Through the eyes of a juror: Lulu Raghavan reflects on Cannes Lions 2018

Guest Column: Lulu Raghavan, Managing Director, Landor India, says being a juror at the Cannes Lions International Festival of Creativity is a truly transformational experience

e4m by Lulu Raghavan
Published: Jun 26, 2018 8:55 AM  | 6 min read

I’ve just returned from the Cannes Lions International Festival of Creativity, which brings together the best creative minds from over 100 countries for a week of inspiration and celebration against the backdrop of the gorgeous French Riviera. This year I didn’t just attend the festival as a delegate—I had the distinct pleasure of being a juror on the Cannes Lions Design Jury and the Young Lions Design Jury.

For delegates, Cannes is a highly enriching experience. You meet diverse people, gain exposure to the best work from around the world, find inspiration in great speakers, and create incredible memories with your colleagues all week long.

As a juror, Cannes is truly transformational.

You spend five full days (and sometimes nights) with the best minds in your field, debating, discussing, and dissecting every piece of work (and there were more than 1,200 Design entries this year) to determine which get shortlisted and which win awards. We had a truly eclectic Design Jury of 15 jurors from 15 countries—a mini United Nations, if you will. There was amazing chemistry established from the get-go, with fantastic camaraderie and deep respect for each other’s perspectives—even if some pieces of work were polarising. Individually and collectively, we took our responsibilities as jurors extremely seriously, using careful and purposeful thought about the messages we were sending with each piece of work we awarded. It was such a gift to get to know this special group of jurors, who are as passionate and obsessed with their craft as I am.

Seeing the future at Cannes

This year marked one of the most exciting and important Cannes editions yet. With entire industries being transformed at the speed of light, it’s easy to hold a pessimistic view of the future of branding, innovation, marketing, or advertising. So it was heartening to see the triumph of the human spirit in its constant pursuit for ingenuity. Personally, I walked away super-charged about the power of creativity and its ability to create commercial value and social impact. Brands have an opportunity now—more than ever before—to make a meaningful difference.

Top trends and themes from Cannes

It was wonderful to see design being called upon to create social impact and spark important conversations. As jurors, we saw a range of work addressing many pressing global issues, from gender inequality to environmental concerns, such as the vast quantities of plastic damaging our earth. There were also plenty of brilliantly simple ideas: Changing a logo to signify a Lioness, the McDonald’s logo flip, or the Lacoste work, to name a few. Each piece forced reconsideration of the issues they addressed.

I was thrilled to see technology used in the service of brand and design, rather than just for its own sake. Consider the Intel Drones, which lit up the Winter Olympics and created magic for viewers on-screen while representing the Olympics in a highly innovative way. Brands also uniquely engaged with their superfans to strengthen their brand communities. For example, Xbox Design Labs’ Fanchise Model allowed fans to exercise their creativity while earning money. We also saw how political parties have begun to effectively use the power of design to create emotional connections with their audiences. The Dark Diaries by the Free Democratic Party in Germany is an excellent example of this trend.

Grand Prix in Design

This year’s Grand Prix in Design went to the Trash Isles by LADBible. What an outstandingly innovative way to make an important issue visible. Plastic pollution in the oceans has accumulated and is now larger than many countries. So creating an official country registered with the UN was a big act to show the absolute seriousness of the impending environmental disaster. The beauty of the work is not only in the big idea, but also in the details. From the design of the passports and stamps to the flag and currency notes (appropriately named debris), the execution was impressive. Our jury wanted to send a strong signal about the use of design to spark meaningful conversations and drive social change. We believe that this piece of work has tremendous potential to change attitudes around the world and we can’t wait to see how it evolves.

My top two from Design

Two pieces of work that personally spoke to me were Playdoh’s Gallery of Emerging Species and Nike’s The Lioness Crest.

I absolutely loved the Playdoh work—it’s such a great fit with what the brand stands for (a canvas for your imagination), and it has a fun and quirky idea at its heart. It was exquisitely executed as an online gallery using a very clean and simple interface that gives space for the different species to shine. The Woodywood Beaver, the Sunflower Lion—the names and descriptions of each species are a true delight and fire up your imagination about all the potential species you could create yourself. Playdoh’s Facebook page allows consumers to actually do so, turning the Gallery of Emerging Species into a highly interactive idea that is joyous and fun for kids and adults alike.

