By Austin Calhoun
Dax Patton, business development manager for SXSW Conference and Festival, spoke to Texas State students Thursday about marketing in the ever-evolving professional landscape.
Patton began by telling his personal career story in which after working in staffing for a large company directly out of college, he took a risk and created Digital Touch Systems with a few friends.
Digital Touch Systems started as a touchscreen table developer for hospitality services, which has grown to develop touchscreen interfaces ranging from information kiosks at events to drive-thru menus at fast-food restaurants.
Patton expressed that one of his proudest moments was setting up a $50,000 deal with SXSW for the festival to use his companies touch screens as information booths, though he had very little experience in marketing Digital Touch Systems to prospective companies.
That deal opened a door for Patton to SXSW and aided him to become a business development manager for the festival while maintaining a consulting position with Digital Touch Systems.
Patton then answered questions from the audience and expressed what he believed to be crucial in marketing in today’s age.
Lauren Crank, a student in the audience, found Patton’s tips to be very insightful.
“The thing that stuck out to me was his emphasis on networking,” said Crank. “Never stop networking and utilizing it as a tool to grow whatever brand you are marketing.”
Patton addressed the necessity to maintain professionalism at all times.
“Look someone in the eye, show respect,” said Patton. “You never know who you’re talking to or who you’re next to.”
Sara Shields, a grad student at Texas State, also attended the event and related to Patton’s eagerness for education.
“I really liked how he talked about constantly trying to learn and learn even after you think you know everything,” said Shields. “That’s something I constantly do as a student and teacher.”
Patton closed by telling the students to be prepared for failure and to not allow it to stop them from chasing their goals.
“A lot of CEOs have been fired before,” said Patton. “That’s because they’re hard-headed.”