We all know how important music and events are to local culture, but what about to the local economy? The City of Austin wanted to find out what kind of $ impact its annual SXSW (South by Southwest) music, film and interactive festival provided and got their answer: $95 million.
Conducted by Angelou Economics, the $95 million figure that the festival was calculated to have brought to Austin’s local economy in 2007 was double that of estimates by the Austin Convention and Visitor’s Bureau, primarily because the latter only multiplies a standard number to each attendee and doesn’t take into account the added revenues businesses experience as a result of the event’s buzz. It’s this fine grain level of metrics, similar to those variables defining a natural cultural district, that cities need to learn to measure to truly understand the impact of creative third places, events and scenes.
SXSW in 2008 features over 1700 bands and is estimated to bring in $100 million when it runs March 7 through 16. Check out our SXSW profile from a couple of years ago.
Image source: dncliss.