The Lioness Crest is also a very strong piece of work. The act of changing the logo from a lion to a roaring lioness may be a simple one, but it signifies much more than a logo change. It is a strong signal to young women (and men) around the world about the drive for greater equality in sport. The identity system has been beautifully executed and is a great reflection of the strength, elegance, and power of the Dutch Women’s football team. I hope this will be a true catalyst for change.

Parting thoughts

Leaving Cannes, I felt fully charged to share my experiences with colleagues and clients back home. Not only was the work impressive, the applications of technology, the care for our world, and the creative activations of the ideas left a tangible impact, making me excited about what’s to come in our industry. I walked away from Cannes with fantastic memories, fantastic learnings, and a direct-dial to a new group of incredible friends—an experience I wouldn’t trade for the world.

For a visual journey of my Cannes experience, check out my Instagram, @Lulu.Raghavan.
(The author is Managing Director, Landor India)

Disclaimer: The views expressed here are solely those of the author and do not in any way represent the views of

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G-Shock India launches campaign with Shubman Gill

The campaign ‘Rise Above the Shocks’ has been conceptualised by Wieden+Kennedy India

By e4m Staff | Oct 4, 2023 2:52 PM   |   2 min read

G-Shock India launches campaign with Shubman Gill

Wieden+Kennedy India has unveiled 'Rise Above The Shocks', a campaign designed to encourage individuals to tackle adversities with determination and resilience.

Embodying G-SHOCK's ethos of constant evolution and Shubman Gill's relentless spirit, the campaign portrays the GA-2100 series as a symbol of survival in the face of challenges.

The campaign celebrates the collaboration of these two entities with 3 impactful films.

The campaign will go live across channels including social media, OOH and OTT amongst others.

Hideki Imai - Managing Director, Casio India said: “We mark a pivotal moment in the journey of G-SHOCK in India, inspired by the core values of Absolute Toughness and the spirit of ‘never giving up’. Our 'Rise Above the Shocks' campaign with Shubman Gill taps into the Indian ethos of perseverance and resilience, aligning seamlessly with G-SHOCK's reputation for toughness and durability. We couldn't be happier to spearhead this campaign with the reigning Youth Icon from the cricketing world, Shubman Gill, who embodies the same unyielding character emblematic of our timepieces. Collectively, our mission is to celebrate the DNA of resilience and grit amongst the GenZ and millennial audiences in India by being a talisman for their ability to persist through life’s trials and emerge stronger and brighter, just like the G-SHOCK brand.”

Speaking about the campaign, Kapil Batra - National Creative Director, Wieden+Kennedy India said - "Shubman is called ‘The Prince of Indian Cricket’, for a reason. He has overcome challenges, won battles, and shattered perceptions to earn this title. In a similar vein, the

G-SHOCK has gained its reputation as one of the toughest watches for good reason. Its toughness is a result of rigorous testing and an exceptional ability to endure any shock. We thoroughly enjoyed working on this campaign. It's a celebration of Shubman's and G-Shock's shared ability to rise above any shock, presented in a visually captivating way, by the filmmaker Raylin Valles and his team at 10 Films.” 

Shreekant Srinivasan - Head of Business, Wieden+Kennedy India said - “At Wieden + Kennedy we help brands discover the power of their voice, and that’s what we want to achieve with ‘Rise above the Shocks’. Working around the business challenge of making an iconic brand relevant to the Gen-Zs of India, this campaign aims to position the brand as more than just timepieces; but as fashion statements and symbols of individuality.”

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No complaint received over Amitabh Bachchan Flipkart ad: ASCI

As per ASCI, the case has been referred to the Central Consumer Protection Authority

By Tanzila Shaikh | Oct 4, 2023 2:27 PM   |   3 min read

Amitabh Bachchan Flipkart ad ASCI

Retail store owners selling smartphones have raised concerns over a recent Flipkart ad in which actor Amitabh Bachchan is promoting online deals on mobile phone purchases. In the ad, he is seen saying: ‘Dukaan pe nahi milne wala’.  

The All India Mobile Retailers Association (AIMRA) has asked leading smartphone brands to “raise collective voice against such misleading ads”. They have been saying that such ads hurt small businesses.

The video has been made private by Flipkart. However, it is still out on social media.

In a letter to Bachchan, the association has asked for the video to be taken down. e4m has a copy of this letter that is on AIMRA’s X account.

