SXSW/Greater Richmond Partnership

Objective: Develop a theme/campaign for the SXSW Interactive Festival that gets new businesses into Richmond.

The Greater Richmond Partnership wanted to spark conversations about why businesses should relocate to the Greater Richmond Area. My team and I competed against 15 other teams in front of a pannel of judges from various Richmond companies, including Altria, Carmax, and Capital One. Our concept was ultimately chosen as the winner and was used for Greater Richmond Partnership's booth at SXSW.


The Research

Richmond has come a long way over the years, and yet people outside of Richmond still associate the area with murder and confederate flags. In order to show non-Richmonders what's so great about Richmond, our team had to make sure we understood exactly what makes Richmond so unique. 

Richmond is a test market for some of the biggest brands in the U.S., and with good reason.

This is a place where people of different races, backgrounds, and classes shop together, eat together, work together,and live together. For businesses, this means that goods/services get into the hands of a diverse range of people.

Richmond lets you explore your passions.

Richmond has a little something for everyone. There are tons of outdoor activities, an awesome music and art scene, a growing foodie community, and multiple top-100 companies with their headquarters here. 

The low cost of living means there's less at stake.

Because rents are low, there's less pressure to have a certain kind of job or live life a certain way. People here have the money and the time to actually do the things that they want to do.

The Insight: Richmond is a place where you can take more risks.  

Because of the low cost of living and diverse community, this is a place where you can really explore your passions and live life on your own terms.

The Strategy: Take a chance on Richmond.

The Booth

We knew that the SXSW Interactive Festival would feature a lot of flashy technology. To make sure our booth stood out we went old school, avoiding technology in favor of interactive games such as giant jenga and trivia. As attendees played, they would learn about the Richmond area and quickly discover that the odds of successfully bringing a business to the Richmond area were higher than they thought. 

The Takeaway

Rather than using pamphlets that would get thrown out at the end of the day, we decided to create a deck of cards using artwork from different murals around Richmond.  We also worked with Shine Vessels, a local Richmond manufacturer which makes growlers and barware, to create custom mugs as prizes for the games.


  • Richmond BizSense, full article here.

  • Richmond Times Dispatch, full article here.

Teammates: Evan Chiplock (Copywriting), Harding Coughter (Experience Design)