This year’s in-person Cannes Lions was canceled due to the pandemic, but the show will go on. The creative marketing community has convened for Lions Live, the virtual version of the international festival. Each day members can tune in for a live broadcast of sessions, which are also available on demand. The winner of each awards category is being announced during “Daily Awards Show,” which comprises five 90-minute virtual shows covering 28 award categories and hosted by Juan Señor in Cannes. Ahead, a roundup of the Cannes Lions Grand Prix winners so far, including H&M, Burger King, Reddit and more. See the complete list of winning brands here.
H&M “Looop” by AKQA Stockholm
Giving new life to old clothes, the world’s first in-store garment-to-garment recycling system was featured in this spot AKQA Stockholm created for H&M. The brand installed the waterless and dye-less system on the second floor of their store in the heart of Stockholm, Sweden.
First launched in Hong Kong in 2018, the 40-foot-container-sized system was tested in a warehouse in Stockholm before it was purchased by H&M. Surrounded by sound-proof glass and stationed atop an anti-vibration floor, the system operates with zero impact on neighboring businesses or shoppers.
Shoppers can head upstairs to witness the eight-step recycling process, including ozone sanitation, shredding, cleaning, fiber web, slivers, high speed rotor, ply yarn and knitting.
Heineken “Shutter Ads” by Publicis Italy Milan
Ensuring the survival of bars destined to shut down permanently after the pandemic, Heineken redirected its outdoor media investment from out-of-home (OOH) advertising dollars from billboards and bus stops to closed bars’ shutters.
Over 5,000 bars across the globe participated in the sustainable media buying venture, themselves earning a combined €7.5 billion, and earning Heineken 40 percent more media value than the traditional OOH. The venture was so popular, other beer companies followed suit.
Creative Data Lions
Warner Music “Saylists” Rothco, Part of Accenture Interactive Dublin
Warner Music decided to help children with speech impediments by developing an algorithm that analyzes over 70 million songs and categorizes those with particularly helpful repetition patterns and sounds to make typically boring speech therapy fun.
Burger King “Stevenage Challenge” by David Madrid
Burger King sponsored the lowest-ranking football club in England’s lowest-ranking division – Stevanage F.C., placing their logo in FIFA ‘20.
BK then launched the Stevenage Challenge, calling on players to sign the league’s best onto the Stevenage team and post their goals on Twitter in return for free grub. The campaign produced over 25,000 shared goals, made Stevenage the most-used team in career mode and caused shirts to sell out for the first time ever.
Social & Influencer Lions
Reddit “Superb Owl” by R/GA San Francisco
Reddit crashed Super Bowl LV with a five-second spot. It spent its entire marketing budget on that slot, which is why it excluded celebrities, actors and even a script.
The ad aired after the world learned about the David versus Goliath story that was Gamestop – a battle that rages on even to this day. The message highlighted how powerful it is to rally around an idea, and how Reddit is the place to do just that.
Over 300 news outlets covered the spot, which earned over 6.5 billion impressions and caused the actual site to crash after a 25 percent increase in traffic. Plus, it was the most-searched ad of Super Bowl Sunday.
City of Chicago “Boards of Change” by FCB Chicago
To encourage more black voters to vote in the 2020 presidential election, Chicago launched a campaign called Boards of Change, constructing voting booths out of strand boards that were once used to prevent Black Lives Matter rioters from damaging buildings. The result: a record number of voters.
Creative Strategy Lions
Cheetos “Can’t Touch This” by Goodby Silverstein & Partners San Francisco
Everyone knows you can’t touch anything after you’ve eaten a bag of Cheetos. The company has embraced this truth and the messy residue it leaves on fingers in a campaign with an average Joe discovering all of the obligations he’s freed of due to cheesy fingers. MC Hammer, and his iconic phrase “Can’t touch this” helped officially launch the brand’s Cheetos Popcorn.
Asics “Eternal Run” by Edelman London
Asics invented a race without a finish line in its new campaign that takes place in Utah’s Bonneville Salt Flats. The idea was to determine if, with the technology in the shoes, 23 runners would run farther than they predicted for themselves. The spot amassed 1.7 billion impressions plus 71 percent ran farther and 71 percent of consumers who saw the campaign said they’d choose Asics.