The actor has also received a letter from the Confederation of All India Traders (CAIT), denouncing his endorsement. “We are highly disheartened to witness your recent advertisement by Flipkart…” the letter said.

Bachchan and Flipkart haven’t responded to these letters.

When asked about taking actions on the ad, ASCI said that no complaints have been registered on the ad so far. “The ASCI code makes it clear that any claims or comparisons made in advertisements must be truthful and should be capable of substantiation. Additionally, ASCI's guidelines for celebrities in advertising require celebrities to do due diligence to ensure that all claims and comparisons made in the advertisements they appear in should be capable of substantiation and not be deceptive,” the self-regulatory body said.

As for AIMRA, it has registered a complaint to CCPA (Central Consumer Protection Authority).

Confirming this, the ASCI spokesperson said, “The specific case has reportedly been referred to the Central Consumer Protection Authority (CCPA). The CCPA guidelines make it mandatory for advertisements not to make misleading statements in advertisements. In addition, the Consumer Protection Act also provides for fine or suspension of endorsers in case they have not done due diligence. After due investigation and ascertaining the necessary facts, the CCPA may take appropriate action as per its process.” 

e4m has also reached out to CCPA and Rohit Kumar Singh, Secretary, DoCA, on the same. This copy will be updated as and when we get a response from them.

ASCI CEO Manisha Kapoor further said: “Due diligence by celebrities is an important aspect that needs to be ingrained in the system. ASCI’s own data suggests a huge increase in misleading ads that feature celebrities. Very few celebrities do due diligence, and many of them just take an indemnity from the advertiser in case the ad gets into trouble. Such actions may protect the celebrity financially but do not count towards the fulfilment of their responsibility towards consumers.”

Several social media users also posted against the ad, asking Bachchan to take responsibility for his actions.

e4m has written to Flipkart but is yet to get a response.

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Godrej Agrovet gets Jimmy Shergill to endorse cattle feed

The brand has launched a campaign about the importance of cattle health

By e4m Staff | Oct 4, 2023 12:53 PM   |   1 min read


Godrej Agrovet Limited (GAVL) has launched a campaign with actor Jimmy Shergill. The campaign aims to raise awareness around the importance of quality cattle feed.

Sandeep Singh, CEO, Animal Feed Business, GAVL, said, “Traditionally, Indian farmers have focused on enhancing milk production with less priority to cattle health. Recognizing this oversight, our campaign aims to shift the perspective by highlighting the significance of prioritizing cattle well-being and thinking of the long-term. The same will ensure the well-being and reproductive health of cattle, optimize milk yield, and enable farmers to sustain dairy farming.”

To run across television and social channels, the campaign strives to create a paradigm shift where the health and welfare of cattle become the centre.

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Ranveer Singh and Flair celebrate the charm of writing

The campaign intends to remind people of the emotional power of handwritten words

By e4m Staff | Oct 4, 2023 12:11 PM   |   2 min read

ranveer singh

Flair Writing Industries Limited (FWIL) has introduced its latest brand campaign, 'Bas Flair Aur Kuch Nahi' with actor Ranveer Singh. 

"In a fast-paced digital age, where technology often takes centre stage, Flair Writing Industries Limited (FWIL) believes that there is a timeless charm to putting pen to paper. The brand has also dropped another TVC ‘Likh Ke Du Kya’ which highlights the unique feature of Flair Writometer, emphasizing its ability to write for a long duration showing Ranveer Singh in his signature high-spirited style as the brand Flair Writometer can write up to 10,000 meters," said the brand.

Through these ads, FWIL is on a mission to remind people of the emotional power of handwritten words. This campaign will evoke cherished memories associated with writing by hand, from love letters exchanged in school to postcards from family vacations, to transport you to another time, to bring back fond memories, and to connect with your inner storyteller. 'Bas Flair Aur Kuch Nahi' is a celebration of the rich history of writing instruments and the personal narratives they hold," said Mr. Mohit Rathod – Director, Flair Writing Industries Limited.

For decades, FWIL’s brands have commanded credibility in the market due to their emphasis on innovation and design, which has further driven brand recognition and customer loyalty. The latest TVC campaign lays an emphasis on their commitment to delivering quality writing instruments that understand the needs of their customers.

