Given that the event attracts more than 30,000 total registrants, connecting with the exact kinds of people that you want to connect with can sometimes be challenging at SXSW Interactive. One strategy to accomplish this goal is to go to panels and presentations that you think will attract your desired demographic. Or, you can try the same approach with the many evening social events and activities.
But taking advantage of SXSW Meet Up programming can be a better strategy. These sessions are typically identified by a skill-set (for instance, "Drupal Meet Up" or "Mobile Developer Meet Up" or "Travel Bloggers Meet Up") or by a particular interest ("Reddit Meet Up" or "SX Singles Meet Up" or "LGBT in Tech Meet Up"). Over the five days of the 2014 SXSW Interactive Festival, we expect to host at least 50 different Meet Ups of all stripes, varieties, sizes and flavors.
Also, remember that Meet Ups serve as a great platform for introducing yourself to new and different tribes that you don't belong to yet. In other words, you don't have to be a Ruby Developer to attend the "Ruby Developers Meet Up." But, you should take part in this Meet Up if you want to learn more about Ruby on Rails -- or if you want to try to find a Ruby on Rails developer for your next amazing new media project.