Entertainment Lions for Music
Mercado Livre “Feed Parade” by Gut Sao Paulo
Brazil, home of the world’s largest Pride parade, was forced to cancel 2020’s festivities. Mercado Livre, who normally sponsors the event, decided to sponsor a virtual version of the parade by inviting influencers to tag themselves on an Instagram feed of Brazil’s most iconic avenue. Next, one of Brazil’s most famous LGBT artists released a music video featuring the Instagram handles of the 60,000 people who participated. As a result, engagement was up 1,200 percent above average, 63 million people were impacted and the spot earned 500 million impressions.
Sinyi Realty “In Love We Trust” by Dentsu McGarrybowen Taipei City
In Taiwan, ‘marriage’ also means ‘build a home.’ But having the highest divorce rates in Asia and the second highest in the world means home building is steadily decreasing.
Sinyi Realty addressed the phenomenon with a campaign in which they created a new term, “The Age of Doubting Marriage.” The campaign’s film aimed to encourage young people to not be afraid of marriage. Key opinion leaders kept sharing, thus sparking celebrity commentary. The result: 14 million views and 2020’s most popular ad in Taiwan.
Industry Craft Lions
Dove “Courage is Beautiful” by Ogilvy London
Dove paid its respects to front-line healthcare workers battling the pandemic and saving lives with a campaign that featured workers’ faces immediately after removing their protective gear. The brand also displayed the names of the doctors and nurses featured in the film. The message was simple: courage is beautiful.
Digital Craft Lions
Epic Games “Astronomical” by Epic Games, Inc. Cary, North Carolina
Fortnight and Travis Scott partnered up for a one-of-a-kind in-game concert. The event features a 30-foot tall Travis performing a brand new track, one that reached the top spot on the charts post-concert. The virtual concert was a boon to the game: 12.3 million Fortnight players watched live and 27.7 million unique players in-game participated 45.8 million times across five events.
Film Craft Lions
Libresse “#wombstories” by Chelsea Pictures Los Angeles
In confronting the narrative young women are taught about their period, wanting and having children, and other issues surrounding periods and reproduction, Libresse’s 2020 campaign gives a voice to the unknown or unspoken truths about women’s periods, vulvas and wombs.
An all-female team of animators and illustrators anthropomorphised the womb and creatively depicted what happens inside a woman’s body when she’s on her period, having intercourse, experiencing period cramps or giving birth, to name a few.
Woojer “Sick Beats” by Area 23, an FCB Health Network Company New York
Children with cystic fibrosis are forced to wear airway clearance vests that allow them to cough up mucus in their lungs, a routine they describe as “the worst part of the day.” Woojer discovered that 40 hz is actually as effective at loosening mucus as traditional CFS therapy. In response, they made a vest that syncs to a child’s phone, pulls those frequencies from music on Spotify then delivers them to the child’s chest. They scanned Spotify’s 30 million songs and pulled those containing the 40 hz tone.
The campaign featured clips of children wearing the traditional vests before unboxing and wearing Sick Beats vests. The difference in their behavior is awe-inspiring.
Health & Wellness Lions
Essity “#wombpainstories” by AMV BBDO London
Essity chose to address the fact that 62 percent of women do not feel they can talk openly about their experiences by asking them how they felt. They animated and illustrated their stories by anthropomorphising the womb, embracing all of the love and all of the hate for the womb. Women became braver and began sharing their experiences. These experiences were then recycled and compiled to create the world’s first pain dictionary and digital pain museum.
The result: over 100 million views, increased market share (8.1 percent UK, 14.1 percent RU, 9.9 percent DK), 200 percent increase in followers, and best of all – no more shame.
COPI (Central Office of Public Interest) “AddressPollution.org” by AMV BBDO London
COPI’s campaign attempted to address the reality that roughly 8 million (25 percent) addresses in the UK have air pollution levels above World Health Organization limits by launching addresspollution.org and promoting it on building projections and billboards and via direct mail. The website includes access to free reports of the air quality at every address in London. The reports include a simple rating system along with specific health and financial costs. The initiative also pushes for legal action to mandate disclosure of air pollution ratings within the property industry by connecting citizens with their elected officials.
The campaign was so effective, COPI changed the law, obligating estate agents to disclose information that COPI’s website gives them. Property portals now include addresspollution.org’s rating on every listing, and air pollution has become impossible to ignore.