Marketing Lessons from the Grateful Dead

A session at SXSW Interactive 2011

Saturday 12th March, 2011

11:00am to 12:00pm (CST)

What can internet marketers learn from cultural icon and American jam band, the Grateful Dead?

The Grateful Dead is a great case study in contrarian marketing. Their marketing innovations spurred from doing the opposite of what other bands (and record labels) were doing at that time.

Starting in the internet-free 1960s, the Grateful Dead pioneered social media and inbound marketing concepts that businesses of all industries still use today. Ahead of their time, they believed in "freemium" content and created a huge network of people who recorded and traded tapes. They focused on cultivating a dedicated and vocal community that drove millions of fans to the band's live shows for over thirty years, generating hundreds of millions of dollars in revenue. Today's companies using social media can still learn from their success.

About the speakers

This person is speaking at this event.
David Meerman Scott

Marketing strategist, keynote speaker, and bestselling author of 8 books including The New Rules of Marketing & PR and Newsjacking. bio from Twitter

This person is speaking at this event.
Brian Halligan

CEO of @HubSpot; Author of Inbound Marketing book bio from Twitter

Next session in Ballroom G

12:30pm Guerrilla Research Methods by Russ U

10 attendees

  • Becky Minervino
  • Brian Halligan
  • Dean Cruse
  • David Meerman Scott
  • Geraldine Le Roux
  • johnnyrotten67
  • Katie Davison
  • Matt Keeler
  • McKee Floyd
  • Georgetta Nicol

5 trackers

  • Arena Reed
  • Derek Curtis
  • kathybabb
  • David Beaudouin
  • Online Prism

Sign in to add slides, notes or videos to this session

Sign in to track this session

Tell your friends!


Time 11:00am12:00pm CST

Date Sat 12th March 2011


Ballroom G, Austin Convention Center

Session type

Book Reading

Short URL


View the schedule



Books by speaker

  • Real-Time Marketing and PR, Revised
  • The New Rules of Marketing & PR
  • Inbound Marketing

See something wrong?

Report an issue with this session