Campaign India Team
Jun 18, 2015

What makes Cannes, Cannes? (3)

The third of our three part series of what brings Indian adlanders to the South of France every year

What makes Cannes, Cannes? (3)
What brings Indian adlanders to the South of France every year? The not-so-scorching sun and sand are just part of the package. Here’s a snapshot of a Campaign India survey, and a scorecard on how India views the festival’s conference content, where the Lion stands amidst a deluge of advertising awards, and work that our countrymen and women want to see win. Read on...
 
‘A place to stretch the boundaries and paradigms’
 
Anil Nair
CEO (Digital) and 
managing partner
L&K Saatchi and Saatchi
Knows the bartender at the Gutter Bar by name; not going this year
 
Why attend? 
I think Cannes is a fireplace for global communication creativity and a place to stretch the boundaries and paradigms.
 
Cannes and the young... 
I personally think that agencies should send larger continents of younger folks. South America takes the lead in that department. Huge contigents. 
 
My scores  
Conference content: 8
Networking opportunities: 8
Cannes Lions (awards): 8
Creative stimulus and inspiration: 9
 
Work that could work...
Hyundai Message to Space, Like a Girl and Hong Kong Cleanup the Face of Litter are amongst my personal favourites to win.
 
 
‘The energy percolates upwards a lot more than downwards’
 
Swati Bhattacharya
Principal partner – 
Mama Lab Creative
Dentsu India
2002, 2013; not going this year
 
Cannes is Cannes! 
It is just the kind of environment in which you see the work and meet people. You can indeed see the same work on a computer. But when you see it along with people while feeling a sense of community, it gives you a different kind of energy making you want to do better, think better... that is really good. 
 
Why attend?
I feel it’s still better for younger people to go. When they come back they can give that energy to the whole office. The energy percolates upwards a lot more than downwards. So if you’re very motivated, a very gung-ho young team, then it propels the leaders in a particular way.  
 
Cannes and the young... 
Agencies think all the young people should go to Goa and only the bosses should go to Cannes. But if from every office one team goes to Cannes, it’s almost like a perk for the team.
 
My scores  
Conference content: 7
Networking opportunities: 8 
Cannes Lions (awards): 8 to 9
Creative stimulus and inspiration: 9
 
 
 
‘The sharing of ideas and creativity is unparalleled’
 
Ameya Mohane
Brand partner
Orchard Advertising
Cannes virgin
 
Cannes is Cannes! 
This is probably the only global festival which has probably 80 or 90 countries participating. So it is actually the place where you have the best of the creative minds all over. The whole sharing of ideas and creativity is unparalleled.  
 
Why haven’t you been there yet?
I’m in the account management function and in any agency, the creative function would obviously be given the priority. But since the last two years, with Saurabh (Verma) coming in, he has opened it as an opportunity for everyone to go and experience the festival. Which is how I got the opportunity and I’m very happy about it. 
 
Cannes and the young... 
Agencies are not sending many youngsters to Cannes but they should be. If you see the way the media landscape is changing with digital becoming more and more important, it is the young guys who will be driving the integration forward. Also, a young team finds it easiest to look at the digital side of things. The festival has given them the opportunity to be exposed to the kind of work that is happening across the world.    
 
 
‘Only Cannes can create a museum’
 
Titus Upputuru
National creative director
Dentsu
First trip seven or eight years ago; not going this year
 
Cannes is Cannes! 
Cannes is Cannes because it is an annual festival not just an award show. It is also iconic. Recently Cannes celebrated 60 years and it was great to see work from all of those years over one evening, like a flash. They made a museum near the Grand Palais. And if you think about it, only Cannes can create a museum. When you entered the museum, you really got a sense that the best of our work is indeed art.
 
The ‘X’ factor…
Only Cannes celebrates films like it does. That’s a huge draw. One Show is big on Print and Design, so is D&AD but Cannes is big on video. Every year, they also have the young director’s showcase which is a much-awaited reel. So I guess it is the importance that Cannes gives to film. Perhaps this comes as second nature to them since the destination celebrates the best of cinema every year. Also the fact that it gives a Lion as a trophy. That’s special. Besides, of course the media attention it draws. The ocean. The Grand Palais. The live local music playing in the village. And the distinct nip and smell in the air in the evenings.
 
