winningAs FAKEGRIMLOCK has so eloquently said, using the giant SXSW conference as a platform for marketing and publicity is hard. Really hard.

Millions of startups (well, at least hundreds) hit Austin, Texas (gently, with love) at the same time (almost) trying desperately to get our attention (tough task) and eventually yours (even harder).

To help, we’re running the VentureBeat #WinSXSW contest every single day, with millions of dollars in prizes (total lie), massive street cred (in Austin and Afghanistan), and free beer for life (in our San Francisco office on Thursdays and Fridays when the moon is full the night before the tide is high during leap years, not transferable to dependents).


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Two of those startups — just two — rocked days one and two more than all the rest, and they are the first winners of #WinSXSW. They are Deverge and Dealflicks.

Deverge is a fairly stealthy startup from New York focused on tech and comedy that raised over $150,000 on Kickstarter. They tell their story better than we do:

And Dealflicks is “Priceline for movie tickets” that focuses on getting “butts in seats” in movie theaters. The company has taken about $400,000 in seed capital, and here’s their pitch:

Congratulations to both Deverge and Dealflicks!

Oh, and by the way, there are real prizes, including cash and services worth more than $100,000.

Want to enter? The contest is still open as long as SXSW is open.

Here’s how.

photo credit: JamesJam via photopin cc


VB’s research team is studying mobile user acquisition: Chime in here, and we’ll share the results.