Biz Stone's Twitter talk this afternoon was met with a full auditorium, people clamoring for places to park cameras and laptops so they could livetweet questions in real time.
Kind of a neat format. Stone addressed questions as they appeared under hashtag #hkcannes, the results of which were projected onto a screen. Two problems with this method:
1) Wifi outside the press room isn't accessible for free, meaning those that livetweeted from inside the room were either paying for use or mobiling it up. Questions were never taken directly from audience members, raising their hands, for example.
2) Questions were still for the most part selected by a Hill & Knowlton rep. I'm pretty sure the Oracle of Delphi had a less formidable filtering system.
Stone talked a bit about Twitter's birth, which I'm sure will become the stuff of online legend, so I don't really need to go into it. (Hey look, here it is.) One point of interest: his partner, Jack Dorsey, conceived the idea out of a fascination with AIM status updates.
This is beyond weirdly creepy. Or is it creepily weird? Or is it just bad? Or wrong? Whatever. It's made by an ad agency that's going to Cannes for the first time so, of course, it's full of all sorts of inanity not to mention a tiny red Speedo...a version of which arrived at our doorstep this morning, no less! And no, we are not going to wear it lest we want to be a poster boy for Donny Deutsch.
Yes, Red Tettemer is going to Cannes and they've brought their red Speedos along. Not to mention a lot of other weird shit. Have fun, guys.
This year was the first year Cannes recognized PR's role in getting a brand message across, so PR people just about creamed themselves getting here. Even Hill & Knowlton couldn't help but say something smug about it before passing the mic to Biz Stone this afternoon.
Yeah, you guys are in the door, woo woo.
We're not gonna sit out and type the full list of trophy bait; that's what the Cannes Lions awards subsite is for. But here are the Grand Prix winners in all three categories, and a few nice PR Lion winners, too.
For PROMO: "Yubari" for Yubari Resort (Japan), by Beacon Communications/Tokyo.
I didn't really understand the beauty of this campaign until it was explained to me in full. Apparently Yubari used to be a miner town, and when the mines closed and all the miners left, the city was hurting for cash.
Beacon was enlisted to address the problem. In its research of Yubari it discovered something compelling: that its inhabitants do not divorce. Ever. For whatever reason, probably having to do with that it was damn-near deserted, marriages there maintain a 100% success rate.
Silver bullet in tow, Beacon immediately positioned Yubari as the place to insure your happily ever after. The campaign was ridiculously successful in the first year, with newlyweds angling from far and wide to visit. And that's how a small minor town became Japan's City of Love.
For DIRECT and PR: "Best Job in the World" for Tourism Queensland (Australia), by Cumminsnitro. Well-deserved -- this was truly ambitious work from an agency that was hardly on the radar before this year.
So there you have it. Now see below for some nice PR Lion notables.
Clowns give me mixed feelings. Having seen Killer Klowns from Outer Space at too young an age, they terrify me. And having watched a clown dejectedly make unwanted balloon animals at a party where all the kids were too old, they also make me inexpressibly sad.
Anyway, Ronald McDonald was outside the Palais today, wearing jetpacks of all things. He was doing this big dog and pony show for whoever reared a camera in his direction. Seeing him made me frightened, and when I'm scared I get mad, hence the venomous video.
Maybe it's our short attention span. Maybe it's our overly simplistic mind. Maybe it's our aversion to creative full of distracting hack job jumble cuts and irrelevant metaphors. Whatever it is, we had to watch these two DDB West-created, Epoch Films-produced Wells Fargo commercials a few times before we realized they touted the organization's online banking services and automatic savings programs.
Come one Epoch! You guys did that awesome JCPenney commercial. Granted you submitted it illegally to Cannes last year but still. Who got their hands on this Wells Fargo work? Your interns?
Not exactly the way to compliment your potential customers but fun none the less is Are You Popular, a website for UK-based Phones 4U which analyzes photographs to determine what makes a person such a loser.
Basically, it's a lame send-t-a-friend that, well, doesn't really accomplish anything at all other than letting you insult your friends and get insulted yourself.
As part of his research project "about the future model of advertising" for thesis work at the Berlin School of Creative Leadership, AlmapBBDO Creative Director Sergio Mugnaini created a Mad Men-themed online research survey that's very cool. The survey takes scenes from Mad Men and dubs the survey questions right into the scene. Way more interesting than page after page of plain text. Ingenious, actually.
Remember Tom Dickson from BlendTec? He's the guy who tosses stuff into a blender infomercial-style. Mullen grabbed him for a video that promotes a new Olympus camera. Tossing everything from an SLR to a point and shoot to a lens to an HD camcorder to a voice recorder to some sweet art, Tom blends up a master piece: The Olympus EP1, the ultimate gadget.
Oddly, the thing looks like it came out of the fifties but some Olympus designer probably that that'd be all retro-cool.
- Six Apart offers VideoEgg's scroll-proof Twig ad unit to bloggers.
- How not to be an idiot at PR as illustrated by an idiot doing his own PR.
- So yea, everyone loves Crispin Porter + Bogusky's work for Burger King. Great stuff, right? Wins lots of awards. All good, right? Well, no. From 2003, one year before Crispin took on the account, to 2008, the chain's market share fell to 14.2% from 15.6% while McDonald's grew from 43.6% to 46.8%. draw your own conclusions.
- Under Armour is out with its first football work this week. Its UA Create and UA Dominate boots hope to compete with Nike and Adidas premium boots.
In the "this absolutely has to be a spoof" category, comes Pet Airways, an airline that's all about your little furry one. The pets get to fly in the main cabin rather than below and are cared for inflight by airline personnel. Yes, it's true. And it's not a spoof.
The airline, created by Alysa Bunder and Dan Wiesel ans operated by Suburban Air Freight, will begin flight in July with service to D.C., New York, Chicago, Denver and Los Angeles. Each flight costs $149.
And, no, the pet owners do not fly in the cargo hold along with their pets. They have to find their on mode of transportation.