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Vote for These SXSW 2023 Panels from the Ad Council

Austin’s annual South by Southwest conference showcases innovation across entertainment, tech, education and culture. True to the collaborative spirit of the conference, the public helps select each year’s slate of presentations through the Panel Picker.

Ad Council submitted the proposed topics below for consideration for SXSW’s 2023 lineup. Click on the links to read the full proposals and vote for the ones you’d like to see come to life next year! Voting ends August 21.

The Kids Are Not Alright: How Tech Can Help
With a 51 percent increase in suicide attempts by teen girls, and the reality that LGBTQ youth are six times more likely to experience depression, finding ways to support young people struggling with mental health issues has become even more urgent. Social innovation labs are responding with investments that reflect the tech and gaming youth love, as well creating accelerators designed to help start-ups meet the moment. In this session, you will hear from funders at HopeLab and Headstream about investments in new digital tools and interventions being developed for teens and young adults.

Leveling the Playing Field for Diverse Creators
Inequities abound in the creator space – from pay inequality to access to representation and resources to simply getting credit when credit is due. It is up to all of us to begin to level the playing field at each step in the supply chain. We’ll discuss how brands, agencies, creator networks and media platforms can support diverse creators through pay equity, as well as access to production, distribution and marketing resources.

Using Data to Find and Activate Influencers for Social Good
The best influencer partnerships are those where all involved have a deep connection and passion for the initiative. While sometimes data seems cold and impersonal, a number of proven data sources and methods can enhance these key partnerships. This discussion will show how the Ad Council fielded the PassionPoints survey & used results, how tracking mis and disinformation can inform your influencer strategy, and the importance of using peer-to-peer influencers locally using location data.

The Secret Relationship Between Hollywood and the World of Social Good
Many celebrities use their platform to speak out on behalf of social causes they’re passionate about, but what about the folks behind the camera? We’ll share a behind-the-scenes look at how the entertainment business has a significant positive impact on our nation’s most pressing social issues. We’ll discuss how showrunners and screenwriters partner with nonprofits and include key issues in TV shows and movies, why commercial filmmakers are uniquely qualified to tell stories of social impact, and the important role the entertainment business has played in the storied history of the Ad Council.

Driving DEI through Skills-Based Hiring
It’s time to shatter the myth that no degree means no skills. Half of all U.S. workers face a “paper ceiling” – the invisible barrier that comes at every turn for workers without a bachelor's degree. Biased algorithms. Automatic degree screening. No alumni network. It adds up. And it limits diversity and equity in the workplace. More than 60% of Black, 55% of Hispanic, 66% of rural, and 61% of veteran workers are STARs (Skilled through Alternative Routes). By naming the paper ceiling, we can begin to dismantle it—casting a wider net for the talent we welcome into our organizations, and creating more equitable opportunities for everyone. Whatever your role, you can help change the narrative about STARs, and champion skills-based hiring in your workplace and beyond.

Impacting Through Partnership: A Brand’s Role in Societal Change
Although vying for share of attention tends to bring a competitive tone to most brands’ and platforms’ marketing efforts, social impact is a space where everyone can play together to address important societal issues. Partnerships, especially across diverse but complementary organizations, can create long-term value for our society and increase brand equity. Customer activism plays a significant role in consumer behavior; audiences are invested in narratives around social issues, and they are demanding brands play a role in making the world a better place. Join Amazon, Snap, WWE and the Ad Council for an inspiring conversation on how to propel social change and drive purpose through the power of partnership.

Ad Council’s High Time to Change Driving High
Cannabis is becoming legal in many states, but that doesn’t mean there isn’t a deeply rooted culture of consumers existing in the U.S, which makes up the bedrock of a blossoming industry. While we want to celebrate this new freedom, we need to ensure we celebrate safely.

When you feel different, you drive different. This is one way the Ad Council and Madwell are shedding light on the importance of safe driving without insulting cannabis users.

This session will cover the importance of understanding a culture and, instead of villainizing or combating it, working with it to promote change. The Ad Council set out to do just that in their recent Drug-Impaired Driving campaign, where it’s okay to enjoy your new freedom—as long as it’s done safely.

Photo: "Austin Texas" by eschipul is licensed under CC BY-SA 2.0.


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