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Campaign Brief (AUS/NZ) Online.
Campaign Brief Magazine : July August 2008
C ANNE S CANNES: THE While Australia and New Zealand did not enjoy a blockbuster year in terms of Lions, a record 400+ contingent - including a sizeable number of expats - made the trip this year. Hopefully half of them - those who registered as delegates - came away inspired, and determined to do better next year. CB asked this year’s jurors from Australia and New Zealand to recall their experiences at Cannes - and offer some words of advice on how we could do much better in 2009. spot for VW Polo perhaps deserved more; cer tainl y some juror s believed so. And whilst t he net e ncourages longer content, don’t assume peo- ple’s attention spans grow accord- ingly. Shorter and sharper would’ve helped most of th is year’s viral and internet entries. If the South Americans operated some clandestine vot ing block I wasn’t aware of it . Their work won because the j udges from Europe, Asia, Australia, New Zealand, the UK, Africa and the US voted for it. BBDO New York was runaway agency of the year , wi th BBDO deserved winners of network of the year. Danny Searle helped collect that one. I’m sure he bought those white pants just for the occasion. As for the re st of the festival, FILM JURY TED HORTON BIG RED GROUP, MELBOURNE YOU READ ABOUT IT. They warn you about it. But nothing can quite prepare you for it. Six da ys, a da rk ro om, y ou, a bunc h of stra ngers and 5, 000 + commercials. Welcome to Cannes. This year, the film ju ry awarded two Grand Prix. One to Halo3, the othe r to Cadbur y Go ri lla. T wo equally bril liant pieces of work, occupyi ng two totally dif ferent worlds. One an extraordinary demonst ra- tion o f multi- channel m arketing; the other a testament to the power of o ne simpl e pi ece of br ill iant broadcast advertising. Some might think Hal o3 is the rule breaker of the two. But in truth it breaks none. It just pla ys by the new rules and it does i t bigger and better than anyone. Goril la is the real rul e b reaker. Anyone who’s ever had to do battle with t he drea ded Li nk Tes t wil l attest to that. Prior to judging, film an d press jury chairman, Craig Davis remind- ed jur y members that our role was simply to ce lebrate grea t work. In awarding two Grand Prix we did just 24 CAMP AI GN B RIEF that. The decision to award both was unanimous; not because the jury couldn’ t separate t hem, more because we didn’t think i t fair to even try. You might think otherwise. Schwe ppes ‘Bu rs t’s Gold w as never in dispute. It, like Gorilla, is a wonderful demonstr atio n o f th e pure essence of a bra nd. Thrifty’s ‘Birthday Girl’ was always going to pick up something; s ilver se emed fair. The jury was split on Carlton ‘Sky Troo p’ , b ut no t eno ugh to deny it bronze. The Kiwis were unfortunate not to pick up a gong or two. I tried my best to get ‘Pink Batt s’ ac ross the line. But as is o ften the case nowa- days, my best simply wasn’ t good enough. Campaigns for Burger King and Crest toothpaste were standouts, as was the Voyeur campaign for HBO; it fought Halo3 all the way to the finish line. Banking, f inance and insurance is one category crying o ut fo r go od work and the alcohol/beer category is desperate for the next big thing. Maybe this time it’ll be a littl e ad with a big idea and not the o ther way ‘round. Standouts were scarce in the auto- motive category. ‘Night d riving’, a wonderful spot for VW and Skoda ‘Cak e’ be ing the two obvi ous exceptions. And the ‘Si nging dog’ you’d best ask somebody else. I arrived S aturday afternoon, had dinner with the jury that evening, started judging at 9:00 the next morning and didn’t stop judging until 11:30 the following Saturday morn ing jus t i n time for t he evenings awards presentation before flying out Sunday lunchtime. Not that I could afford too much spare time in Cannes. It’s ‘Warren Brown was seen lookin g for free drinks expensive’. One ines capabl e fact abou t Cannes is that it’ s about much more than ads and metal. It’s a true advert ising festival. New media dominates much of the seminars, lectures and press. For the majority of my career, the choi ce of media channels was so limited that creativity was measured by the ability of the writer and art di rect or to make thei r mes sage st and-ou t. Today, cr eati vi ty i s increasingly measured by the ability to choose the right channel. [Maybe Mars hal l McLuhan was ri ght ?] Even t he You ng Li ons br ief required a spot to be created using a mobi le phone; oops, sorry, make that a personal, hand-h eld, multi- facet ed, digi tal communicat ions and entertainment centre. By week’s end I found myself lik- ing the Ca nnes experience much more than I tho ught I would. I learnt stuff. I made new friends. I was inspired by some really great work an d t ook comfor t in t he knowledge that the crap work still outweighed the good. But that’ s advertising for you, even in Cannes. JU L Y /AUGU ST 2 0 08
May June 2008