Bollywood Superstar Ranveer Singh shared, “Flair Writing Industries Limited (FWIL)” is highlighting the celebration of nostalgia, which is a strong sentiment and inviting individuals of all generations to reconnect with the simple pleasure of using a pen. I am extremely happy to be associated with “Flair”, our homegrown writing instrument brand which has touched millions of hearts over the years with its wide range of offerings".

The TVC captures Ranveer Singh in his signature style, showcasing the innovation, design and quality of Flair pens in various settings, from the boardroom to the classroom, and from the office to the studio.

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In redBus’ festive films, Allu Arjun is bridging gulf between people and their loved ones

The campaign, by Leo Burnett Orchard, has two films

By e4m Staff | Oct 3, 2023 5:50 PM   |   4 min read


redBus, an online bus ticketing platform, has rolled out a marketing campaign, ahead of the much-awaited festive season. In order to communicate and engage with its wide customer base, the online bus ticketing major roped in actor Allu Arjun, who is also the enterprise’s brand ambassador, to deliver two staggering ad-films.

The campaign’s narrative connects with redBus’ broader messaging of ‘Apno ko, sapno ko kareeb laye’, which positions redBus as an enabler that bridges the gulf between people and their loved ones, as well as their professional aspirations, by making their travel a convenient, seamless affair. It further deliberates on two major aspects of the bus seat reservation process that makes a huge difference to travellers - the option of selecting the desired seats, as well as the discounts on offer. In keeping with the playful character of the ads, the two 30-second ad-films were released innovatively as a ‘leak’ on fan pages of the Icon Star on Instagram.


About the ad-films:

One of the two ad-films is set at a bus station in Indore and revolves around the protagonist, Allu Arjun, who plays a second generation entrepreneur, with a vision to make it big and believes in providing for his employees to garner their loyalty and perseverance. Though employee welfare is a priority for him and he offers his employee the comfort of a luxury AC bus for work related travel, he is smart enough to also net a good discount while booking the seat on redBus- a win for both. This film highlights the benefits associated with booking a seat on redBus, for the discounts on offer. The film also casts popular actor Bharat Bhatia alongside Allu Arjun.

The second ad-film is set at a bus station in Nashik and stars Allu Arjun in the lead, along with popular actor Girish Kulkarni in a supporting role. This film enunciates the pride and emotions associated with people and culture, as well as their dreams and aspirations and connects it with the option of seat selection on redBus. Allu Arjun plays the leader of a dhol tasha band. When a fellow traveler, played by Girish Kulkarni, complains about the dhol occupying space, Allu explains that their dhol is not “samaan” (luggage) but a symbol of “sammaan” (pride). The film also elaborates on the seat selection feature offered by redBus. Viewers also witness the route of the bus - ‘Nashik to Pune’, emphasizing the fact that redBus undertakes bookings on short routes.   

Thus, the first film highlights the aspect of savings, while booking on redBus and the second one focuses on the convenience of choosing a seat while booking, tying both narratives to the larger narrative of ‘Apno ko sapno ko kareeb laye’.

The campaign is created by Leo Burnett Orchard.

Speaking on his role in redBus’ ad-films, Icon Star, Allu Arjun and the brand ambassador of redBus, stated, “The ad films for redBus truly resonate with me at a personal level as they encapsulate the essence of bringing dreams closer by establishing a link between people and their aspirations. As an actor, I always seek roles that inspire, and these concepts have given me the opportunity to express myself by living the characters and I’m proud to be a part of this journey with redBus. I look forward to my fans as well as customers of redBus, viewing the films and hope to connect with them at an emotional level.”

Pallavi Chopra, Chief Marketing Officer, at redBus, stated, "These ad films represent a pivotal moment in redBus' journey, as we focus on regions with immense growth potential. Our objective was not only to create captivating narratives, but also to connect with viewers emotionally. The ad-films showcase redBus not just as a ticketing platform, but as an enabler of dreams, aspirations, and cherished moments. We have strategically aligned cultural nuances and aspirations with the objective of engaging with a growing cohort of audiences that take pride in what they do, while also being conscious of their spends. Allu Arjun has done a fantastic job of leading the narratives and I’m sure the ad-films will resonate well with bus travellers.”

The ad-films will be released across TV and digital media channels across states and regions, including, Maharashtra, Tamil Nadu, Karnataka, Kerala, Madhya Pradesh, Uttar Pradesh, Rajasthan, Andhra Pradesh, Gujarat and Delhi among others, and will be showcased in Hindi, Marathi, Telugu, Gujarati, Bengali, Tamil, Kannada & Malayalam.



