Who: Music, film, and media industry insiders, executives and artists

What: An annual media festival

When: March

Where: Austin, Texas

Why: Showcasing artists and industry trends that will emerge in the coming year

Although it is best known for its annual offering of music showcases highlighting the best up-and-coming artists from around the world, to call SXSW a music festival would be a disservice.

SXSW is a conference held every March in Austin, Texas. Over the course of one week, the organizers of the festival offer music showcases, film screenings and premieres, interactive media exhibits, conferences, panel discussions, and even comedy shows. Since its inception in 1987, SXSW has become well known as a leader in bringing together the best in the music, film, and gaming industries creating a media event that sets the course for what will be talked about in the coming year.

Each component of SXSW is an important one. However, its musical offering is unlike any in the world. SXSW has the official title of being the biggest music festival in the world offering more than 2,000 acts over seven days as of 2014. Artists, bands, and DJs converge from all areas of the world with SXSW now being known as the place for new bands to gain traction and get noticed. This is largely in part due to the amount of insiders and industry executives present at the festival every year.

When walking through the crowded streets of Austin during SXSW, you’re sure to see thousands of entertainment fans hopping from one show to the next. However, the real story at SXSW is what’s happening behind the scenes. Media companies, agencies, film studios, and other industry leaders are likely to have a presence at SXSW. This is the place where films, music, and ideas are not only showcased but are also bought and sold. Each year, SXSW sets the stage for what will be talked about, what will be popular, and what will turn a profit in the year to come. Having your feet on the ground in Austin in March means getting a first-hand glimpse at this and being able to make a move for yourself and your business.

Each year, SXSW grows in size and scope. The 2018 edition of the festival promises to offer popular music artists, world premieres of anticipated films, and much more. More importantly though, given its size and reputation, SXSW is one of the best opportunities for industry networking each and every year. As an industry executive, being at SXSW means being first in line to exciting opportunities that will shape the market for the upcoming year. You don’t want to miss it.

SXSW runs from March 9 – 18, 2018 in Austin, Texas