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The ICCO Global Award Entries: The Quest To Demonstrate True Effectiveness

Article by Renee Wilson, president, PR Council; co-chair of ICCO Global Awards jury

Another awards program? Oh my…….but wait! – here is a chance to get some deserved recognition for your team’s stellar work, while helping educate the global marketing communications community on the power of public relations.

Our industry is going through somewhat of an identity crisis redefining who we are, and what we do, at an incredible pace.  There are many types of different discipline agencies that claim to know how to ‘earn influence’ or ‘earn media’ in a way that public relations can, with credibility and relevance.  However, our discipline is truly an art and a science, and operates in some similar ways but in a lot of unique ways too.

The ICCO Global Awards is a great opportunity for our industry to showcase the way in which public relations campaigns achieve real results, through powerful outcomes.  It is the measurement of changes in attitudes, opinions, and behavior (eg,votes, shares, sales etc.) that truly helps underscore the effectiveness of our campaigns, and what the ICCO Global Awards are all about.

The Cannes Lions Festival and Awards is very much rooted in creativity, and we love it for that, while the ICCO Global Awards punctuates the campaign “effectiveness.” That’s not to say that you don’t need a creative entry to win the ICCO Global Awards too, but proving how you help achieve your clients’ objectives with something measureable and tangible, not just opinion, is where your focus should be when entering for an ICCO Global Award.

Additionally, could this be the year we come up with the best collection of global campaign entries that demonstrate the powerful effectiveness that public relations offers?  I think it could.  Let’s challenge ourselves and our industry to do it!  Then, let’s use these ICCO Global Award winning campaign entries as calling cards to clients all over the world to better demonstrate what our discipline is capable of when it comes to effectiveness.

In my role as president of the PR Council, I talk to many leaders from CMOs and marketing clients, to communication directors, about the power of PR.  In order for them to continue to prioritize PR within their organizations with supporting resource, and in some cases, start to prioritize, we need to do a better job of explaining our effectiveness.  It’s that simple.  And, it’s that complex.

If you listen to the trade media that cover our industry and the industry pundits, some feel that we are moving too slowly in doing this.  The observation – (whether you agree or not) – is perhaps we are not retooling as quickly as other disciplines in terms of our talent, infrastructure and campaign thinking.  Let’s prove them wrong!  Let’s show the remarkable work our teams produce.  Let’s enter the ICCO Global Awards and use these entries as our industry calling cards.

For more information on the ICCO Global Awards visit: awards.iccopr.com

Crystal Balling the Cannes Festival of Creativity by Karen Strauss

Article by Karen Strauss, Partner, Chief Creative & Strategy Officer at Ketchum. 

 

When the wise people at the Cannes Lions International Festival of Creativity put together 8 days of inspiring content for the international creative elite, they are curating workshops and sessions to hit the big issues keeping creative leaders up at night.

This year’s line-up looks provocative, marked by a whiff of alarm around how truly difficult it’s become to cut through all the content pollution.  After poring over hundreds and hundreds of seminar titles and descriptions, here’s what I expect will be the buzz on the Riviera.

STANDING OUT HAS NEVER BEEN HARDER – The boldface speakers in Cannes will be cajoling marketing communicators to invent new ways of telling stories.  Innovator Anna Wintour will urge the industry to steal a page from “Hamilton,” which literally invented a new genre of musical theatre storytelling; Academy Award-winning director Alejandro Inarritu will advocate the kind of mould-breaking that produced “The Revenant” and “Birdman,” and Barton F. Graf founder Gerry Graf will rail against groupthink and insist that finding one original-thinking creative partner is the only path to elusive breakthroughs.

A great rallying cry for novelty.

IS VIRTUAL REALITY AND 360 VIDEO THE ANSWER? – Nobody will leave Cannes without Virtual Reality and 360 experiences, yet given the ubiquity of these technologies, one has to wonder if they’ll be stand-out strategies or instantly too commonplace.  Google is promising immersive experiences that enhance storytelling; Samsung’s VR and 360 showcase will demonstrate how to “engage culture and experience compassion”; and MOFILM will share “View From Above,” (http://viewfromabove.emirates.com/3d), its incredible aerial film project that used drones to film 18 destinations where Emirates flies, allowing travellers to experience each city with remarkable perspective.

