SXSW, photo by Michael Buckner

Publisher of Silicon Hills News

South by Southwest is about to begin.

That means anxiety is at an all-time high. Because fear of missing the panel or keynote or meetup, movie, band, party that everyone is talking about is real. But the great thing about SXSW is that you will miss some great stuff. No doubt about it. No one can do everything that is cool at the Interactive, Film and Music conference that runs from March 9th to March 17th at venues throughout Austin.

And guess what? That’s OK. Just go with the flow. Right now, I have favorited more than 500 panels, talks, book signings and meetups on the SXSW Schedule app. And I will make it to a fraction of them. But the fact that there is so much going on at SXSW is what keeps people coming back year after year. And the people that you meet in chance encounters. The people make the event. They are highly creative, energized and inquisitive. Try to make as many connections as possible.

There are so many fabulous speakers this year including Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation’s Co-Chair Melinda Gates, U.S. Senator Bernie Sanders, YouTube CEO Susan Wojcicki, Bestselling Authors Ryan Holiday Tim Ferris, Ta-Nehisi Coates and Daniel Pink, London Mayor Sadiq Khan, Gayle King, Bumble’s Whitney Wolfe, Strangeworks Founder and CEO William Hurley, known as Whurley, to mention a few.

Big trends to look out for this year include blockchain and cryptocurrencies, artificial intelligence and robots, diversity and inclusion and lots of focus on startups looking for the next breakout technology and company.

SXSW is a melting pot of cultures and people from all over the world. Make sure to attend some of the special events put on by the European Union, China, Australia, Mexico, Brazil, Germany, Ireland, Norway, Scandinavia and so many more.

And if you’re wondering what to wear, check out this article in Forbes about six inspirational style guides for the conference.

New this year is the Fairmount Hotel, which opens just in time for SXSW and is home to the Brands & Marketing” track at SXSW 2018.

Also, there’s a new beer in town for the event. The Oasis Brewing Company in cooperation with Hackney House and London, will be launching a craft beer called the Cockney Cowboy at the Cockney Cowboy Calling Event.

HBO is also creating a special set of the town of Sweetwater from its hit series Westworld, a Wild West theme park filled with robotic hosts that let guests do whatever they please, on a ranch outside of Austin. Reservations to visit the attraction have sold out in advance but HBO promises to release batches throughout SXSW to people who follow its social media feeds.

Here’s a roundup of some of the best SXSW lists by topic. Check them out. (And if you want to get together and talk about lessons learned and inspirational content, companies and people coming out of the conference, join us at Galvanize later this month for a SXSW Recap.)

Also, be sure to subscribe to our podcast, Ideas to Invoices, which we launched last year at SXSW. We’ll be interviewing special guests throughout SXSW. And visit our website daily for our stories.


8 All Important Links for SXSW 2018 by Hugh Forrest, SXSW programming director. (Check out his numerous posts on Medium highlighting various speakers at the event)

The Austin Chronicle’s Guide: The AC Inside and Out Guide to SXSW.

Joshua Baer, founder of Capital Factory, wrote The Austinpreneur’s Guide to SXSW 2018 Panels & Parties

Marc Nathan put together a 2018 SXSW VIP Insiders Guide


National Public Radio’s Your Guide to NPR at SXSW2018

Best of SXSW 2018: Marketer’s guide to talks, networking events & more by Blast PR

Rolling Stones’ 20 Movies We Can’t Wait to See at SXSW 2018

Insider’s Guide to SXSW Film Festival 2018

Austin Monthly’s SXSW 2018: 5 Art Installations to Check Out


The Music Bloggers Guide to SXSW 2018

Maxim’s Guide: Where to Eat, Drink and Party Down in Austin for SXSW 2018

If you have a guide that should be on this list, drop an email to and we’ll update it. Thanks.