5 lessons from Cannes Lions 2017

As the dust settles on the 64th Cannes Lions Festival of Creativity, it’s time to reflect on the key trends and learnings that emerged from adland’s biggest gathering.

With a jam-packed agenda featuring some of the biggest names in our industry, alongside the latest tech start-ups and digital pioneers, it was a week of inspiration and insights.

Complementing the main festival programming, MediaCom set up base in the historic Martinez Hotel, hosting a specially curated programme of intimate fireside chats and panel sessions.

These exclusive sessions added more context to the main themes heard elsewhere, and revealed intriguing new perspectives.

We can distill our learnings from the week into five key lessons for brands:

1. Balance purpose with passion
Today, more than ever, consumers want to be associated with brands that share their beliefs. This isn’t a new phenomenon but purpose was a common watchword in the Palais. However, some brands are still not sure when and where to ‘take a stand’.

2. Lean in to meet the needs of Gen Z
As Kevin Allocca, Head of Culture & Trends at YouTube, revealed: “There are three trends shaping pop culture: Niche as mainstream, interaction, and individual expression.” These are inexorably being shaped by Gen Z, who are informed and outspoken.

3. Focus on immersive experiences
As consumers demand increasingly immersive and engaging digital experiences, brands need to innovate fast or risk losing out. As Chris Duffey, Senior Strategic Development Manager at Creative Cloud Adobe, revealed, 71% of consumers would choose a brand because of good digital experience.

4. Get creative with data but stay ethical
Data is the new power tool for brands. Not only does it help us increase the effectiveness of our messages – by reaching the right audiences, in the right places, and at the right times – it provides us with the insights and tools to create inspiring creative campaigns.

5. Develop your cultural understanding
While data is crucial in helping us understand what consumers do online, culture is key to understanding how societies and consumers think and feel.

To find out more about these lessons, see the work that demonstrates their power, and uncover insights that will keep you thinking long into the future, download the full report.

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