July 19, 2022

Cannes Concepts: EVERSANA INTOUCH Unpacks the Cannes Lions  

The Cannes Lions International Festival of Creativity is the world’s largest gathering in the creative marketing community. Each year, the most extraordinary creativity and storytelling is awarded and discussed. And EVERSANA INTOUCH was there! Our Gold Clio-, and One-Show-winning “Erase the Line” campaign with The Chrysalis Initiative was short-listed here – quite an honor. But it was also an honor to network and learn from the best and brightest minds in advertising, marketing, technology and data science. We’d like to share three of the concepts we saw come through as top-of-mind, both with awards as well as with speakers and sessions:  

Inclusivity matters: Equity is getting more of the attention it deserves. 

We Are All Human and IPG CEOs Claudia Romo Edelman and Philippe Krakowsky met on the main stage to discuss Hispanic representation in advertising, marketing, and communications. Actor Regina Hall spoke on the impact of women on storytelling. Unilever discussed their efforts to eliminate stereotypes in their advertising. Additionally, award-winning creative that centered the need for greater inclusivity abounded: to mention three that struck us, Google’s Real Tone technology (making their phone cameras work better on darker skin tones), Adidas’ Liquid Billboard promoting its inclusive sized swimwear, and Harley-Davidson’s Tough Turban (innovating an impact-resistant option for Sikh riders whose turbans are an important part of their faith).  

We saw attention being paid on the need to expand the minds involved in creativity, to expand the voices that convey that creativity, and to expand the audiences to whom that creativity speaks. This is a welcome and necessary focus, and one we hope our clients and employees see reflected every day in our own work.  

What matters, matters: Purpose-driven communications – and that includes healthcare – are taking center stage.  

The “Health Grand Prix for Good” Lion went to a nutrition literacy campaign called “Lil Sugar, Master of Disguise.” Corona’s “Plastic Fishing Tournament” was another winner, as was Heineken’s “The Night Belongs to the Vaccinated” campaign. Many winners talked about many important issues, but one that particularly caught our attention came from Johnson & Johnson and focused on menstrual poverty, and menstrual dignity, in Brazil. They worked with UNICEF, as well as a Brazilian rap star who had herself experienced menstrual poverty, and brought light to a hot-topic political and social issue that 11 million people in Brazil alone are currently experiencing. 

As some jurors shared: brands that create a problem and solve it, when it’s not really a problem for anyone else, just don’t cut it. (Also, a fun fact reminding us that caring about healthcare is everywhere, with everyone, in every industry, no matter how busy they are: we learned that Grammy-winner Megan Thee Stallion got a bachelor’s degree in health administration last year from Texas Southern University [while sponsoring others with scholarships]!) 

Authenticity matters: Fancy can fall short, and real is preferred. 

Alex Morris from LADbible Group, one of the biggest content creators on social in the U.S., spoke on making authentic social content. He offered several examples of how a production approach that, traditionally, would seem counterintuitive, are more successful – for instance, using the native text and voice-over on TikTok instead of adding your own chosen font and narration. He even shared a case with their own LADstudios of their “Confessions” show, which, shot with high production value, was unsuccessful – but, reshot on an iPhone for TikTok, did very well. Shorter shortform is in. Entertainment is reinvented with every new trending sound (and to take advantage of trends today, you have to stay on top of content daily, not weekly). Know the audience, know the platform, and know how to reach that audience on that platform – it’s a simple thought, but one that’s vital across all media!  

You have to listen and learn. Leadership today requires a more humble approach than in generations past. Those who are leaders in a space often focus more on what they’re doing than on who they’re reaching: “influencer” is a passé term, and “creator” is preferred.  

It’s always energizing to the creative spirit to talk about why we do what we do, and why it matters so much. Cannes this year was a world-class example of that – and of what’s possible when we work together to keep reaching higher!