Cannes Lions Day Five – Work, work, work, work, work
Our final day at Cannes Lions was spent immersing ourselves in the creative work at The Palais and meeting some of the judges. There were many brilliant and award-winning pieces which we were grateful to experience first-hand, and several strong themes became apparent to us throughout the process.
- Diversity and inclusion in all shapes and colours. Brands highlighted new as well as existing issues and did lots to show how their work was genuinely changing conversation, and action.
- Cause related creative that used the power of brands to do good responsibly and credibly. Work committed to a deeper purpose: societal, environmental and political.
- Truth and transparency as consumers become wise to old storytelling tricks and brands need to have faith in their own authenticity. Campaigns were seen harnessing data and science for good.
- Putting heart into craft and not using technology for technology’s sake, or relying on a great idea to carry the work through. It was clear that judges were awarding work where there was a real focus on the craft and technical artistry.
- Brave and bold work that truly stood out. Judges were looking for ambitious creativity that took risks. “We want to celebrate the teams that were brave enough to create those pieces,” said one judge. And it wasn’t just the big brands doing this, smaller budgets can sometimes mean braver, more original work.
With that said, here are some of our favourite winners from this year:
- Pollution campaign “Trash Isles” – the world’s first country made of trash, claimed two Grand Prix awards at Cannes. Trash Isles petitioned the United Nations to recognise a new country, one made of large, floating piles of rubbish found in the sea. The nation, Trash Isles, had its own flag, currency and celebrities and influencers lined up to become its first honorary citizens.
- “Touching Masterpieces” A VR experience for the National Gallery of Prague gave blind people the chance to touch some of the world’s greatest masterpieces. Using haptic technology, gloves create an experience where a virtual hand can touch a 3D object in a virtual world, which sends feedback in the form of vibrations. A great example of technology being used with meaning.
- KFC’s “We’re Sorry” FCK campaign which was a masterclass in crisis management and proved the power of a smart print ad in winning back consumer favour. They used irreverent humour, cleverly appropriated their own logo and had the guts to go public on a problem. Crucially, they were rapid in their response – an area where most FMCG behemoths fail.
- Nissan’s #SheDrives campaign supported Saudi Arabia’s first wave of female drivers. It’s a great example of brand stepping in to help smooth out changes in society. The campaign touched people and helped change hearts and minds on a highly relevant issue. It also offered real and practical help for women learning to drive for the first time.
- Shoe polish brand Kiwi won big at Cannes with a campaign that explored the lives of American icons though long-form print ads with pictures of their very own shoes. The creatives photographed the boxing shoes of Muhammad Ali, the well-worn leather loafers of writer Ernest Hemingway, the dress shoes of Amelia Earhart, and the boots of President Abraham Lincoln.
By Victoria Crump-Haill, Digital Practice Director