Cannes and the young…
It is an expensive proposition so we need to be conscious of that. But yes, if agencies can afford, they should send more people.
 
My scores
Conference content: 6
Networking opportunities: 0
Cannes Lions (awards): 10
Creative stimulus and inspiration: 7
 
Work that could work…
India should win. But I am not sure if we have as many great entries from our country this year.
 
 
‘To be inspired, humbled, blown away...’
 
Nima Namchu
Chief creative officer
Havas WW
Thrice since 2005
 
Why attend?
To be inspired and humbled by the winning entries (and sometimes, even those which don’t win are Lion-worthy). To be blown away by the execution quality. To be enlightened at the seminars. To network. All the while praying like mad that our work makes the cut as well.
 
Cannes and the young…
Of course, more young people should be attending the festival – but there are budgetary constraints, especially for agencies which are located far away from Cannes or in countries which are ‘exchange-rate challenged’. Perhaps the organising committee should create a special delegation package for youngsters.
 
My scores  
Conference content: 9
Networking opportunities: 7
Cannes Lions (awards): 10
Creative stimulus and inspiration: 10
 
Work that could work... 
I think Cheil Seoul’s ‘Look At Me’ app, the Honda ‘Type R’ film and the VW work from DDB Mudra are strong contenders. And the iCONGO TV might just win, depending on the jury’s sense of humour.  
 
 
‘The ‘x’ factor comes from the badge value back home’
 
Sandeep Goyal
Owner-promoter
Mogae Group
Every year from 1994 to 2001; not going this year
 
What makes Cannes, Cannes?
Clearly, the atmosphere.
It is this feeling of ‘belonging’ ... this feeling of ‘being there’. Yes, ‘there’.
Great meeting place. Great mingling place.
Some learning. Lots of exposure. That too exposure to ‘best-of-class’.
Somehow also, Cannes cuts across agency lines. In Cannes you are first from India, and only later from JWT or McCann. So a different kind of bonding and bonhomie.
I think the ‘x’ factor comes from the badge value back home, “Oh, I was at Cannes last week …”
 
Why attend?
The carnival atmosphere. Meeting friends, colleagues and clients in a very different setting. The content is important... exposure to some great work... but the context is even more important... the world’s most celebrated stage for excellence.
 
Cannes and the young…
Maybe more should go. But going to Cannes should be ‘earned’...  It should be an incentive to strive for excellence and global exposure.
 
My scores
Conference content: 6
Networking opportunities: 9
Cannes Lions (awards): 9
Creative stimulus and inspiration: 8
Official break: 10
 
 
‘A great place to get perspectives...’
 
Rohit Ohri
CEO
Dentsu Asia Pacific
2014, 2015
 
Cannes is Cannes! 
When I went to Cannes last year I was skeptical about what value-add will the festival have. But honestly, I was absolutely thrilled by the quality of the sessions, some of them were just brilliant and eye-opening. There’s an enormous amount of value in looking at what’s happening globally in the world of advertising and marketing with lots to learn. Great experience!
 
The ‘x’ factor…
Cannes, when I look at it from a global perspective, is well represented by the best in the world. Regional festivals don’t have that kind of representation. Also, the way the festival is organised is completely professional and very smooth. 
 
Why attend?
The opportunity to meet with many advertising and marketing people, the colleagues of your network, global clients and colleagues, partners, partnership leaders (such as from Google, Amazon), it is a great place to get perspectives from all of them. 
 
Cannes and the young…
That’s the conundrum and something we’re looking at as a network. We’ve been trying to set a quality benchmark of work, creative talent, of a particular standard which the creative council then nominates and sends those people to Cannes. There’s also the fact that Cannes is an expensive proposition. Usually the senior leadership of the agency goes to Cannes but I think as we go along, the big opportunity is to find the talent we really want to develop into senior leadership and look at this as part of their development process.
 
My scores
Conference content: 8
Networking opportunities: 9
Cannes Lions (awards): 8
Creative stimulus and inspiration: 9
 
Work that could work…
I’m hoping that Taproot Dentsu wins for Mumbai Mirror. It has done very well across the region. Dentsu Webchutney had a campaign called ‘Happy Hour rewind’ which won at Adfest, Kyoorius, Goafest so we’re keeping our fingers crossed on that one. 
 