Trailblazing immersive experiences.

IS SEX THE ANSWER? – Better connections with consumers may be as primal as plumbing their sexual desires, and this year in Cannes, sex is on stage.  My friends at Flamingo believe a generation’s sexuality is a key indicator of its drivers and values and that each generation’s approach to sex is different.  They’ll argue that recognizing sexual attitudes are a path to connecting with broader hopes and dreams.  Another panel with sex therapist Esther Perel will draw connections between online dating and brand promiscuity today, providing tips for cultivating desire in all kinds of relationships.

Sex plays to our primitive instincts.

IS HUMOUR THE ANSWER? – In winning over audiences, comedy has long been king – and thankfully in Cannes, “queen.” The female SNL trio of Cecily Strong, Aidy Bryant and Vanessa Bayer will make the case for women’s humour; Rashida Jones, a comedy writer and star of “Parks & Recreation” will reveal how humour can shine a light on important issues; and Mike McAvoy, the CEO of The Onion, will caution that “if you’re not having any fun with your brand, you’re doing it wrong.”

Laughter IS the shortest distance between two people.

DURATION & EPHEMERA MATTER – Beyond the topics, tone and technology, the length of content – and whether it’s ephemeral or not – takes on added importance in Cannes.  The Ephemeral Web is how people consume content every day, so how can brands create lasting messages when they self-destruct?  Embracing ephemerality to ignite creativity will be a hot topic.  In one session, we’ll consider whether long-form branded video content is the answer to shorter attention spans, based on new research around social media viewing habits.

Size matters, just what size is the question.

HAS CONTENT KILLED ADVERTISING? – And the mother lode – can advertising be saved?  One CCO wishes it weren’t such a dirty word, and urges her industry to not let words like content and storytelling replace “traditional” advertising in constructing brand purpose.  Conversely, a pair of advertising strategy officers will start a movement to stop advertising to save the industry. At the heart of the debate is ad blocking, and whether creativity and technology can come together to deliver digital experiences that consumers love rather than block.   Seems advertising is fighting for its life in Cannes.

Will it survive the week?

Karen is leading a panel this year titled “Content for the Ages, All of Them” that will examine age-agnostic marketing.  It is scheduled for Wednesday, June 22 at 14:30 in The Forum.

For full schedule see ICCO Guide to Cannes Lions: http://www.iccopr.com/icco-guide-to-cannes-lions/

 

Raise Your Hand! PR at the Cannes Lions Festival of Creativity

Written by Renee Wilson, President, PR Council

 

The marketplace is quickly transforming. That is evident. The older, more traditional forms of communications are no longer moving the needle as they once did. However, one thing is clear:  the methods, strategies and activity that have PR-thinking at the core are where the action is. It is my prediction that this year at the Cannes Lions Festival of Creativity, we will see the majority of winners from a host of categories have PR-thinking at the core of the idea. And when attendees ask why the program was so successful, raise your hand and proudly say it was “PR-thinking that powered the strategy and the creative idea.”

This will be my sixth year going to the Festival, and I’m just as excited as ever. Nowhere else in the world can you have a professional experience that is so awe-inspiring, educational and enjoyable all in one place. I’ve had the good fortune of serving on two PR juries, once as the PR jury chair, and this year, along with two of my PR Council Members, I’ll be serving as a PR Mentor in the Cannes Young Lions Marketers Academy, along with A.G. Bevilaqua of M Booth and Ron D’Innocenzo of Golin. It’s a great opportunity to help teach and inspire about the power of PR-thinking as it’s important to help marketers of all ages understand more about the types of work we do. It’s not PR versus advertising. It’s PR and advertising, and media, and in-store, online etc.

What do I mean when I say PR-thinking? It’s strategies and ideas that involve working with influencers, third parties, experiential, content and stakeholder relationships for starters. You will find it in the winning Cannes entries.

However, if you are still on the fence as to whether or not to attend the Festival, or more importantly to care, here are three reasons:

1. Cannes Festival showcases creativity at its best. There is no other festival that brings together the greatest creative minds in the global marketing communications industry and gives you access to the best and brightest in integrated communications. Think of it like the Olympics of Marketing. We can all learn from the powerful work.

