Cannes is entering the home stretch, with some attendees already checking in with airlines for their flights home. But it's still very, very busy. Today Ad Age Executive Editor Nat Ives will moderate a panel about Breaking2, Nike's attempt to break the two-hour mark in a marathon. FCB Global Chief Creative Officer Susan Credle and 72andSunny Executive Creative Director Keith Cartwright are taking questions in different sessions on the way they think and work. And, amid what feels like growing tension between creativity and data, BBDO President and CEO Andrew Robertson will provide "a whistle stop tour of the chemistry of communications, the wonderful secrets of dopamine and oxytocin, and the scientific reasons why creativity and emotional content will always be king."
An AI-fueled rendition of a never-delivered John F. Kennedy speech won the Grand Prix for Creative Data as Cannes Lions continued awarding hardware. The project, created by Irish agency Rothco for the Times of London, used artificial intelligence to stitch Kennedy's voice into the speech he had been set to deliver on the day he was killed in Dallas. Other Lions handed out on Thursday included the Innovation Grand Prix, which went to MyLine, a project by MullenLowe SSP3 in Bogota that gave people in remote areas access to online services using a landline; the Grand Prix for PR to The Trash Isles, which encouraged young people to lobby the United Nations to recognize ocean plastic as its own country; and the first Social & Influencer Grand Prix, to Nike, for its "Nothing Beats a Londoner" short. Check out all the Grand Prix winners here.
R/GA's Dave Edwards catches up with Clara de Soto, co-founder of Reply.ai — a bot-building tool — to bring us the latest in analog Chicago weather.
-- Brian Braiker
People just got used to calling marketing directors "brand directors." Now Procter & Gamble Co. has tossed new titles into the mix.
"We're now starting to organize more as a startup, so really starting to break down the names of what we call people," said P&G Chief Brand Officer Marc Pritchard at a Thursday panel with members of the first Cannes CMO Growth Council. "SK-II, one of our fastest-growing brands by the way, has a brand manager at the center. Then there's a hipster, a hustler and a huckster. And there's a hacker, too." Unfortunately, he didn't get into job descriptions.
Pritchard did focus on getting bigger and better. When Association of National Advertisers CEO Bob Liodice asked panelists what they'd like to see next year when the council reconvenes, Pritchard drew laughs by saying: "Well, I'd like to see growth."
HP Chief Marketing and Communications Officer Antonio Lucio as well as Pritchard felt that marketers have gotten "blindsided by technology and shiny objects." Lucio would like "for the swagger to come back to the marketing function," and to see Cannes Lions awards tied more closely to, well, growth.
CMOs should be "recognized more as business leaders, recognizing the strategic role of marketing," said Deloitte Digital CMO Alicia Hatch.
Mathilde Delhoume, global brand officer of LVMH, cited research that "80 percent of the world population would not care if brands disappeared." She suggested marketers go back and think about "one thing you can do for one of the human beings to want this brand to still be around not just in 10 years but 20 or 30."
After assembling 25 global CMOs this year, Liodice said they'll be reaching out "just about every company that's out there" to come next year.
Add in tracks for hipsters, hustlers, hucksters and hackers, and the prospects may be unlimited.
-- Jack Neff
"How creativity can save our oceans" was the name of the Cannes panel. We still don't know the full answer, though it may include a startup backed by Evian that aims to make recycled plastic usable for water bottles. We do know what Unilever Chief Marketing and Communications Officer Keith Weed really wanted to be when he grew up.
When co-panelist Simon Le Bon of Duran Duran said that his five-year-old self wanted to be an ocean diver like Jacques Cousteau, Weed piped in: "I wanted to be a pop star." Le Bon replied: "Good luck with that."
Weed is, of course, a rock-star CMO, which is the next best thing, right? And everyone is hungry like a wolf for less plastic and more fish in the sea. To that end, the panel also spawned the next item on the Cannes reform agenda for next year. Moderator Gail Gallie, co-founder of Project Everywhere, noted the lack of recycling receptacles in Cannes, and urged attendees to not buy passes next year until the oversight is addressed.
Cannes already has created a pricing model to reflect the growing world shortage of water, which costs 9 euros a bottle at the Carlton lobby bar.
-- Jack Neff
This mesmerizing dessert was the final course Wednesday night at the Cannes Castle and Musée de la Castre -- the familiar high point of the old town visible from all around. The castle is not a restaurant, but in standard Cannes Lions fashion it was secured by Spredfast, a purveyor of social-media marketing and management software, for a dinner attended by some big-name marketers and agency folks. Twitter used the location during a previous Cannes Lions, projecting its trademarked bird on the castle tower like a bat signal above the town.
As for the Spredfast dessert, many guests couldn't resist taking video of the minute-long process by which hot chocolate melted the chocolate shell to reveal the delicious stuff beneath. Not a bad idea to have dessert optimized for social media.
-- Jack Neff
We're on day four, and exhausted doesn't even begin to explain how we're feeling. Last night at our party, Ad Age media reporter Jeanine Poggi did what we all wanted to do. Only problem with taking a second to relax at Cannes? Once you stop it's hard not to nap.
-- Megan Graham
The audience gasped when it watched a cut-down of one of the short films that David Schwimmer recently helped make to illustrate what sexual harassment looks like.
"What's interesting is that one of the actors in a short said he's realizing that when he's on set and goes to hugs an assistant or a wardrobe person, they don't have a choice," Schwimmer said during the Thursday event, a Girls' Lounge panel with Advertising Council CEO Lisa Sherman and Shelley Zalis, CEO at The Female Quotient. "When you're an assistant and here comes the star of the show for a hug, the power dynamic doesn't allow the assistant to do anything else. And so that actor said he was going to modify that behavior. It just isn't fair."
-- Erik Basil Spooner
A big crowd turned out Wednesday afternoon for Ad Age's annual Cannes lawn party, where we honored our cover contest winner, Dany Alberto Sosa Gálvez. Guests were ready to start teasing out the through lines of this year's ad festival, like the apparent commitment to do more to promote inclusiveness in the industry. Attendees also agree that it's a more relaxed Cannes than the last few years, with smaller crowds on the Croisette.
-- Nat Ives