VidCon Is Getting Even Bigger With VidCon Baltimore—Here's What You Should Know

For years, VidCon Anaheim has been our favorite event for connecting with our favorite creators and watching the magic of fandom come alive, and we couldn't be more excited that VidCon is about to get bigger than ever.

That's because VidCon is expanding, and after a dozen years of VidCon Anaheim, plus events in Abu Dhabi in the United Arab Emirates and São Paulo, Brazil, as well as their most recent new event in México City, they've just added a new event to the roster with the first-ever VidCon Baltimore, being held at the Baltimore Convention Center from Sep. 29 to Oct. 1. Tickets don't go on sale until April 11, 2023, but our host and producer Sienna Leone got the chance to chat with Sarah Tortoreti, senior vice president of marketing and communications at VidCon, to learn all about VidCon's latest developments and what to expect next.

What VidCon Is All About

Sarah Tortoreti: VidCon is the largest event for digital content creators and their fans. It's really three events in one. It's a fan festival, all about the creators of the moment and their online audiences, coming together in real life. It's an industry Track summit where the digital media professionals that work and live and breathe all things digital come to be at the forefront of what's happening next in the digital media ecosystem. Lastly, there's the conference for Creator Track—the up-and-coming creators, people who want to learn to build their brand online and be the next wave of talent making careers in the space. VidCon sits at the intersection of those very diverse audiences, breaking down the barriers of the screen and bringing people together in real life to celebrate all things digital content creation.

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On VidCon Mexico

ST: Our inaugural event in Mexico City was a huge success. It was our first time in Latin America, and it was awesome. It was an Industry and Community Track event, and we saw over 14,000 people come through over three days. We had a huge presence from all of the big platforms. The expo floor was fun and vibrant and exciting. We had the top Latin American talent come. Meet and greets were also a huge hit there. It was the first event of its kind in the region, a great first foray into a new market with an appetite for what VidCon is, and we're really excited to build on that for years to come.

 

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On VidCon Baltimore

ST: We've been talking about doing an east coast event for some time now. It's something that we, as VidCon, have always felt was an opportunity for us, and our fans have been asking for it for several years now. We're really excited to add it to our roster in 2023 as we continue this global expansion of VidCon as a brand and as an event. We chose Baltimore because it's very centrally located on the east coast. It has easy access from all of the major cities, both by car and by public transit, which is great. It's a city that really cultivates creativity and diversity, and that's important to us. And it's a city in which we can grow. We're really excited to start here and build up an east coast show and bring the VidCon experience to a whole new subject of fans and creators in the industry.

We still have a long way to go, but you can expect a very similar event to what you get out of Anaheim. Obviously, it will be a little bit smaller to start, because it's a first-year event in that market, but in general, we're really aiming to bring the same kind of unique cross-section of experiences and people to the Baltimore event. What will help to differentiate it is we'll be bringing more east coast creators, so we'll be looking into the markets on the east coast that are also cultivating talent in that space. While there will be crossover between the Anaheim and Baltimore events, what's also super exciting is that VidCon is always trying to be super relevant and reflective of what's happening in the creator ecosystem at that time, and even though there are only a few months in-between the Anaheim event and the Baltimore event, we all know how quickly these things can change. It's nice for us to have another U.S. moment to be that reflection of what's going on in the creator economy, and I'm excited to see what that means in terms of the differentiated program.

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On the Future of VidCon Anaheim

ST: Anaheim is our flagship tentpole event. We're just going to keep coming back until nobody wants us to do it anymore! This creator ecosystem changes so quickly, and because there are always new things and new people being introduced, it's always going to be a unique experience. It's never going to feel stagnant or old or antiquated. That's what makes VidCon unique as an event and as an experience. I can't even tell you what's going to happen in Anaheim because it's too far away at this point. Obviously, we're already working on it, but there's not anything to tease yet because we want to make sure we're as reflective, in the moment as things are happening, as possible.

What's cool about it is that as we age, more people age into this fandom. People continue to learn about online content creation and discover new people. New platforms are introduced. If you think about it, before the pandemic, TikTok was barely a thing. Now, it's one of the things. That introduces a whole new set of talent, but also a whole new set of fans—people who are consuming the content. That, again, is what keeps the whole thing going, and vibrant, and people making their own connections and friends and finding like-minded people online, and us being able to break down those walls and bring everybody together into one place is what makes it really special. That will never change.

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The Best Thing About VidCon

ST: My favorite thing—and it might sound cliché—is the magic you feel when you're there. I always say to people, you don't get it until you actually experience it, and once you do, it's almost like a tangle intangible. It's a feeling. When I see a kid crying because they're finally meeting their hero, or two strangers becoming best friends by the end of a meet and greet line, it's that. It's those little moments that turn into magic that are at the core. It's the fabric of what VidCon is. I almost get emotional talking about it because it makes it so special and so unique.

 

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