2. Young Lions Competition. For only the third time, PR is included as a category in this competition. We are proudly sending Team USA and I’m sure other regions are putting forth their bright young talent too. These future leaders definitely have a thing or two to teach us about the industry.

3. ICCO House of PR. For the second year in a row, ICCO will be hosting the House of PR. This is a great meeting place for PR professionals to gather to glean insights from the juries, points of view from thought leaders, and network with colleagues from different agencies and companies from around the world. It can’t be missed!

I hope to see you at the Cannes festival, where we can push forward the power of PR-thinking from around the world, inspire others, and be inspired!

 

For more information about the Cannes Lions Festival of Creativity visit: www.iccoguidetocannes.com

Winning at Cannes – an Interview with Tom Beckman, Prime PR

Swedish agency Prime has received more Cannes Lions awards than any PR agency since the creation of PR Lions in 2009. Cannes Lions interviews Tom Beckman, Executive Creative Director and Senior Partner of Prime PR, about what it’s like to win and the affect on the agency.

Tell us about the foundations of Prime; where do the agency’s roots lie?

Our origin traces back to American political campaigning in the 90’s. That was probably the real birth of the channel agnostic approach – long before social media or even the internet. To build and activate a universe of communication assets under one common frame story is still a valid principle for us.

What is the philosophy of the agency?

Communications should have a value in itself beyond the product, idea or message its promotion. We try to create value that generates awareness – not create awareness that generates value.

How did you first learn about the Cannes Lions Festival?

The founder of legendary ad agency Forsman Bodenfors took us there. He introduced us to the festival and how to use the insights from the festival to grow our business. And we’ve been there ever since. For our delegates it’s all work and (almost) no play – see all the seminars, look at all the case reels, and bring home the insights.

When did you know you were ready to enter?

We started to compare our work with the best work out there from all agencies, not just PR agencies. And the only way to do that is start building your own case videos. We didn’t know if we were ready when we entered the first time – I guess you must just start somewhere and build from your experiences and learnings.

Tell us about the experience of winning your first Lion.

A shortlist is really a remarkable achievement. In fact – the way I evaluate our performance is the number of shortlists divided by the number of different campaigns entered (not multiple entries of the same campaign). That gives you a good idea of the strength of your agency. To win a Gold – that’s special of course. People don’t realize how big the audience actually is on that stage – it’s insane.

How do you choose the work to enter into Cannes?

Sometimes the clients take the initiative, sometimes it’s the team. Regardless we make sure that the work can represent us and our clients. Entering in the right category is important of course. The fact that a good case fits in a lot of categories proves how integrated the industry is today.

Since first entering in 2010 Prime has been awarded 14 PR Lions alone – what impact has this had on your business?

It has given us access to pitches we didn’t get have before. And going head to head with ad agencies forced us to up our game even more. It has led to more CMO budgets and to a ticket to play on an international arena.

How did winning influence the culture of your team?

It has changed the way clients look at us obviously. But more importantly it has created an internal culture of living up to our own requirements and expectations. We now benchmark with the best – and that’s a painful but rewarding relationship to your own work. It has helped us break free from limiting industry definitions.

What advice would you give PR agencies looking to enter work into PR Lions?

Cannes Lions is about ideas. Make sure your unique idea comes through. And then validate the relevance of that idea through engagement from stakeholders and media. Getting a lot of clippings is not enough – all decent campaigns in Cannes have that. Instead make sure to focus on the problem and the solution – what did you solve and why was it important? And show how the idea came to life and became a part of society or discussion.

 

Young PR Stars Compete for Chance to Represent their Country at Cannes Lions

The hottest competition for PR’s young talent has kick-started across the globe, with teams competing for the chance to represent their country at the Cannes Lions International Festival of Creativity.

Over 22 local Young Lions PR Competitions are underway in countries including Brazil, China, Russia, Italy, Turkey and the USA.

Last week the UK competition was won by Matt Watson and Paul Stollery of Hotwire, who were up against 40 teams around the UK. The French Young Lions place was won by the Havas Worldwide Paris team of Daniel Saltsman and Fabien Aufrechter. The winners of other local competitions will be announced over the next two months.

The winning pairs will be sent to Cannes, France in June to compete at the international PR competition, which is part of the world’s largest advertising and communications event Cannes Lions.

