’s beacons placed around various SXSW locations, the iBeacon technology at SXSW showed event attendees who is performing, the event schedule, and matches them with people at the same location who have similar interests listed in their attendee profile. With over five million beacon sightings recorded over the first four days of ‎SXSW, to call it success is an understatement.

Sign up here for video recaps of the panels

Hope to see you next year at Mobile Saturday.