The Cannes Lions International Festival of Creativity is a celebration of business’s human element. Find out the highlights and trends from this year’s festival.
Every year, thousands of advertisers, marketers, creative agencies and consultants descend upon Cannes for a weeklong celebration of all the things that are wonderful about the industry. They also take the opportunity to discuss new ideas, find new ways to connect, dole out awards, and reflect on what makes people pay attention.
In short, The Cannes Lions International Festival of Creativity shines a light on the human element of business. Annalect was there and partnered with sister agencies Resolution Media and Fleishman Hillard to host a newsroom called StoryConnect, where we rapidly produced content and distributed across social in a targeted amplified way. Check out the infographics and videos that we produced around Music, Social and Influencers here.
In addition to StoryConnect, we had a chance to listen to and interact with other key figures in the industry. Here’s what we heard and saw as we walked the floors of the Palais des Festivals:
Data Enters New Business Realms
Data as a creative tool was a hot topic throughout the Cannes event, with a multitude of speakers getting starry-eyed about the prospects data will be able to offer while advocating that businesses adopt data into every step of their processes.
Using data in this way does not just direct business actions like targeting or calculated use of language, it can also help brands craft more emotional content. As physicist and professor Brian Cox put it: “Every creative person needs data to keep them rooted in reality.”
Artificial Intelligence (AI) Opens New Doors
Along with the piles of data we have at our fingertips, the industry is creating new ways to manipulate it and automate processes that often took many hours of human labor to accomplish. Using AI, marketing companies can make observations that would otherwise not be possible without millions of digital synapses firing at once.
Decision making will begin to transform from frontal cortex faculties towards algorithmic deductions — all while still leaving room for innovation and human ingenuity. Speaker Mike Cooper from British media agency PHD put it best when he said, “AI is not just heading for our industry, it’s going to pass right through our backyard.”
Data Reaching Geese
Millennials, frequently referred to as unicorns, are a tough market to crack for some, and part of the trouble appears to stem from the demographics’ need for the perfect mix of cues before they will take interest in an ad or product. One way to “shortcut” touching upon all of these cues is to resonate with one major influencer, the proverbial “golden goose” that leads others to buy.
In truth, this goose is not one single “hip kid” but rather anyone within the realm of a consumer’s life, especially their digital life. Several brands used this approach to their advantage to alter perception of their product and open up new pathways of discussion. Netflix France observed two years’ worth of conversational data to create a targeted DOOH signage campaign that more than doubled their brand awareness in just three months.
The Tennessee Department of Tourism utilized both travel and demographic data to identify 11 regional markets within a reasonable drive of the state. Targeting these markets, audiences were delivered vacation guides and one-minute videos with the exact roads and destinations travelers could use. Travel volume increased almost 11%.
Melanoma Australia located people using hashtags about their days in the sun on social sites like Instagram so that _melanoma would “like” someone and automatically leave a message about how they were there, too. Popular tags such as #dayatthebeach, #tanning and #sunkissed were met with _melanoma responding #killerweather and other phrases in an ironic way that helped spread awareness of Australia’s 1,500 melanoma deaths a year.
Campaigns like these channel volumes of data in ways that touch audiences and motivate key influencers in every group to sit up and take notice. Let the thought leaders of Cannes 2015 inspire your brand to seek out new ways of connecting and resonating with your audience through data.