Sponsorship Monday: Pepsico Podcasts @ SXSW

I’m at SXSW Interactive this week scouting new marketing trends. Pepsico’s sponsorship of the Podcast Playground was a ghost town early on, mainly due to it’s poor location at the end of a long, long hallway. But it’s gaining users every day. Their laptop bar is a meet-up scene. And the concept achieves what blogger Andrew Huff of the Chicago-based events website, Gaper’s Block dubbed, “Brand esteem.” I met up with Andrew here to talk about his site’s success with selling sponsorship and advertising. A SXSW veteran and new media guru, Andrew describes the effect of Pepsico’s sponsorship among technorati gathered here as elevating the brand to the status of a cool friend. In this case, Pepsico helps the consumer participate in an important event by helping them create content about it.

Pepsico is winning hearts and minds here at SXSW by putting content creation before the selling proposition. More sponsorship models are emerging here. Look for full coverage next Monday. It stopped raining and is finally warm and sunny. At last, I can thaw my Chicago bones and maybe pick up a few freckles on my nose as I walk from venue to venue. Lah!

(Sorry for not including a photo, but I left my USB cable for my Nikon back home.)