Overheard @ Cannes 2018
For many, renting a Yacht to host parties and hold meetings at Cannes Lions is the pinnacle of business acumen. It shouts ‘success’ to other delegates like nothing else. But not Facebook, Google, Snapchat, and Spotify. Their success is of course of a different order of magnitude – they sponsor entire sections of beach.
And significantly, they are all technology companies. Sponsored beaches, it seems, are a symbol of tech’s increasing influence on the creative industries that Cannes Lions was originally intended to celebrate.
I was at a Mediamath event talking with a friend working at Facebook. Cannes has always been a hotspot for creative guerrilla marketing tactics. Another in the group was launching next year at Cannes a four-story, LED-lit object suspended from beneath a helicopter. It could be a cube or any shape, so I suggested a “Like” button – which seemed to get a reaction. So, you never know, if you see a giant thumb hovering around above the harbor next year, you heard it here first.
Like last year much of the emphasis on transparency continued, with a lot of focus in 2018 being placed on “doing good”, with many of the award-winning campaigns reflecting that.
Aside from what was going down in the opulent surroundings of the Palais, here are a few hot topics that came up in and around the Croiset last week.
Oath Announces “Extended Reality (XR)” Ad Experiences at Cannes
Of particular interest to us was Oath’s announcement that they will be rolling out their “first-in-market” programmatic VR offering and interactive 3D ads. Great news! Although I’ve got to take (some) issue with their claim of being first out the door. NEXD has had a self-service, programmatic friendly AR, and 3D creative solution for over a year now. But, new challengers in this space are always welcome. So, welcome to the party Oath (we don’t have any chilled rosé left though).
Messenger is running autoplay video ads
Facebook’s most intimate platform is starting to push out autoplay video ads to users. Whether or not users find these ads intrusive, given the fact that Messenger is so intimate, remains to be seen. Couple that with there being no option to disable the ads themselves, there could be one or two user experience issues they will have to address at some point in the not too distant future.
AT&T in Talks to Acquire AppNexus for About $1.6 Billion
Although this was going down on the other side of the Atlantic, there was a lot of talk about the telecoms giant’s announcement that it plans to acquire adtech company, AppNexus. AT&T is looking to get a foothold in the digital ad space and take on the likes of Facebook & Google, so, watch this space.
“Put the human back at the center”
LVMH Global Brand Officer Mathilde Delhoume on growth: “It’s very tempting to focus on short-term growth, but if you only focus on short-term growth you will wake up with a bad hangover and no brand left,” said Delhoume. Brands need to “put back the human at the center—even if you do B-2-B there is a human,” said Delhoume, adding that they need to “provide a one-on-one human experience with consumers.”