What were the key themes you saw at Cannes Lions Live?
The main thing for me today was just a very humble reminder that in such difficult times in Covid our industry potentially has the ability to mean so much and have such an impact when it really holds a mirror to what we are and helps us elevate ourselves and become better. So in emotional times like this I guess we need a couple of things from brands. We want them to give us meaningful impact or distract us, entertain us, lift the mood.
What is probably more interesting in terms of new trends is for me a better world now and here, so the very kind of tangible version of taking a stand. It’s good to take a stand but what’s the impact that it’s having today?
And the fourth one is just those new connections. So much with Covid has accelerated around streaming, social, gaming we talked a lot about. So unsurprisingly some fantastic examples in that space.
What surprised you?
Well, I wasn’t expecting so much innovation in audio and I don’t know why. We had some fantastic examples of creativity and innovation in that space. There was some lovely meaningful work. For example, the Saylists example which would help speech impediment by transforming songs into speech Saylists, I guess, or the Woojer Sick Beats which is a fantastic partnership with Spotify where how can you take a really difficult moment in a child - who’s quite sick in terms of breathing problems - and make that into a really unique, fun and really positive experience in a really practical way.
What really impressed you?
My personal favourite by far is Burger King doing it again with a fantastic hack when they partnered with Stevenage F.C. So the one liner on the is that Stevenage are the bottom team in the English league. They sponsored that physically, so for real - probably quite cheap because it’s not the most famous team - and therefore they wanted that real sponsorship to be picked up in gaming and then they motivated all the players who would post online on social media any goals with that team and the sponsorship and would get free Burger King Whoppers.
So, it blew up and all of a sudden all the gamers wanted to play that team, to get the best players on that team and it’s such a smart way of hacking something and a really, really good understanding of consumers, of media consumption, being really smart and taking a challenge and flipping its on it’s head: starting with the real world to create what you want the virtual world. Genius.
What have you seen that will have the biggest implications for our industry over the next 12 months?
Connectivity and commerce together are here to stay. So, we had some great examples today with AB InBev supporting corner shop by creating this app because they were struggling in times of Covid but you wanted to go out and buy something really quickly and all of a sudden it became kind of your local Amazon just with this app supporting those shops.
And it’s really interesting because it really does resonate with our new iProspect proposition, bringing brand commerce really does resonate with what we’re trying to do with Future Lab to really make that inspiration come together.
The second one is just those new shared moments to tell stories. It’s much more than just a broadcast, passive thing. It’s using creativity with all those new moments to tell a story.
Lastly, it’s really nice and reassuring to see some really fantastic examples of how companies - not just brands, companies - can have really meaningful purpose. And in order to do that, unsurprisingly, we know, you have to transform your business first, and then you can transform your comms.