Grand Prix winner targets plight of Lebanon’s press THE WINNER of the Print & Publishing Grand Prix is a brave and thought-provoking campaign, created by Impact BBDO Dubai on behalf of Lebanese newspaper Annahar. Jury president Ali Rez, chief creative officer of Impact BBDO MENAP, said the campaign, ‘Newspapers Inside the Newspaper Edition’, showed how print continues to be a “powerful and disruptive force”.
The winning campaign was an attempt to draw attention to the loss of press freedoms In Lebanon. To achieve this, Annahar created a special edition which gave one page of editorial to six rival newspapers that had been shut down as a result of attacks on the press. Every page was printed in the original design of the closed newspapers, with content written by journalists connected with the publications.
The special issue sold out, generated $13m in earned media and sparked a political debate about freedom of speech. “It was everything a Cannes Lions Grand Prix should be,” Rez said. “It was one of those entries that transcends its category.”
Rez said his team was looking for authenticity of insight, great storytelling and interconnectedness with other media. “Overall it was a brilliant year, more explorative than the previous year.” Four Gold Lions were awarded to campaigns from France, Argentina, Chile and Norway.
Colenso BBDO’s innovative hack wows Radio & Audio jury
COLENSO BBDO Auckland’s ingenious campaign on behalf of mobile network Skinny has secured the 2023 Grand Prix in the Radio & Audio category.
Jury president Tseliso Rangaka, chief creative officer FCB South Africa, said: “Our mission was to find an entry that speaks to the strengths of the category but also gives an idea of where it is heading in the future — and the Grand Prix did that. In a sense, the Grand Prix was a coming of age for the category, showing how technology is here to stay. It was a simple idea at its core, but showed a lot of innovation.”
The trigger point for the Radio & Audio winner was actually an outdoor campaign, which invited passers-by to call a mobile number and read out the words on a series of posters. These were then recorded and used as a light-hearted radio ad campaign. “We loved the fact it combined media, and we loved the hack — the idea that the audience was co-creating the campaign, and they weren’t getting paid,” Rangaka said.
Rangaka said the jury was also looking for entries that were “a good fit for the category, a good fit for the brand, that drove results and generated creative envy.”
In addition to the Grand Prix, the jury awarded three Gold Lions to campaigns from Brazil, the US and Canada. In terms of trends, Rangaka noted “the return of levity. There were also some great examples of insightful storytelling”.
Special’s Brokenwood tie-in wins Health & Wellness prize ‘THE LAST Performance’, a quirky life insurance campaign from New Zealand’s Special, was a popular choice as Health & Wellness Grand Prix for 2023. Jury president Mel Routhier, chief creative officer VMLY&R Chicago, called the humorous campaign on behalf of insurance firm Partners Life “a well-crafted campaign that took us back to the roots of what Cannes Lions is all about — namely brand communications.”
An ingenious idea, ‘The Last Performance’ is built around a sponsorship between Partners Life and popular murder-mystery TV series The Brokenwood Mysteries.
In every episode of the show, someone is murdered and ends up on a mortuary slab. At the end of every episode, ahead of the credits, the corpse on the slab comes back to life and is given a short cameo in which they bemoan the fact they didn’t take out insurance. According to Routhier, the campaign prompted a 135% increase in visits to the client’s website. “It’s a great example of an idea that puts entertainment and advertising side by side. It’s such a smart execution that it really draws you in.”
Routhier praised the diversity of work and said it was extremely difficult to whittle down the category’s 1,300 entries to just 37 winners. Her jury awarded six Gold Lions and she reserved special praise for Nigeria’s first Bronze Lion, ‘Soot Life Expectancy’.
Among Gold Lions winners there were two wins for the UK, one for the UK/Canada, one for the UK/France and US, one for the US and one for France.
Dentsu celebrates Pharma Grand Prix
THE WINNER of the 2023 Pharma Grand Prix is ‘Scrolling Therapy’, a mobile-based innovation entered by Dentsu Creative on behalf of Eurofarma.
Jury president Joshua Prince, CEO of Professional Group, Omnicom Health Group, Global, said the Argentina/US entry was a “classic example of creativity as a force for good, where science and art come together to elevate the conversation”.
Aimed at Parkinson’s sufferers, ‘Scrolling Therapy’ is a beautifully simple design feature that sees facial expressions rather than fingers and thumbs used for scrolling down mobile phones. “People with Parkinson’s have an issue with facial masking,” said Prince, “a condition where immobilised muscles lead to seemingly blank expressions. Scrolling therapy forces people to use their faces to scroll, meaning that a simple everyday task is transformed into a form of regular exercise.”
As for general trends in the category, Prince said there was “a real increase in pharma entries as opposed to pharma-adjacent entries”. This suggests Cannes Lions’ efforts to create clear water between Pharma and Health & Wellness is working. The Pharma category was restructured this year to clearly distinguish it from its sister category, which does not face the same stringent restrictions. All work entered into Pharma Lions must be aimed at specific practitioners and patient groups in relation to the management of a disease or medical condition diagnosed and treated by a healthcare professional. The work must be created specifically to shape understanding of medical conditions, drive their treatment and/or advocate for the development or provision of those treatments.
He also said “we saw clients doing some very brave work. There were several examples of clients coming up with radically different creative ideas for the same communications challenge — in a bid to connect with audiences.”
On AI, he said: “We saw a lot of AI-based submissions, but there was also a lot of human creativity being used to address complex problems.”
Aside from the Grand Prix, there were also two Golds for Grey entry ‘The Most Beautiful Sound’ (US) and Intouch Solutions’ Inequality ‘You Can’t Ignore’ (US).
Uncommon’s great Outdoor win UNCOMMON Creative Studio has won the 2023 Outdoor Grand Prix for ‘British Original’, a humorous billboard campaign with no fewer than 512 different executions.
Jury President Javier Campopiano, worldwide chief creative officer at Grey and global chief creative officer of OpenX from WPP, said: “At first it seems like a classic construction. But beneath the surface it’s a campaign that carries so many different emotions and different ways of expressing the core idea.”
The campaign’s starting point resembles a customer survey, asking people to identify their reason for travel — business, leisure or other. In this case, the ‘other’ box is filled by funny phrases. So one billboard reads ‘Business. Pleasure. French Boys’. Another reads ‘Business. Pleasure. To put a few time zones between me and the annual report’.
Campopiano said the Outdoor category is one that offers up “so many possibilities. So one of the key goals of our jury was to represent as many as we could. Historically, it has been a static category, but now through technology it is so fluid. It’s one of the few media where people are not controlled by screens, it shows a different part of everyday life and that leads to distinct behaviour.”
Alongside the Grand Prix, there were nine Outdoor Gold Lions. Winning campaigns came from France (2), the UK (2), Argentina, Australia, Canada, Chile and South Africa. BETC Paris won three Gold Lions for distinct Lacoste executions.