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Cannes Lions 2006: Of statistics, new introductions and seminars that keep the creative fires burning

21-June-2006
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Cannes Lions 2006: Of statistics, new introductions and seminars that keep the creative fires burning

Those who say that the Cannes Lions demonstrates the scale of the discipline aren’t exaggerating. The festival not only takes over the Palais des Festivals but also the adjoining areas at Cannes, France. Cannes Lions 2006 is no different. In fact, the year has seen some of the best statistics for the festival. The year has a few other firsts as well and the third day had a series of insights coming in the seminars organised.

Promo Lions has been introduced for the first time at this year’s Cannes Lions. According to the organisers, since the festival continued to embrace all channels of advertising, Promo Lions would award creative excellence in the areas of Sales Promotion, including Retail Marketing, Environmental Design, In-Store Advertising and Media. The fact that India has some potential in this can already be seen with JWT Chennai notching a Promo Lion.

Another first is the introduction of the Media Agency of the Year award, which would be given to the top scoring agency in the Media Lions category. This has been done given the fact that there has been a steady increase in the number of media entries – just to give an indication, from the 421 entries in 1999, when the category was instituted, there are 1,466 entries in 2006.

Unlike the previous years, where Press and Outdoor were adjudged by the same jury, this year, Cannes Lions instituted a separate jury for the Outdoor category. To encourage young creative minds, the Young Creative Films Competition has been introduced this year.

Regarding the events that take place at Cannes Lions, in addition to seminars, this year there would be workshops as well. In accordance, 11 half-day workshops have been introduced, covering subjects pertaining to the industry.

Over 10,000 visitors are attending the Cannes Lions this year. A record 24,863 entries from 81 countries are competing for the Lions. This is an increase of 9.67 per cent from last year. If the newly introduced category, Promo Lions is included, the increase is 12.5 per cent. All these are showcased at the Palais des Festivals.

The sessions on the third day of the Festival included ‘Initiative – A global marketer on Fast Forward’, Presented by Brian Perkins, Corporate Vice-President, Corporate Affairs, Johnson & Johnson. In his presentation, Perkins explained how his company dealt with the seismic shift in today’s high-tech emerging media world.

Gaming is a hot topic in India, but at Cannes Lions 2006 it was literally sizzling when Reza Ghaem-Maghami, Director, Proximity Paris, and Simon Bond, Head of International Clients (Asia), Proximity, spoke on the potential of the sector in the seminar on ‘Getting serious about playing games’.

A panel comprising the likes of Wenda Harris Millard, Chief Sales Officer, Yahoo; Irwin Gotlieb, CEO, GroupM; Andy Berlin, Chairman, The Voluntarily United Group of Creative Agencies; Mitchell Kanner, Founder & CEO, 2 Degrees Ventures; and Joanne K Bradford, VP, Global Sales & Trade Marketing, Microsoft Corp got together with moderator David Sable, Vice Chairman/COO, Wunderman, to speak on ‘Creative Redefined: Is Content Its New Definition?’

The panel discussed on how creative standards were not yet high in the digital space. One problem seen was that the lack of understanding of the user behaviour.

Jerri DeVard, SVP, Marketing & Brand Management, Verizon, and Laurence Boschetto, President & COO, Draft Inc, got together to speak on 10 ways via which an agency and a client can share a great relation for years. They enumerated immediate attraction, open, honest communication, keep it fresh. break out of character, surprise each other once in a while, challenge each other, motivate each other to take it to the next level, and recognise and celebrate each other’s successes.

The other points here included stay focussed, help each other on the right path, have a sense of humour, and keep things in perspective, strive for greatness in everything you do, and the final one was remember that your attitude should be that you’re in it for the long haul.

The final seminar of the day was ‘Innovation and Inspiration’ by J F Decaux, Chairman and Co-CEO, JCDecaux.

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