 
‘The entire city of Cannes itself...’
 
Raj Nair
Chief creative officer
Madison BMB
More than 10 times since 2000; not going this year
 
Cannes is Cannes! 
I think the single largest thing that makes the Cannes advertising festival special is the location itself. What a venue!!!! By that, I don’t just mean the Palais Du Festivals, but the entire city of Cannes itself, the beaches, the winding lanes dotted with restaurants and cafes, the amazing food on offer and the weather. Then the intense seminars and workshops that form an integral part of the show of which at least 60 per cent are truly high quality. Add to that the all the various parties, including all roads that lead to the Gutter Bar.
 
My first time at Cannes…
First time was back in 2000 when the Budweiser ‘Wassup’ campaign won Grand Prix and the Croisette was ringing out with exhortations of ‘Wassup’ directed even at the amused ice cream vendors. I have gone more than 10 times and in 2011 as Juror on the Direct Lions Jury.
 
Why attend?
As always, to enjoy and be inspired by the work that is showcased and then the opportunity to attend great seminars and even to meet some great minds. Having said that, the last couple of years, it has been near impossible to get into venues if you are not there early to stand in queue. So planning for the same is a must.
 
Cannes and the young…
Agencies have always been sending deserving youngsters and they will continue to.
 
My scores
Conference content: 7.5
Networking opportunities: 7
Cannes Lions (awards): 7
Creative stimulus and inspiration: 9
 
Work that could work…
From India, the VW Posters/Print.
From USA, the Pop-up Gun Store in New York (that took some chutzpah to pull off.)
 
 
‘Cannes is just that – Cannes’
 
Jyoti Bansal,
Managing director
PHD India
First time in 2014; not going this year
 
Cannes is Cannes!
Cannes is just that – Cannes.
It is the oldest and arguably the oldest, most prestigious and most well-attended advertising festival. The sheer spirit is amazing and I think it stands out for the sheer amount of work that it attracts.
 
The first time…
The first time was 2014, and was the only time… and of course it was super special, as we won GOLD for Kan Khajura Teshan. To be on that stage is something else, and no other win can match that emotion.
 
My scores  
Conference content: 8
Networking opportunities: 10
Cannes Lions (awards): 10
Creative stimulus and inspiration: 10
 
Work that could work…
PHD has entered some really differentiated work this year into the festival. Consumer 360, which is probably the largest consumer profiling initiative in India, successfully profiling 5 per cent of India’s population via the mobile, is a path-breaking piece of work that we have done for Hindustan Unilever. It is making a real difference to their business, and officially, at the risk of being called partial, I would say it should definitely win. 
 
 
‘The Cannes Lions festival has never stopped innovating’
 
Sonal Dabral
Chairman and 
chief creative officer
DDB Mudra Group
20th straight year in 2015
 
Cannes is Cannes!
Cannes (the city itself), the cutting edge work and the great seminars are some of the things that make Cannes Lions special. Added to it is the fact that the Cannes Lions festival has never stopped innovating.
The 20th year…
My first time at Cannes Lions was in 1995, so this will be my 20th year at Cannes. In this little city, over the last two decades I’ve had the privilege to witness both the Cannes Lions festival and advertising as an industry grow in leaps and bounds.
(Maybe they will give me a long service award there. Maybe a watch for 20 years of meritorious service!)
 
Why attend?
After 20 years of going to the same place at exactly the same time of the year one would think that the charm of the place must wear out and familiarity must definitely pave way for some degree of contempt… but not so with Cannes. 
I don’t know what it is. Whether it’s the strolling down Croisette, taking in the sun or meeting friends from all over the world during Gutter Bar nights, whether it’s the week-long immersion in great work and the inspiring seminars or the oysters at the restaurant opposite the Palais or the feeling of pride that I get every time I watch the best of my chosen profession shape world thinking. Whatever it is, every visit to Cannes and Cannes Lions feels fresh, feels inspiring, it feels wonderful.
 
