Go to DIG SOUTH Icon, April 25-27, 2017



What is DIG SOUTH (digsouth.com)?

DIG SOUTH is a new media company for the new South. We focus on innovation in technology, business and culture, publishing the best of what’s happening across the region. Think of us as the South’s epicenter of innovation for ambitious people. DIG SOUTH produces DIG SOUTH ICON (Innovation Conference) and supports the DIG NATION Member Community.


DIG SOUTH empowers you to launch, grow, scale and #SucceedintheSouth.

The 6-Cylinder Success Engine (how we empower you to Succeed in the South)

We think of DIG SOUTH as a 6-cylinder Success Engine: Celebrate, Collaborate, Contacts, Content, Careers & Capital. C-students are the most entrepreneurial, right? Let’s break it down.

#1 CELEBRATE – We celebrate innovative companies, founders, entrepreneurs and fast-growth startups at digsouth.com, across our multimedia platforms and at elegantly rad events.

#2 COLLABORATE – We inspire collaboration between the South’s top tech and creative network and leading global brands. We keep the tribe connected by way of the DIG NATION member community and in person at the annual DIG SOUTH Innovation Conference (ICON), monthly DIG Mashups and other partner events.

#3 CONTACTS, #4 CONTENT, #5 CAREERS, #6 CAPITAL – These 4-Cs are the resources included in our DIG NATION member platform. DIG NATION provides the resources and opportunities you need to succeed – 365 days a year (minus the holidays you deserve and should take right now).

What’s the purpose of DIG SOUTH?

DIG SOUTH gives leading tech and creative companies, entrepreneurs, experts, startups and other innovators in the South a multichannel media voice owned by locals and headquartered in the region – with offices in Charleston and (soon) Atlanta. It’s natural and essential for a community to own its voice.

What is DIG SOUTH ICON (Innovation Conference)?

Now entering our 5th year, DIG SOUTH ICON (Innovation Conference) is the first and foremost event celebrating and elevating the South’s innovation economy. Produced by DIG SOUTH Media and held annually in Charleston, ICON welcomes 3000+ attendees, 150+ high-level speakers, 100+ investors, and national touring bands. DIG SOUTH ICON is where leading global brands such as Facebook, Buzzfeed, Twitter, CNN and IBM connect to the region’s most successful companies and the smartest scalable startups. #DIG2017 Visit: icon.digsouth.com

When and where is the next DIG SOUTH ICON?

The next DIG SOUTH ICON will be held April 25–27, 2017 at the Charleston Gaillard Center and other stunning locations across the Charleston peninsula and greater metro.

Who attends and speaks at DIG SOUTH?

Over the last four years, DIG SOUTH has welcomed more than 5000 attendees and 800 speakers from the world’s leading brands, including Facebook, BuzzFeed, IBM, Twitter, The New York Times, Adobe and many more plus the South’s hottest companies, including Blackbaud, Red Hat, Benefitfocus, CNN, Coca-Cola, BoomTown, Dixon Hughes Goodman, SPARC and many more. Check out last year’s presenters, a list of past participating brands, and our sponsors.

DIG NATION: The South’s Innovation Network

What is the DIG NATION Member Community?

DIG NATION is the South’s innovation tribe providing the Contacts, Content, Careers and Capital you need to #SucceedintheSouth. DIG NATION will soon offer the South’s most comprehensive company and investor directory, job board and calendar of events supporting innovation. Members receive important tips and tactics from DIG SOUTH experts, badge discounts to DIG SOUTH events and other special offers.

Are we exclusive to the South?

DIG SOUTH is global and NOT exclusive to the South. We believe that the best way to promote innovation across the region is to invite global brands and experts to connect, collaborate and do business with leading brands and startups based in the South. It’s a global economy and we engage in the global conversation on innovation.

Are we partisan, parochial or protectionist?

DIG SOUTH is a nonpartisan, nonsectarian, global media company focused on innovation across industries, mediums, platforms and disciplines without regard to political, religious or other affiliations. We simply believe that innovators based in the South should have a homegrown, global media outlet focused on innovation in technology, business and culture.