To take part in the challenge, entrants must be 30 years of age or younger, and be working in the PR industry. Teams of two respond to a charity brief in 24 hours, and shortlisted candidates will have their PR strategy judged by an expert jury.

The International Communications Consultancy Organisation (ICCO) is the proud sponsor of the Young Lions PR Competition for the third consecutive year. ICCO has also sponsored ‘The House of PR’ cabana for the Festival week. If you are interested in sub-sponsoring ICCO’s participation at Cannes Lions in 2016 please contact ICCO General Manager Charlene Corrin.

The 63rd International Festival of Creativity takes place on 18th – 25th June 2016.

 

About ICCO
The International Communications Consultancy Organisation (ICCO) is the voice of public relations consultancies around the world. The ICCO membership comprises national trade associations in 33 countries across the globe in Europe, Africa, Asia, the Americas and Australia. Collectively, these associations represent some 2,500 PR firms.
www.iccopr.com

About The Cannes Lions International Festival of Creativity
The International Festival of Creativity, also known as Cannes Lions, is the world’s leading celebration of creativity in communications. Founded in 1954, the Festival takes place every June in Cannes, France. As the most prestigious international annual advertising and communications awards, over 40,000 entries from all over the world are showcased and judged at the Festival. The Festival is also the only truly global meeting place for advertisers, advertising and communication professionals. More than 12,000 delegates from 95 countries attend a week-long programme of exhibitions, screenings and talks by worldwide thought leaders. As the networking and learning opportunity of the year, Cannes Lions is the must-attend event for anyone involved in brand communications.

www.canneslions.com

 

 

 

ICCO appoints Charlene Corrin as General Manager

The International Communications Consultancy Organisation (ICCO) has appointed Charlene Corrin to the role of General Manager, who joins from a key role at Lions Festivals, organiser of the Cannes Lions.

Corrin will be responsible for all aspects of the day-to-day running of ICCO, assisting the Chief Executive, President and Board of Management to set the overall strategy for the organisation, communicating key trends of interest to the worldwide PR industry, and organising the annual ICCO Global Summit and ICCO Global PR Awards.

She was formerly the PR Lions Awards Manager for Lions Festivals, responsible for management of the PR awards at the Cannes Lions International Festival of Creativity, Spikes Asia, Eurobest and Dubai Lynx events.

Corrin began the role on 14th March 2016, replacing Binta Hammerich, who steps down after successfully running the organisation since January 2015. ICCO was recently named Best International Association at the Association Excellence Awards 2016.

Corrin will report directly to Francis Ingham, ICCO Chief Executive, and Maxim Behar, ICCO President.

Prior to working for Lions Festivals, Charlene worked in the United Arab Emirates, Australia and New Zealand producing conferences, business summits and incentive events. Originally from New Zealand, Corrin has a background in communications and a keen interest in the creative industries.

Corrin said: “I am thrilled to be joining this world leading organisation at such an exciting time for the PR industry. I will be focusing my attention on refining the organisation’s current programmes and events, and continuing to drive engagement initiatives and recognition for our members on a global platform. I’m looking forward to the opportunities and challenges ahead.”

Ingham said: “I’m very pleased to be welcoming Charlene to the role of General Manager at ICCO. With her background in world class marketing events such as Cannes Lions, she is the perfect person to take our award-winning international association from strength to strength.”

Behar said: “We all are excited to welcome Charlene Corrin to ICCO and having in mind her experience, personal qualities and ambition we are more than sure that day-to-day management of the organisation will be in good and reliable hands. ICCO has grown tremendously over the past three years from the point of view of global coverage, quality of training and high level events. Both the ICCO Global Summit and the ICCO Global Awards are real trend setters in the world of modern PR. Charlene will have the important task of continuing this growth in the same speed and even faster.”

ENDS

About ICCO
The International Communications Consultancy Organisation (ICCO) is the voice of public relations consultancies around the world. The ICCO membership comprises national trade associations in 32 countries across the globe in Europe, Africa, Asia, the Americas and Australia. Collectively, these associations represent some 2,500 PR firms.
www.iccopr.com

The PR World At Cannes 2015

Written by Arun Sudhaman

arunPrint@Arunsudhaman

PR industry presence is more visible than ever, seven years after the Festival launched the PR Lions category.