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Signatureglobal TVCs have Vidya Balan advocating ‘independent living’

The TVCs use humor and satire to drive the message that Signatureglobal offer a unique opportunity for people to enjoy their own space

By e4m Staff | Oct 3, 2023 4:15 PM   |   2 min read


Saignatureglobal, a real estate developer, has announced the launch of two TV commercials i.e. “Bride” and “Maid”. The TVCs challenge societal norms while entertaining, epitomizing their commitment to redefine independent living.

The unifying thread throughout these TVCs reinforces the notion of 'independent living,' advocating for a lifestyle free from societal constraints and the need for comparisons with neighbours. Each TVC uses humor and satire to drive the message that Signatureglobal offer a unique opportunity for people to enjoy their own space, be it in academics, household help, personal choices, or even their living arrangements, all while emphasizing the importance of living life independently and responsibly.

In these captivating TVC series, Vidya Balan takes center stage as the brand ambassador of the company and protagonist, bringing her charismatic presence to the screen. She is joined by a stellar ensemble cast featuring talents such as Archana Puran Singh, Shweta Tripathi, Namit Das, Aryan Prajapati, Akashdeep Sabir, Shehnaaz Deshpande, Bunty Kapor, Bhavna Makhija, Abhilasha Poul and other exceptional performers. Together, they breathe life into Signatureglobal's distinctive vision for independent living.

Talking about the new campaign, Pradeep Aggarwal, Founder & Chairman, Signatureglobal (India) Ltd. said, Our TVC series boldly redefines independent living, challenging societal norms. Homes should be spaces free from comparisons and judgments. Our independent floors and exclusive apartments offer true freedom and independence. We aim to empower individuals and families to live life on their terms, liberated from societal expectations. At Signature Global, we offer more than just homes; we provide a judgment-free lifestyle."

These TVCs are conceptualized by Mr. Arnab Chatterjee (Tree Design) and Shivil Gupta, and came in existence under the skillful direction of Siddhant Tiwary and Saurabh Ghosh, ensuring a perfect blend of humour and heart.

These Ad films will be showcased on all major News Channels along with various social media platforms like Youtube, Facebook and Instagram etc. In the past, the brand has come up with innovative campaigns which have garnered great response from the public time & again.


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Edelweiss Mutual Fund says 'SIP Se Sab Hoga'

The campaign has been conceptualized internally by Edelweiss team

By e4m Staff | Oct 3, 2023 1:22 PM   |   2 min read

Edelweiss Mutual Fund says 'SIP Se Sab Hoga'

Edelweiss Mutual Fund has launched 'SIP se sab hoga'. The two TVC films are designed to celebrate the wisdom of financial insight and highlight the transformative power of Systematic Investment Plans (SIPs) in achieving short- and long-term investment goals.

The narrative of 'SIP se sab hoga' revolves around two unique family settings, each showcasing,
the potential of SIPs in a distinctive way. The campaign is conceptualized internally by Edelweiss MF’s marketing team. Edelweiss MF is using 360-degree communication to promote ‘SIP se sab hoga’ campaign, from Television, Digital, Print, and Outdoor.

Speaking about the campaign, Niranjan Avasthi, SVP and Head- Products, Marketing and Digital at Edelweiss AMC said, our new TVC campaign film celebrates the wisdom that transcends generations and highlights the transformative power of SIPs. At Edelweiss Mutual Fund, we believe in empowering individuals to achieve their long- and short-term life goals, whether it's a road trip, owning a house, or pursuing higher education. SIPs provide the financial foundation to turn these dreams into reality. The films are testament to the idea that financial planning can be both educational and enjoyable.”

In the first story, a mother and her enthusiastic yet not-so-athletic son visit an astrologer. The astrologer predicts a triumphant sports career for the boy, leaving the mother perplexed. Enter Mr. Sharma, a wise family friend, who explains that with SIP, anything is possible, emphasizing the essence of self-discovery, determination, and the unpredictable nature of life.

The second story unfolds with a family excitedly preparing for a road trip to Manali. However, a comical mishap occurs when the young grandson, Rahul, accidentally damages the car's side mirror. Amidst the chaos and frustration, Mr. Sharma intervenes, sharing the power of SIPs with the family. As the film progresses, Dadi takes the driver's seat, and Rahul pushes the car forward, symbolizing unity and empowerment.

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