Cannes Lions 2017: the digital winners

I have a love/hate relationship with advertising festivals and I know I’m not the only one. I love them because they encourage brands and agencies to unleash creativity, and they gather and present the best of the best in advertising and current creative trends in just one place. I hate how they sometimes reward creativity for creativity’s sake, without taking into consideration the ethical implications of awarding a campaign that is not feasible, or even real.

I can understand that Publicis Groupe and WPP are re-considering their participation in Cannes in future years, but I think festivals are necessary for the industry players to meet, expose themselves and have a look at what everybody’s working on.

The Spanish winners

I said El Sol Festival usually works as a preview of Spanish and Latin American lion-winning campaigns, and this year was no different. Here are some of the digital /mobile / non-conventional campaigns awarded at El Sol Festival that got some Lions to take home from Cannes:

But let’s dip into some of my favorite digital campaigns from all over the world!

Ask for a raise

Brand: The Muse / Ladies Get Paid / / Payscale. Agency: R/GA. Award: Bronze Lion in Cyber.

The campaign was launched for Equal Pay Day 2017 and I loved it right way. It works on a good insight (good for career site The Muse), it’s a great use for a bot (good for bot-making platform, raises awareness for an important issue (good for equality fighters Ladies Get Paid and Cindy Gallop… and for the world) and it’s a great copywriting exercise (good for everybody!).

Did You Mean MailChimp?

Brand: Mailchimp. Agency: Droga5. Award: Grand Prix in Cyber and Bronze Lion in Promo & Activation.

The campaign was all over NYC when I first got here in April, and I loved it: fun, visual and with the help of Barcelona’s Brosmind on the murals.

Made in a minute

Brand: Lowe’s. Agency: BBDO New York. Award: Silver Lion in Mobile.

I learnt about this action when I was not working at Buzz anymore, but it would have been a great benchmark for one of my favorite projects there. With every brand creating DIY / recipe / life-hacks mini-clips and looking for the most innovative way to tell their story, Lowe definitely stands out with this one. Of course, you cannot shoot a whole content wave like this… but it’s a great way to create buzz about the new pieces!


Brand: Getty Images. Agency: AlmapBBDO. Award: two Silver Lion in Cyber, Silver Lion in Promo & Activation and Bronze Lion in Outdoor.

I worked at Getty Images for two years and really know and love the brand. When I heard about this campaign, two things came to my mind:

  • The insight: the industry is still not aware that Getty Images has a vast archive of great quality audio stock files.
  • The partnership: AlmapBBDO has been creating amazing campaigns for Getty Images for a few years. They are the perfect partner that really knows the brand and delivers creativity that builds on their best assets, campaign after campaign. Like with this one!

Green Light Run

Brand: Adidas Japan. Agency: TBWA\Hakuhodo. Award: Silver Lion in Creative Data and two Bronze Lions in Creative Data (Innovation Lions)Silver Lion in Direct, Bronze Lion in Outdoor and Bronze Lion in Cyber.

Not entirely digital, but just one of those ideas: simple, clever, creative, almost magical. The essence of urban running, on the beautiful Tokyo concrete landscape.

Spectacles / Snapbot

Brand: Snap. Agency: Snap. Award, for Spectacles: two Gold Lions in Product Design, one Gold Lion in Design, one Silver Lion in Mobile and one Bronze Lion in Mobile. For Snapbot: one Gold Lion in Design and one Bronze Lion in Design.

100% agreed with what the jury said: “The Spectacles demonstrate how a brand can thrive when it really incorporates design into the philosophy of its operations. ”