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Sessions at SXSW Interactive 2011 about Parenting

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Friday 11th March 2011

  • The Life of the Startup Parent

    by Joshua Porter and Charlie Park

    You’re starting a startup, running a blog professionally, investing in other startups, or otherwise doing "the geek thing," and yet ... you know that your identity is rooted even more in the little one at home who’s toddling around in a playpen, learning teamwork on a soccer field, working on a science fair experiment, or otherwise doing "the kid thing."

    How do you balance your role as a parent with your role as a co-founder? How do you reconcile these two worlds, each of which would happily consume you completely? How much do you rely on your (life) partner? Your (business) partners? How do you reconcile the tension between these two worlds?

    A panel of rockstar parents/startup cofounders will share their secrets of success, their awkward failures, and their startup / parenting war stories.

    LEVEL: Beginner

    At 2:00pm to 3:00pm, Friday 11th March

    In Rio Grande B, Marriott Courtyard Austin Downtown/Convention Center

  • Are We Not Men? Reaching New American Dads

    by Craig Heimbuch

    Men's media has changed tremendously - almost as much as men and dads have. Today's dads are active in every aspect of the household, from parenting to chores, and yet, they are largely overlooked as readers and consumers.

    New American Dads are thirsty for knowledge and a community that speaks their common language - that of the real man. The new language of men helps Jacks of all trades learn how to be better at all of them, retain their essential masculinity and perform well in a new paradigm of family, work and self. Traditional media outlets - those that espouse the virtues of supposedly manly interests ($10,000 suits, rare scotch and women, women, women) are missing an opportunity to serve this emerging male marked.

    In order to speak 'Dad,' media must speak to the realities of his life, his priorities, responsibilities, aspirations and, above all else, be useful. The growing online media directed at the New American Dad understands that service journalism - that which seeks to inform as well as entertain - is the next evolution in the daddy blogger.

    Blogs have their place, but in order to effect change in men's media, online resources must engage the reader in a conversation, one in which the consumer walks away feeling better informed than they had before engaging the site.

    Service journalism - how-tos, how it works and best-of lists - have practical applications in readers' lives, thus engendering loyalty and creating conversations with a long overlooked population, while developing an audience for whom older media models based on supposed aspiration and stereotype have little meaningful impact.

    Speak to dads in their language, encourage them to speak back, teach them something they can use and entertain them - this is the next evolution of men's media.

    LEVEL: Beginner

    At 3:30pm to 4:30pm, Friday 11th March

    In Rio Grande A, Marriott Courtyard Austin Downtown/Convention Center

Saturday 12th March 2011

  • Hacking Kids: How to Raise a Digital Native

    by John Bracken

    The Internet and mobile phones have created a new realm of possibilities, and distractions, for parents. Dads, and other non-birthing child care providers, face new challenges in negotiating the digital age. The panel will build on the lessons and tales emerging from NuevoDads, a private listserv of 50-60 techie fathers, and a few mothers.
    The panel will:
    - create a safe space for peers to discuss a multitude of parenting issues
    - create a network for both parenting and non-parenting needs
    - explore the changes from the past, when being a dad was a fan isolated task.

    LEVEL: Beginner

    At 5:00pm to 6:00pm, Saturday 12th March

    In Room 8A, Austin Convention Center

Monday 14th March 2011

  • Online Mom Communities = Hotbed of Local Influencers

    by Lindsay Maines and Jennifer James

    Digital influence is going hyper-local, especially in the mom market. There are a myriad of online communities geared specifically towards mothers. Within that demographic, the structure silos even further into green mom influencers, fashion oriented influencers, literary, music moms, etc. What we learned in presenting last year's SXSW Core Conversation about marketing to tastemaker moms: Marketers want to know how to tap into the power of these online enclaves, without violating ethical word of mouth marketing standards or the mores of communities. But beyond working with these online influencers in the digital sphere, there's an opportunity for brands to identify thought leaders and extend partnerships into local markets. One successful example of this concept in the past year include Chevrolet's "Girl's Night Out" in Houston program, which brought together carefully selected local women bloggers for a series of events in Chevy vehicles, which the women then digitally documented. There were no strings or conditions, and the authenticity of the content is engaging. It was a win for the brand and the bloggers. More automakers, restaurants, and clothing brands are utilizing this concept of partnering with online influencers to create local events- which then circle back around end extend the power of engagement digitally. How can your brand leverage it?

    LEVEL: Intermediate

    At 11:00am to 12:00pm, Monday 14th March

    In Hill Country CD, Hyatt Regency Austin