6 campaigns heavily debated at Cannes Lions 2018
Rich Levy is chief creative officer at FCB Health, who served as jury president for Pharma Lions at the Cannes Lions International Festival of Creativity. Reports in MM&M on six pieces of work that were hotly debated at the festival.
Novartis, Klick Health
This Bronze-Lion-winning entry was considered the most polarizing entry that won an award. In early rounds, it barely made the shortlist. In the medal round of voting, it did not get enough votes to win a Lion. At that point, a single juror came to this entry’s defense stating that here was a drug for a rare disease that had a fun, integrated campaign that got everyone’s attention. It was executed well and had excellent results Various jurors couldn’t get past the humor and others couldn’t get past the “I would never have approved this idea” syndrome that happens in a room of creative directors. However one juror not only liked it, but also loved it. And after three rounds of voting, that person helped it win an award.
Teva, Havas Lynx
Considering Havas Lynx won Healthcare Agency of the Year, I thought I’d highlight a campaign that didn’t win and reveal some of the discussion around it. Speed Donating, which discussed the importance of organ donation, was well known by the two jury members from the U.K. Both remembered seeing the press around it. The issue was the campaign’s craft was lacking in comparison to other pieces we saw. Nobody on the jury was a champion for the idea. While it had good results, it couldn’t get past its lack of unique craft.
The World’s Smallest Booth
Lartruvo, Area 23
Every now and then, the tenacity of a juror attempts to elevate a piece of work. That was true with this entry. While the campaign secured a Silver Lion pretty early in the process, one juror kept bringing it up for debate, insisting this idea was worthy of a Gold Lion. This juror tried four times, but the entry did not move up. At the end of the process, a great idea was awarded Silver. Still an amazing achievement for a convention booth.
Cochlear, CHE Proximity
A Hearing Test in Disguise
This is a prime example of entering your work in the perfect category. The campaign won a Gold Lion for industry craft and sound design. Why was this perfect? The entire idea hinged on the success of the sound design. And it was incredibly successful. This campaign had many champions. It was a top vote getter in every round of voting. A simple idea that was executed just right and wasn’t overproduced. In fact, the video literally spoke for itself. Great job.
Biogen, CDM New York
Zac’s Play Day
Every year, there’s a piece of work the agency almost didn’t enter that wins an award. Such is the case with the Silver-Lion-winning Zac’s Play Day. When speaking to the creative director, he told me this was a piece he recommended not be entered. Yet the local team really wanted to enter it. And they were right. Immediately, the jury fell in love with this simple story. The storybook was executed in a way to normalize the condition. The case film was especially powerful for a number of jurors. Throughout the medal round, this piece kept moving up the ladder — first shortlisted, then Bronze, and finally Silver. A deserving award for a well-done piece.
Elanco, Saatchi & Saatchi Düsseldorf
Elanco Animal Health
After a long day judging, sometimes just a fun piece does really well. Such is the case with the animal health entry from Elanco. Entered in the illustration craft category, this campaign was fun, entertaining, and well executed. In a category such as animal health, where there’s little competition, that’s very good. This was a winner. And in the jury room, everyone completely agreed. In fact, this campaign had the least amount of conversation of any entry. It scored well, was entered in the perfect category and subcategory, and won. Simple as that.