Work that could work…
I have a few favourites that I’m sure will win. There is this ‘Like A Girl’ social experiment from Leo Burnett  Toronto for Always that’s bound to win a lot of Golds. Maybe a Grand Prix too. In Cyber I really like ‘The Other Side for Honda Type R’ and of course Adam and EveDDB London’s ‘Monty the Penguin’ is most certainly a FIlm Gold. 
There’s a film from DDB Argentina that I think should do really well too. It’s called ‘The Man and the dog’ made for Fundacion Argentina De Transplante Hepatico. Everyone should take a look at the film. It’s amazing. I’m also very fond of KFC Posters from BBDO Malaysia titled ‘So Good’. I judged them at Malaysia’s local Kancil Awards last year and I hope they do well at Cannes. They are superb. 
I’m also hopeful that two pieces of our own work from DDB Mudra namely ‘Health Cha ShreeGanesh’ and VW ‘Identity’ (Print and Posters) also come back with a couple of Lions. I am biased but I love them both.
 
Cannes and the young…
The first year I went to Cannes, there were not more than 15 people representing India at the Lions. So compared to that, the number has swelled over all these years and now there is a healthy number that comes from agencies in India. We should not forget that sending delegates to Cannes Lions is an expensive proposition and therefore it should be seen as an incentive that needs to be earned. Work hard, win a few Lions, win business for your agencies and then earn your claim to be at Cannes Lions. Most of us who get here have done that. The first time I came here was also the first time ever my agency and I (at that time, Ogilvy) had a Cannes finalist. It was a print ad for Perk Chocolate. Thankfully that was just the beginning.
 
My scores
Conference content: 8
Networking opportunities: 10
Cannes Lions (awards): 8
Creative stimulus and inspiration: 10
 
 
‘You get to see which way the world is heading’
 
Ashish Bhasin
Chairman and CEO 
South Asia
Dentsu Aegis Network
Second trip in 2015
 
Cannes is Cannes!
Extensive learning from across different fields of world standards; that to me is the biggest thing about Cannes. Along with that there are great networking opportunities. 
 
The ‘X’ factor…
The sheer quality and quantity of activities are much more than what you can see anywhere else. That, as well as the opportunity to see path breaking work. What happens is we think we’re doing great work in our market but all of a sudden your eyes open to see thousands of entries of excellent quality. You get to see which way the world is heading, the global benchmarks and standards being set. Seeing that work is an eye-opener and very exciting.   
 
Cannes and the young…
It is never enough in that sense. 
We should send as many as we can. 
 
My scores  
Conference content: 8
Networking opportunities: 8
Cannes Lions (awards): 6
Creative stimulus and inspiration: 7
 
Work that could work…
To me Mumbai Mirror is probably the most outstanding campaign. That’s the one I’ll definitely be rooting for.  
 
‘What makes Cannes more special is the quality of surround activities’
 
Sagar Kapoor
Executive creative director
Lowe Lintas
Was there in 2013
 
Cannes is Cannes!
Cannes has for a long time now been seen as the award capital for advertising. What makes it ‘Cannes’ is a lot of factors. Right from the jury to the workshops and talks it holds every year... I guess it is the combined experience of the entire festival that makes it a celebration coupled with insightful talks on the present and future of advertising.
I have been exposed to the New York Festivals and Cannes. What makes Cannes more special is the quality of surround activities around the award ceremony itself. Not that New York Festivals is any less fun.
Although, Cannes did make me feel one thing for sure - That the creative fraternity is a huge one. Often one feels it is limited to the people we either know or have seen in books.
 
Why did you attend? 
I had attended Cannes as Lowe and Partners had entered the global campaign for LifeBuoy - Help a Child Reach 5 (#HARC5) which was created by the Lowe Lintas + Partners, India team. Also to engage in the showcasing and discussions on creative work from all around the world.
 
Cannes and the young…
There can never be enough people to be sent. But yes, even under trying circumstances, I believe agencies are sending good and deserving candidates.
 
My scores 
Conference content: 8
Networking opportunities: 5 (Maybe, because I did not network there)
Cannes Lions (awards): 9 
Creative stimulus and inspiration: 8
 
For more news updates from Cannes follow Campaign@Cannes
 
(This first appeared in the 12 June 2015 issue of Campaign India)
 
Source:
Campaign India

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