Social relationships of Lions : Social Development

Social relationships of Lions

Cannes-Lions-2014-Logo1As the Internet and digital technologies have disrupted everything around us (just ask Mary Meeker) is this the year they have finally broken through to disrupting mainstream advertising?

The annual 61 year-old festival brings together delegates from over 90 countries that attend seven days of seminars, talks, networking, and the prestigious central Cannes Lions awards.

As someone with a keen focus on (read: huge bias towards) the social and digital space, for me the mix of the event has always been skewed to underrepresent the category. Both when rewarding fully integrated social as well as reflecting social and digital innovation in its content and schedule.

Until this year.

Hear the Cyber Lions roar

In 2014, the previously smaller Cyber Lions awards have been revamped to include a specific social category, highlighting executions with social thinking at their core. The entries have been judged on metrics many of us have been living by for a while now – including engagement levels, social reach and quantifiable commercial results.

When it comes to the more well established categories, including creative effectiveness and Grand Prix, the industry is in agreement that the most likely award winners will be those campaigns that are truly revolutionary – industry stalwart Leo Burnett’s predicts those who will win big next week “defy categorization”, and are taking “lessons from the past and producing something entirely new— signposts to the future.”

Social platforms front and center at Cannes

The social platforms will be in the South of France actively building marketing campaigns, as well as relationships, with brand and agency partners. The Facebook team will be working on campaigns onsite with Nestlé, JWT, 360i and FCB Brazil to name a few. Instagram is holding similar sessions, focusing on taking advantage of the moment to work with brand partners.

Pinterest co-founder Ben Silberman is one of the high profile speakers at Cannes, taking to the stage to talk about the magic of discovery and the creative opportunities this represents for brands.

Twitter by now is well embedded – this year, CEO Dick Costello will participate in the annual Cannes Debate chaired by Sir Martin Sorrell. In a rather meta Cannes move, Sir Patrick Stewart, Aaron Paul, Al Roker star alongside ad and media execs in a documentary about Twitter to be screened during the festival

Vive La Revolution

I can’t help but draw a very high level parallel to another period of time that also took place in France – the French Revolution. This was a defining moment for the country at the end of a century. It marked a change in the old regime, the rise of democracy and nationalism and accelerated development of many other liberal ideologies around the world.

Now of course the Revolution of today is not the bloody mess of the 1700s, and has not required we guillotine all that has gone before to achieve change.

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