Cannes Lions: Why most hate it but I love it

21-05-2015 (07:39) - Gastcolumn

Cannes Lions, the biggest lottery of the (advertising) world. Or is it? How do you win at a festival that has over 500 categories to choose from and that sees your work compete with over 34.5k other entries? 
Most agencies around the world just spent the last few months on their Cannes Lions entries. I believe creating case studies is one of the most hated tasks in advertising. Because, after having put blood, sweat and tears (from frustration?) and months of effort into a great piece of work - now you need to explain what you did (and why it’s so awesome) in a two minute film and a hundred words. Oh, and in a way that jury members from around the world can understands what you’re talking about. Not an easy task. 
And don’t forget, trying to find a non-intrusive way to show results and media coverage (instead of an ugly cloud animation), to not annoy the judges too much… 
Awards, we hate it and we love it. 
In my case, I love it. Probably I’m one of a few in this crazy industry. From finding niche categories that fit like a glove, collecting assets, helping the team build their case, to finally those moments in Cannes when they announce shortlists and winners (and hopefully our work is on the list).  
But that is just the ‘before’…, when actually at the Festival I enjoy the exhibition; discovering ‘new’ campaigns, finding out more about the ones I liked, getting inspired by the winners and how they build their case. And, maybe even learn something to apply to next year’s batch of entries.  
Then, the winners. Wouldn’t everyone, who took the gamble of entering work in the hope of climbing the stage, like to be fly on the wall in the jury room – just to hear how they decide on gold, silver or bronze? Sometimes a campaign wins that ‘sure had a nice idea but is it really a Direct campaign’? Or work that makes me think, ‘would this have picked up gold if it was done by a big global brand instead of a charity’? 
Well, as the old saying goes ‘you need to be in it to win it’,  and we’ll know who that will be in a few weeks. 
Bonne chance! 

Over een maand is het weer tijd voor de Cannes Lions. In de maanden naar het festival toe zullen de ambassadeurs van de Orange Lions, juryleden en andere gastschrijvers hun licht schijnen op reclame, marketing en design en vooral: wat kunnen de Nederlandse creatieven in Cannes bereiken? Ditmaal is het woord aan Rose Zandvliet, Orange Lions-ambassadeur en PR-manager van Wieden+Kennedy Amsterdam.  

Rose Zandvliet, Orange Lions-ambassadeur en PR-manager van Wieden+Kennedy Amsterdam


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