“Too many people, not enough tech.”
Jay Baer provides the best observations about what is working, what is broken, and some general themes from the event.
- There is more than one SxSW
- Bigger Isn’t Necessarily Better
- The Conference isn’t that Good
- The Periphery Exceeds the Core
The great news is that there are fantastic opportunities for entrepreneurs in Toronto (and across Canada, but we’ll come back to that). There are a number of small focused events. MeshU and Mesh are firecode limited at MaRS to 450 attendees. They are excellent opportunities to connect with entrepreneurs, designers, developers, marketers and funders. The event is tight and there are multiple tracks, however, the core keeps getting stronger every year. The core speakers are fantastic.
MeshU is a one day event. Perfect. My attention span can’t handle 5 days (never mind the 5 nights). It is happening Monday, May 17, 2010, which is right before Mesh Conference and OCE Discovery. MeshU is the supporting event to these 2 larger events. The supporting role has allowed it to focus on delivering great value.
Education-based aka the strong core
The mesh team has always put on a great set of events, however in 2010 they have added one speaker that will justify the entire price of the ticket for me. Sean Ellis runs Startup-Marketing.com and 12in6 Inc.
12in6 specializes in helping startups unlock their full growth potential. Our metrics, survey and experiment-driven approach has evolved over 15 years of taking startups to market as VP marketing, interim VP marketing and as an outside advisor/consultant. The first five startups our principal (Sean Ellis) helped take to market were:
- Uproar (IPO)
- LogMeIn (IPO)
- Xobni (Khosla Ventures – rapid user and revenue growth)
- Eventbrite (Sequoia Ventures – rapid user and revenue growth)
- Dropbox (Sequoia Ventures – rapid user and revenue growth)
Five projects that include two IPOs, and funding from Khosla and Sequoia Ventures. Startups that have opportunity to learn about the Customer Development methodology from one of the best executors. This session will justify the price of the MeshU ticket for most startups.
David Crow is an emerging technology and start-up advocate/evangelist. At Microsoft Canada, he is responsible for helping Canadian start-ups gain access to software, support and visibility in the Microsoft ecosystem through programs like BizSpark (details at microsoft.com/bizspark). David blogs at http://davidcrow.ca/ and http://startupnorth.ca/ or follow him on Twitter @davidcrow