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Get Advertising Smart - Cannes Lions 2018

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Following BBDO's phenomenal performance at this year's Cannes Lion, we reflect on the big themes of the festival and some of the work that won big.

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Get Advertising Smart - Cannes Lions 2018

  1. 1. GET ADVERTISING SMART Cannes Lions 2018
  2. 2. GET ADVERTISING SMART Cannes Lions 2018 Arguably, this year’s Cannes Lions festival was about less – the event was streamlined, cut from eight days to five; it was attended by around a quarter fewer people1 ; categories were cut and redefined, and each campaign was restricted to competing in only six awards – previously there was no limit. For an industry that is constantly pushing for more – more content, more data, greater reach – it was a refreshing change, and an opportunity to revisit which factors truly make work, work. As Jane Wakely, Mars Pet Nutrition chief marketing officer, explained, fewer categories this year removed some of the pressure that has only grown at previous Cannes’. "This year, lucky for us, the rules have changed… so it’s not about the numbers, it’s about the quality of the work."2 When you implement restrictions, as Wakely rightly pointed out, quality matters more than ever. And with this year’s focus on quality, BBDO flourished: BBDO took home Network of the Year for a record-setting seventh time; we won 99 Lions, including four Grand Prix, one Titanium and 14 Golds/Glass. 32 BBDO agencies were shortlisted for awards, 21 were awarded Lions, and AMV BBDO came second in Agency of the Year, with BBDO New York taking third place third. Our performance helped drive Omnicom to its first-ever Holding Company of the Year title, with Omnicom CEO John Wren commenting: “We are thrilled with the results at this year’s Cannes Lions Festival which is a testament to having the best creative talent in our industry.”3 TECH VS CREATIVITY The ongoing debate of what makes an ad work - technology or creativity - was apparent across Cannes this year. And while a balance between the two remains important, BBDO Worldwide’s CEO, Andrew Robertson, explained why creativity continues to be a crucial focus at BBDO when he took the stage around the mid-way point of the festival: “Work that has won [both effectiveness and] creative awards were 11x more effective than the ones that had just won effectiveness awards.” 1 Adweek – Cannes Lion Festival Attendance Reportedly Down 20-15% This Year 2 Campaign, What CMO’s are thinking in Cannes 3 Omnicom press release
  3. 3. GET ADVERTISING SMART Cannes Lions 2018 Studies show that creative work is more likely to be more effective on the business bottom line; that if we can evoke an emotion, the work is more likely to succeed. Andrew explained that this means that “we need to think differently about how we evaluate work.” We need to ask ourselves three questions: firstly “What is going to stimulate arousal?” Then “What feeling are we going to create? Because if we’re not going to create feeling, we’re not going to have an exceptional result.” Then and only then, we can ask the question we often ask first - “Is the message right?” And many clients agreed that the focus must remain on creativity. Samsung Chief Marketing officer Younghee Lee explained, "At the end of the day creative matters. Technology and data are important, but to cut through and break through is all about humanity and creativity."4 BBDO’S BIG WINNERS Trash Isles – Ladbible and Plastic Oceans, with AMV BBDO Ladbible and Plastic Oceans wanted to raise awareness and force a conversation about plastic trash in the oceans - the volume of which could cover an area the size of France, and is so dense that it has begun creating landmasses - by encouraging young people to lobby the United Nations to deem it a country of its own. The Trash Isles campaign brought this concept to life, with former Vice President Al Gore its first honorary citizen and Dame Judi Dench agreed to be "Queen of the Trash Isles". The campaign was awarded eight Lions, including two Grand Prix – one Grand Prix was for design, for the campaign’s official flag, currency, and passports, which were created from recycled materials. The second Grand Prix was for PR – Trash Isles launched in four countries but reached over 325 , with an engaging message that people wanted to share. The Talk – P&G, with BBDO New York P&G’s The Talk documents the conversations in which black parents explain racial bias to their children, and is just one part of P&G’s ‘My Black is Beautiful’ initiative. The incredible piece of storytelling won eight Lions, with one of these a Grand Prix in Film. 4 Campaign, What CMO’s are thinking in Cannes 5 The Drum – Cannes Lions WInners
  4. 4. GET ADVERTISING SMART Cannes Lions 2018 Marc Pritchard, P&G’s chief brand officer, explained why it mattered that The Talk was recognised at this year’s Cannes: “This honor reinforces the power and the responsibility of brands to be the courageous change we want and need in the world… We’re humbled that ‘The Talk’ sparked dialogue, opened hearts and changed minds.” 6 Blood Normal – Essity, with AMV BBDO Working with AMV BBDO, Essity wanted to make a powerful statement about destigmatizing menstruation. One element of the work that has been much-publicised is that it was the first advert to show period blood – a tactic that proved so effective that Glass Lion judge Madonna Badger explained that she herself had to go through the process of changing her own mindset as she judged the campaign: “At first, I thought Blood Normal was something that was just to shock people… In my mind, it was crazy to show blood, [but] that’s just my own bias and how I grew up. The [Essity] CMO mentioned that she said ‘I’m going to lose my job (over the campaign), [but] we’re going to do this anyway.’ She was brave.”7 Blood Normal won a Grand Prix Glass Lion, the category which launched in 2015 to confront gender bias and stereotypes in advertising. It also won a Titanium Lion, a category which was created to honour the work that doesn’t fit neatly into traditional categories, and the ideas that will create new avenues for advertising. We won big. The work, the work, the work, WORKS. DISCLAIMER The information and materials in this article are for general information purposes only. Whilst we try to ensure that all information and data in this article is accurate, complete and up to date, this article should not be relied upon and you should seek advice if you intend to use or rely upon any of the insights or data contained in this article. This article must not be shared, downloaded, copied or distributed for commercial purposes without the prior approval of BBDO. © BBDO 2018 All rights reserved. 6 Adweek – P&G Dominates at Cannes Lion, Winning 2 Grand Prix in Film, 7 Adweek – Shattering the Stigmas around Menstruation, This Campaign Just Won Cannes’ Glass Lion