How do we define innovation and the Innovation Mindset?

For us, innovation is how we improve our lives through new ideas, methods and devices paired with an optimistic outlook. We call it the “Innovation Mindset.” Got a problem or challenge? Let’s solve it together. Today. Now. You get the picture.

What’s the DIG SOUTH story?

In 2011, Stanfield Gray hopped up to the AdAge Digital Conference in NYC. Inspired by pros from Silicon Valley, NYC, Boston and other major tech hubs, he was equally frustrated that the same opportunities to work at a high level in digital technology and other creative industries were scarce in the South. Why should the region’s top talent — Apple CEO and Alabaman Tim Cook and Facebook COO and Miami-raised Sheryl Sandberg, for example — continue to leave the region to pursue careers at the most innovative companies? If someone chooses to go, then fine. Smart move. But Gray thought we should work harder in the South to seed, grow and scale our own options. So, Gray founded DIG SOUTH, the first Innovation Conference dedicated specifically to elevating the American South’s digital economy and building opportunities for the next generation of exceptional talent. Time to kickass. Officially, DIG SOUTH was born on the 4th of July, 2012.

Along with a small team, including his wife and CFO Sunny Gray, Producer Nicole Garrigan, Sponsorship Director Harriett Lee, Art Director Matthew Sheriff, and a host of other amazing friends, Gray rallied the community behind the idea and launched a Kickstarter campaign to raise a small seed fund to launch DIG SOUTH. Held April 12–14, 2013, at the College of Charleston in Charleston, SC, the first DIG SOUTH Innovation Conference drew 454 paid attendees with more than a thousand guests passing through the DIG Trade Show, nightly Shindigs, Space Walk and other free events. The Conference grew exponentially each year, adding a hackathon, pitch events, demo day and other programs, while paid attendance rose to more than 2000 attendees for the most recent Conference held April 26–28, 2016, at the Charleston Gaillard Center.

To date, DIG SOUTH has welcomed more than 5000 attendees and 800 speakers from the world’s leading brands, including Facebook, BuzzFeed, IBM, Twitter, The New York Times, Adobe and many more plus the South’s leading companies, including Blackbaud, Red Hat, Benefitfocus, CNN, Coca-Cola, BoomTown, Dixon Hughes Goodman, SPARC and many more.

Now entering the company’s 5th year, DIG SOUTH is stoked to relaunch digsouth.com as the epicenter of the Innovative South, rebrand the Conference as DIG SOUTH ICON, and launch the DIG NATION member community in the fall of 2016. We’re equally stoked to welcome to the DIG Team: Sponsorship & Sales Director Harriott Parker, Web Director & Music Coordinator Logan Venderlic, and Editor & Social Media Director Allyson Sutton.

What is Stanfield Gray’s background?

Stanfield Gray is the founder and CEO of DIG SOUTH and an expert on innovation in the South. Please tell his parents that’s what his master’s degree in Southern Studies from Ole Miss is good for — yes, really, Dad. Gray has worked as a startup founder, festival producer, public speaker, app developer, digital marketer, writer and editor, landscaper, gallery curator, musician and music studio manager. Currently based in Charleston with his lovely wife, Sunny, and their two whip-smart kids, Stella and Garrison, Gray has lived in Spartanburg and Columbia, South Carolina; Oxford, Mississippi; and New York City. He is a Liberty Fellow (Aspen Global Leadership Network) and a graduate of the University of South Carolina Honors College and the University of Mississippi Southern Studies Program. For further details, check out his LinkedIn profile, or just ask him. Gray is a son of the South, and the son of a car dealer and a sex therapist — the secret sauce for the making of an entrepreneur.

How do I sponsor, advertise or exhibit with DIG SOUTH?

Easy peasy. Just give Harriott Parker a call at (843) 532-2309 or email her: harriott@digsouth.com.

How do I speak, write for, pitch, volunteer, intern or otherwise get involved with DIG SOUTH?

Send questions and suggestions to info@digsouth.com and we’ll connect you to the best DIG Team member.

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