2015 marks the seventh edition of the Cannes PR Lions, which will age anyone who remembers the first instalment in 2009 — a rainy recession-hit week that featured Lord Bell as PR jury chair and a Grand Prix for Tourism Queensland’s iconic ‘Best Job in the World’ campaign.

A lot, of course, can change in seven years, even if Cannes’ ability to draw huge crowds and generate eye-catching revenues remains reasssuringly constant. As one of the few to make the trek in 2009, I can vouch for how the the PR industry’s presence has grown considerably since then. Indeed, I have been to every Cannes since, and we have charted the PR world’s emergence at Cannes in some detail.

That will continue this year at our dedicated Cannes section, where you can already watch an interesting video with Cannes Lions CEO Phil Thomas, exploring the Festival’s evolution and his tips for work that will win.

You will also find plenty on the themes that continue to resonate at Cannes, particularly from a public relations perspective. In 2014, for example, Paul Holmes penned an authoritative analysis of why PR firms have struggled to win top honours in the awards category that bears its name. It is an issue that, hopefully, has begun to recede, as the PR industry stakes its claim for greater marketing relevance, bigger budgets, and more creative talent.

Part of that quandary, of course, involves actually showing up in front of the droves of senior marketers that decamp to the Croissette every year. Many of you, with some justification, probably still view Cannes as a giant boondoggle. Yet there must be some value in demonstrating that public relations people are ready to play a more central brand-building role in today’s converged media environment, and compete for the talent and budgets that can make this happen.

It is an argument that the PR world appears to have bought into, judging by the industry’s heightened presence throughout the week. In addition to the PR Lions itself, this means there are now numerous ‘fringe’ events involving PR firms and senior marketers, a couple of which the Holmes Report is involved in. And ICCO has this year created the PR industry’s first physical presence at Cannes, via its House of PR venue.

In terms of the official Cannes programme, meanwhile, here are some key events that include PR industry involvement:
WORDS & PICTURES BY BACARDI: TELLING STORIES PEOPLE CARE ABOUT

Hosted by Citizen and Bacardi

Hosted by Ketchum Sounds
Hosted by Richard Edelman and Jamie Oliver

Hosted by BlueCurrent Japan

Hosted by Flamingo

Of course, boundaries are blurring so rapidly that most Cannes sessions, in reality, will involve some sort of meditation on classic PR themes such as storytelling, earned media and authencity. Still, it’s safe to say that the PR world has well and truly arrived on the Croissette. See you there.

Original Article from Holmes Report

What Does Success Look Like?

Print@HK_London

The UK’s Young PR Lions, Helen Wood and Rachel Matovu, share their highs and lows from Cannes Lions.

This is a question we hear from clients and colleagues on a near daily basis in the PR world. From coverage targets and social media metrics, to driving forward brand preference and changing behaviour; we are constantly measuring our work against the goals we set ourselves.

Being picked as the UK team for this year’s Young PR Lions in Cannes got us thinking a lot about this same question in the context of our own quest for success. It started with the goal of being shortlisted by the PRCA to present our campaign, which was followed by a huge sense of elation at being chosen to represent the UK at Cannes. We at first had succeeded in our ambition to respond to the brief and craft a campaign that we were proud of, and then in realising the even greater ambition to make it to Cannes.

In Cannes, we were in the midst of the competition again with the same ambition to win the gold medal. With 12 hours to turn around a charity brief and a pitch to deliver the very next day, the adrenaline was peaking. When the results were revealed only a few hours later, and we didn’t get awarded a medal, we were not only thoroughly disappointed, but somewhat embarrassed to tell our colleagues who had so much enthusiasm and pride for us. It’s so easy to let an apparent failure make you reassess your abilities and question your process. Both of us like to keep things light hearted and resorted to joking about the awards as though it was no big deal, but the truth was that keeping in mind the journey of our destination is essential to stay on course.

However, success comes in many forms, and with the support of our colleagues and friends, we faced our apparent setback and dragged ourselves into reality. We were at the centre of the most influential event in our industry, had access to the some of the most exciting and current conversations and were soaking it all up. We had momentum and we were riding it and would continue to use this experience as a step in our careers.

