Ad Tech companies planted their flags on the Croisette, the runway for advertising execs en route to meetings and sessions at Cannes Lions. They arrived not as pirates, but as allies to increase the impact of advertising. The discussion this year revolved around incredibly impactful creative as always, but ventured deeper into how to measure consumer response after the creative is seen.
The infinite potential of great advertising comes full circle with data that can precisely pinpoint audience, measure reaction and tally the reinforcing cycle of word-of-mouth and social media marketing. Great advertising is born from the creative gut; great data enables it to be showcased in front of the right audience at the right time and place.
For the second year in a row, there were more entries in Outdoor than any other category (5,367), which speaks to the power, breadth and continual evolution of the oldest medium. In Clear Channel Outdoor's seventh year as sponsor of the Outdoor Lions, we showcased activations on Le Grand Screen, the world's largest digital rooftop billboard. We honed in on motion tracking, immersive gamification, social sentiment analysis, live news updates, user-generated photos, conditional-triggered content and a showcase of this year's winners. Hearty congratulations to Heineken New Zealand's "Brewtroleum" which took home the Outdoor Grand Prix and to the incredibly distinguished group of other winners.
To illustrate motion tracking/location-based marketing, our partner Placed displayed real-time movement of vehicles surrounding billboards in New York, Chicago and San Francisco. While Cannes delegates toasted glasses of rosé as night fell, our rooftop display showed the frenetic energy in cities across the Pond.
A proponent of out-of-home, Snapchat was omnipresent. There was no expansive beachside cabana spread, but their distinctive logo covered the front of the Palais, while their secret meeting space remained high on the scavenger hunt list of younger creatives. As talk amongst marketers continued to obsess on cracking the code of Millennials, it was increasingly clear that Snapchat has already nailed it. Let Millennials tell their stories, their way. Don't invade their space. If there is a value exchange, Millennials are willing recipients. And brands are following suit.
Even as we celebrated creative and found new ways to apply data, a theme I heard cropping up more than in recent year from ad execs I met was "Give me impact." It's a favorite topic of mine because out-of-home media delivers tremendous impact. Here's why:
For the creative, there is no visual more impactful than an outdoor canvas. For media planners, the location data provides precise delivery to the right audiences. For marketers, attribution provided by mobile data proves audience engagement and ROI. It's a win-win for everyone.
Now, can the creative and data geeks all get along?
Yes, we Cannes!
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