Best Buy's Twelpforce, out of Crispin Porter + Bogusky, earned the Titanium Grand Prix, and Nike's Livestrong campaign out of Wieden + Kennedy, Portland, took home the integrated Grand Prix.
WHAT ARE THEY? Best Buy's Twelpforce launched an army of Best Buy tech pros to address consumer problems and inquiries via Twitter (directed to @twelpforce). Nike's Livestrong campaign was an integrated effort that incorporated everything from events, outdoor, online, web films, and "Chalkbot," which took a Grand Prix in cyber earlier this week. Also part of the campaign was Lance Armstrong's public announcement that he would be competing in the 2009 Tour De France to help promote the Livestrong foundation's fight against cancer.
WHY THEY WON: Top of mind in jurors' minds about Best Buy's Twelpforce was how it changed the client's business and reimagined the customer service experience. "The phrase that came up with this piece was that it was a 'business-changing idea,'" said juror Rei Inamoto, CCO of AKQA. Not only is it game-changing, but it changes the business of the client. [Also] one of the things I think about a lot when we do our work is that it should be useful, usable and delightful. This piece hit all those points, especially the last -- it put delight back into customer service."
Added jury president Bob Greenberg: "It's a really big idea that can move the industry forward with how we tie into physical space, retail, channels, associates and service." The simplicity of the idea also contributed to its brilliance.
"It understood the basic core functionality of Twitter in a way that was really organic and authentic," said juror Susan Bonds, President/CEO of 42Entertainment.
As for Nike Livestrong, "We saw brilliant work in every aspect of the campaign -- print, broadband, an event and specifically Chalkbot, that in itself showed true innovation in numerous channels," said Greenberg. "The execution was flawless in every way shape and form and we voted unanimously." And while "Chalkbot" has been the most celebrated aspect of the campaign so far, some jurors found the campaign's most brilliant component to be its opening gambit -- Armstrong's decision to return to the Tour De France in the name of Livestrong.
"We have to look at that as part of the advertising," said juror Rob Reilly, CCO of Crispin, Porter + Bogusky. "That's where integration is going. It's not just another TV spot. His coming back was a calculated move to start this campaign. To me, that's the most important part. Chalkbot is an incredible tool, but the decision to come back in the first place, as a marketing idea, is brilliant."
THE JURY: Bob Greenberg, Chairman/CEO of R/GA served as jury president. He stepped in weeks before the festival to replace DDB Global CCO Bob Scarpelli, who was recovering from illness. The jury was predominantly made up of U.S. based jurors, five out of nine worked out of U.S.-based agencies, but they emphasized that national alliances played no part in the awarding of the Lions.
WHAT ELSE DID WELL: Ikea's Facebook Showroom, out of Forsman & Bodenfors, earned a Titanium Lion; Gold integrated Lions went to The Martin Agency, Richmond, for JFK Library's "We Choose the Moon"; AMV BBDO for the Metropolitan Police Anti-Knife Campaign; and TBWA/Chiat/Day/L.A. for Gatorade "Replay."
LIONS AWARDED: Sixteen total: 1 Titanium Grand Prix, 1 integrated Grand Prix, 1 Titanium Lion, three integrated Gold Lions, four integrated Silver, six integrated Bronze Lions
TRENDS THAT SHAPED THIS YEAR'S ENTRIES: Fighting commoditization; trend toward earned media -- "a lot of the entries showed no media dollars spent, or less than previous years," said Greenberg; and plenty of movement with new platforms like Twitter, Facebook and Foursquare.
LOOKING TO NEXT YEAR, AND BEYOND: During the press conference, Cannes International Advertising Festival Executive Chairman Terry Savage addressed a question about why Titanium/integrated wins didn't figure into the the awarding of the festival's agency of the year honor. "Historically, agency of the year has been measured along a traditional set of criteria," Savage responded. "That is a point we should address going forward." Savage also provided no definitive response when asked about how the blurring of categories -- with certain pieces of work winning in as many as six different areas -- will affect future shows. "That's a question we run into every year, and I suspect inevitably there will be some sort of collapsing. Cannes isn't the [industry] leader; we're a follower, and we have to be close to change but within the context of being a global brand. The world doesn't move at the same speeds. It's a complex set of equations, but we'll review each year accordingly."
For 2011, Savage also noted the festival is likely to introduce its first effectiveness award. Qualifying entrants must have been shortlisted or better in the previous year. "What we're trying to do is establish a direct link between creativity and effectiveness," he said. The festival is also looking to introduce the Black Lion, to honor "an individual group from the advertising industry who made a significant contribution to the industry."