The Roaring Lions of 2016
Often dubbed the ‘Oscars of the Advertising World’, Cannes Lions is in full swing for its 63rd year and whilst I’m not guzzling lashings of Rosé and partying on the beach in the sunshine, I am loving lapping up what’s on the agenda. As usual it seems that surrounding the fanfare of the Palais, where the awards are doled out, there is a whirlwind of events, speakers and networking happening. The festival is a marketplace of ideas and clearly serves many purposes but whilst I sit at my desk, opposed to on the shores of Cannes, for me it’s primarily about celebrating the awards. There have been over 40,000 award entries submitted this year – so many to choose, and learn from, but here are my top three favourite Grand Prixe winners so far…
1. Outdoor Lions – Brewtrolium by Heineken New Zealand
Drink more beer, save the world! An irresistible appeal for beer drinkers and an ingenious campaign. DB Export, a brewery in New Zealand, announced last July it had created a biofuel made using leftover beer ingredients from brewing called “Brewtroleum.”
2. Creative Effectiveness Lions – Monty’s Christmas by John Lewis
The nation’s favourite penguin won big at Cannes and the award is was so well deserved because Monty warmed the hearts of consumers from across the globe – not only was the campaign creatively outstanding, but it delivered significant sales results for John Lewis.
3. PR Lions – The Organic Effect by Swedish Coop
This was an idea that focused on the benefits to a family’s health when they switch to an organic diet. A powerful idea that boosted sales of organic food in Sweden.
I have to touch on the mere five of the 84 PR Lions that were awarded to PR agencies this year because advertising, marketing and digital agencies secured the bulk of the Lions on offer – having also dominated the shortlist. In my opinion the underperformance of PR agencies is due to advertising firms upskilling to embrace earned media. They are setting up PR, digital and comms teams and employing people who would traditionally join PR agencies, perhaps because advertising needs to be propelled by earned media, to leverage talkability. PR agencies have the creative capabilities that ad agencies do, for after all they are employing our talent, so it’s up to us as an industry to better show off our work each year in Cannes and I hope that next year Cirkle will be there to do just that.