Our Director of Social, Candace Kuss, recently did a talk at one of Google’s firestarters events where she revealed how her own career and life unfolded; how she always wanted to  move to London from California but the path she ended up taking wasn’t the one she expected. Hearing Candace’s story we realised the difference between short terms goals and long term dreams.

Listening to a talk from the Sky cycling team yesterday we were intrigued to hear how they make minute changes in their processes to better their performance – these are short terms goals, and some of them may not work out but the bigger dream they are hoping to realise is to win the Tour de France. This was preceded by Jamie Oliver, who spoke passionately about his fight to eliminate unhealthy food from the family table. He surely must have some goals he needs to hit along the way – views on his FoodTube channel, sales of his book, getting funding for his next documentary. But all of these are steps towards a greater ambition, one which might not even be realised in his lifetime.

Having a one to one with Jamie unfortunately wasn’t an option, but we did enjoy a drink with the Young PR Lions winners from Sweden, who told us the story of how they had competed last year and not “succeeded”. They came back this year with plenty of learnings and an even greater determination to win.

The great thing about Cannes is that you don’t know where it might take you. It’s really all about incremental success and if you are happy with your choices and how it has contributed to either making your goals more of a reality or solidifying your own identity then your overall confidence will grow.  We also believe it’s also not always about you as an individual, as sometimes watching the success of other people is as rewarding as having your own wins. It’s concrete evidence of what is possible and keeps you on course to reach for the same results.

Right now our goal is to enjoy the rest of the week, share in the success of others and learn as much as we can. We are extremely privileged to take the learnings of such an inspiring crowd of people and apply it to our own work.

Original Article from Homles Report.

2015 Cannes Lions Cheat Sheet

By MitchCommGroup 

bright-thoughts-logoPrint@mitchcommgroup

This week is the 2015 Cannes Lions International Festival of Creativity. Cannes Lions recognizes and awards the year’s best creative ideas across 16 categories, covering everything from traditional print and film communications to technology and product design.

Cannes Lions believes creativity is the driving force for business, for change and for good. Like Mitchell, the Festival honors and inspires creative bravery to change the course of communications. The awards set a global benchmark for good creative, and the Festival connects those with a similar vision.

Whether you are walking the streets of Cannes or following from across the globe, have a look on Mitchell Communications Blog to find out more about the cheat sheet to get the most out of Cannes Lions.

Young Lions PR competition springboards fresh talent for a 2nd year; ICCO continues partnership

CL-LOGO-AZUR.jpg

The Cannes Lions International Festival of Creativity has announced, that after a successful launch year, the Young Lions PR Competition is set to return at the 2015 Festival.Offering its support and commitment, the International Communications Consultancy Organisation (ICCO), will continue its partnership with the 2015 competition.

Steve Latham, director of talent & training, Cannes Lions said: “The competition provides a real opportunity for young PR professionals to showcase their talent on a global stage. With a carefully chosen charity providing the brief, it’s also humbling to know that the work they produce can make a real difference – with the charity being given the option to adopt and use the winning campaign. I’m delighted that the ICCO are on-board for a second year, helping us to once again springboard both talent and awareness.”Competitors, who are first decided at regional competitions, are given 24 hours in Cannes to pit their skills against each other and show how PR can be effectively used to engage audiences with an organisation or a specific topic that the ‘client’ is dealing with. They are then asked to present to a dedicated jury who will decide which team is worthy of taking Gold.

David Gallagher, president of ICCO said: “ICCO is committed to promoting the value of PR consultancy worldwide and we see the Young Lions PR competition as an opportunity to show a little swagger under a global spotlight.  Last year’s debut was a smash hit and we’re eager to give our gifted young professionals an opportunity to shine again in 2015.”

ICCO, the representative body of forward thinking PR agencies, will be present at Cannes Lions with its “House of PR” cabana situated at the beachfront alongside the pavilion. This will be the place to meet prominent representatives of the PR industry and learn more about ICCO international activities. PR delegates attending the Festival are welcome to visit and attend networking events from 22 -24 June. More information is available at the ICCO Guide to Cannes website.

Cannes Lions will take place from 21-27 June in Cannes, France. A comprehensive learning programme designed to accelerate essential training across all career levels and disciplines is available during the event, as well as Young Lions Competitions for Print, Media, Cyber, Film, Design and Marketers. Further information on how to be part of it can be found at www.canneslions.com

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