How can a cat food brand help change the world? The Cannes Lions 2022 Industry Craft Grand Prix winner, “Hope Reef," from Mars Petcare’s Sheba is a prime example.
Cannes Lions Industry Craft Grand Prix goes to world-changing cat food campaign
What it is
In 2021, Mars Petcare cat food brand Sheba announced its backing of what it dubbed the “world’s largest coral restoration program” that set out to restore more than 185,000 square meters of coral reefs around the world by 2029. It debuted with the unveiling of the “Hope Reef,” a body of coral off the coast of Indonesia spelling out the word “Hope,” viewable all the way from space through Google Earth. The campaign was created out of AMV BBDO.
The Industry Craft category honors the artistry, talent and skill required to deliver an exceptionally executed solution to a brand’s problem. This year’s winner also solved a real-world problem, as coral reefs are crucial to sustaining food, income and protection for about 500 million people around the world. The campaign’s case study film noted that in just two years, it’s helped a dead reef in Indonesia go from “99% dead to 70% alive.”
The campaign also included a YouTube Channel where every video view generated an ad revenue donation to The Nature Conservancy to support its reef restoration programs.
Why it won
As with the Digital Craft Jury, Industry Craft Jury President Nils Leonard, co-founder of Uncommon, noted that for the Grand Prix winner, the jury looked for work that had impact in the real world. “We didn’t want craft to be maybe what it’s become, which is a kind of mustache-twiddling exercise that clients loathe and the real world forgets,” he said. “We wanted it to matter.”
The campaign also showed how something as basic and simple as type, which “can almost seem small, the most crafty and the most peripheral of categories, can also be the most powerful,” —a piece of typography “you can see from space,” Leonard said.
Controversy, or clear winner?
There was one other contender for the top prize, the Burger King Mexico “Nonartificial Whopper” campaign from We Believers that turned the streets of Mexico into a massive photography museum with large-scale black-and-white photographs of everyday folks enjoying BK food.
“It was crazy good,” Leonard said. “It was really, really artful and very raw, and we wanted to commend it very highly. Its casting will be a reference point, and the nature of that shoot will be a reference point. How it was presented was very powerful, but it didn’t have the scale that the Grand Prix had."
The winners in the category reaffirm the key role of craft in delivering a brand’s message. “We think craft is the difference between a conversation going the right way or not,” Leonard said. “It’s the difference between something mattering or not, something getting noticed or not.”