Arati Rao Shephali Bhatt
Jun 23, 2012

Campaign@Cannes Blog: On good advertising and two great advertising men

Takeaways from the '30 Years Of Creative Chaos, with Sir John Hegarty and Dan Wieden' seminar, and India-spotting on day six of Cannes Lions 2012

Campaign@Cannes Blog: On good advertising and two great advertising men


It was 45 minutes of awesomeness in the Dan Wieden and Sir John Hegarty session on Friday, moderated by Campaign APAC’s editorial director Atifa Silk. The seminar celebrated 30 years of their work (both started their agencies within days of each other).
Here’s some of the work they showcased and what they had to say about that piece of work and each other’s:
Nike – W+K
Dan Wieden: “Nike isn’t afraid of controversy and their bravery showed in this spot.”
Audi – BBH
John Hegarty: “Audi was one of our founding clients, and it was the underdog. We launched the car by showing someone rejecting it.”
P&G – W+K
JH: “I believe advertising is 80 per cent idea and 20 per cent execution. In the YouTube age of ‘Let’s get it out’, direction of that spot was critical because the vomit factor was high.”
DW: “The idea is the beginning of something; it’s the flesh you put on it that makes it. In the fast and furious digital age, the power of storytelling is to make sure the emotions are relevant.”
Google Chrome – BBH
JH: “Being a tech company, Google was perceived as less emotional; this campaign humanised the brand.”
Old Spice – W+K
JH: “When something’s great, we really f****** hate it.”
Xbox – BBH
JH: “When we presented the script, the client said, ‘Are you serious?’ and said no. We asked him to let us put it online, and it went viral, then went on TV. Sometimes there are other ways in, so you should never give up.”
Levi’s – W+K
DW: “We had to live up to the work of BBH. Planning made a huge difference in this campaign, and the summary was, ‘Prepare to pioneer’. The brief was spot on, and the creative guys just went with it.”
Guardian – BBH
JH: “This spot was about telling a story which immediately draws people into it. It tries not to play the role of advertising.”
Hegarty concluded with the words, “To make the industry successful, we need to make the bloody work better.”
Wieden said, “Our work needs to be more honest, we need to get to the emotional essence of the issue.”
For 45 minutes, I was completely engrossed in the seminar – I laughed out loud at their banter and repartee, experienced awe and goosebumps thanks to some of the work showcased, and I hate to admit it, but teared up on that damn P&G 'Thank you, mom' commercial by W+K.
I think that’s just what good advertising and great advertising people can do.

India spotting by Shephali Bhatt

The right word to define day six at Cannes would be: epic. I met Dan Wieden. Will leave it at that. There weren't many Indians to be seen at the palais but I did manage to spot and catch up with BBH's Russell Barrett and Law and Kenneth's Anil Nair and Sandhya Srinivasan. 

The festival comes to a close today. And it has offered loads of learn to each of us Indians who are either representing the Indian adland or writing about it. Hope we embrace those lessons before Cannes Lions 2013. Au Revoir! (till we meet again)

Campaign India