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Creative Effectiveness

The Creative Effectiveness Lions celebrate the measurable impact of creativity. Entries will need to demonstrate hard results over the long term; that is how the work drove tangible business effects, was instrumental to cultural change or integral in the achievement of brand purpose.

"The Creative Effectiveness Lions are the ultimate accolade in our business because they recognise the work that does best, validating the correlation between exceptional creativity and outstanding results."
Andrew Robertson, President and CEO, BBDO Worldwide, 2016 Creative Effectiveness Jury President
  • A number of criteria will be considered during judging and weighted as follows: 25% idea; 25% strategy; 50% impact and results.
  • The same piece of work can be entered a maximum of four times across the Creative Effectiveness categories.
Eligibility for Creative Effectiveness Lions only
To be eligible your work must have won or been shortlisted at Cannes Lions 2014, 2015 or 2016.

Need help? Get in touch, we're happy to talk you through the process. We also offer an Advisory Scheme, you can find all the details below.

Explore the new categories below:


    Within your submission for Creative Effectiveness we will require the following:

    400 word summary

    3,000 word submission answering the following questions:
    What were the objectives for the creative work?
    What was the strategy behind the creative work?
    What was the creative work?
    What effect did it have in the market?
    Explain if there were any other factors that may have impacted on the effectiveness of your campaign
    What was the commercial gain for your client as result of running the creative work?
    What do you think this case adds to our understanding of how creativity can be effective?

    If your entry has previously been entered into Creative Effectiveness you will need to provide a brief synopsis that outlines the previous iteration of the entry, as the jury will not have access to previous years’ papers.

    Supporting Material

    Entrants will not need to supply support materials. The original entry will be shown purely for context and it will not be considered as part of the 2016 judging criteria. It is not necessary to resupply materials as it in the festival archive.

    Additional Information

    All entries must be paid for and completed online at www.canneslions.com. You will not need to send your submission(s) to the Cannes Lions office.
    Entrants must use the template provided. We will not accept any other formats. Other formats will be returned for resubmission.
    Entrants must adhere to the word count limit of: Summary: 400 words and Written Submission: 3,000 words. Failure to do so will result in the return of your entry until it falls within the limit. It must be returned by the deadline otherwise it will not be accepted into the competition.
    ALL entries will be published in full on both the Cannes Lions and World Advertising Research Center (Warc Ltd.) websites, with the exception of information entered into the CONFIDENTAL INFORMATION SECTION of the Entry Form. The organisers retain the right to publish information outside this section without prior notification.
    The Festival reserves the right to reorganise the entry format to ensure consistency, however we will not modify the content


    Can I still enter if I submitted the work into Creative Effectiveness in previous years? 
    You are still eligible to enter as long as you demonstrate the most recent results and campaign evolution since the time of your last Creative Effectiveness entry.

    What if the work was only shortlisted? Can it still win? 

    Creative Effectiveness is judged with different criteria to other categories, with a 50% focus on the results and effectiveness of the campaign, 25% on strategy and 25% on the idea. 

    Does the entry have to be submitted on the Entry Template?

    Yes it does, for consistency for the jury. Do I need to supply any supporting materials? Entrants will not need to resupply support materials, as they are in the Festival archive. The 2016 material will be shown purely for context and it will not be considered as part of the 2017 judging criteria. 

    Do I need to send a hard copy of the submission and appendix? 

    No, we have all of the necessary files electronically. 

    Are graphs, charts and appendix counted towards the word count?
    No, they are not. 

    What is the client approval letter? 

    Client approval and review of the submission means that the client has approved entry of the campaign into the category and that they have reviewed the paper and are happy for you to put it forward. Please ensure it is on company letter head and that the signatory includes their contact details. Download an example here.

    Creative Effectiveness Advisory Scheme

    The Effectiveness Partnership

    Cannes Lions and the Effectiveness Partnership
    The Creative Effectiveness Advisory Scheme has been established in association with The Effectiveness Partnership, who are also committed to raising the profile of effectiveness in the creative communications industry on a global scale.

    Introducing the new Creative Effectiveness Advisory Scheme
    This year Cannes Lions, in association with The Effectiveness Partnership, has created an Effectiveness Advisory Scheme to help prospective entrants with the development of their Creative Effectiveness Lions submissions. This scheme is part of the Festival's ongoing commitment to help clients and their agencies demonstrate the effectiveness of their campaigns.

    This means that people submitting entries for the 2017 awards can now benefit from some expert advice on what to consider when developing their effectiveness papers.

    The 2017 panel of advisors is made up of senior industry thought leaders and experts in strategy and analysis. Between them, they have won multiple effectiveness and strategy awards.

    If you are interested in getting some help with your submission, please register for a consultation with one of the advisors. Be quick though, assistance is allocated on a first-come, first-served basis.

    You will only be eligible for the Advisory Scheme if you have started your online submission and have committed to entering the 2017 Creative Effectiveness Lions.

    To register for this initiative, email creativeeffectiveness@canneslions.com.

    Meet the 2017 Advisors

    Merry Baskin

    Merry Baskin

    Partner, Baskin Shark Ltd

    Merry has spent over 30 years as a market researcher and strategic account planner across the globe and has worked across an impressive haul of international brands. She has headed up the planning departments at Chiat/Day New York and JWT London. Her efforts come highly decorated and have picked up numerous effectiveness awards and accolades along the way. Merry writes regularly for various industry publications and as a result she has been one of the most downloaded authors on WARC since 2011. She now runs a strategic planning consultancy, where brands must move forward or die!



    Lucy Jameson

    Lucy Jameson

    Lucy is a strategist and former CEO of Grey London. She resigned last year and is currently waiting to start up a new venture in the industry later in 2017. During her time at Grey, the agency won two Grand Prix at Cannes (for Volvo Lifepaint) and Euro Effies Effectiveness Agency of the Year 2015.

    Prior to Grey, Lucy spent nearly 20 years at BMP DDB, where she rose from grad trainee to Global Head of Planning. During her time leading planning, the agency won IPA Effectiveness Agency of the Year three times in a row.And then when she moved to Grey as CSO, Grey picked up IPA Effectiveness Agency of the Year for the first time ever. Lucy has both judged the Cannes Creative Effectiveness awards and won a Black Lion.

     Nikki Crumpton

    Nikki Crumpton

    Nikki has a career in the industry spanning over twenty years. Over the years Nikki has worked in the small independents, Fallon and Mother and the big corporates, DDB and MCcann. She has found both environments equally brilliant and full of opportunities that have helped educate and broaden her knowledge and skills over the years. Her passion for great creative work is still her focus, but how we get to, and execute ideas across a broader remit, most notably sustainability, innovation and technology and product design and creation, is increasingly her area of fascination. But for her the best award for creativity is an effectiveness award.

    How it works
    The Creative Effectiveness Advisory Scheme is open to all prospective entrants and is available on a first come, first served basis as allocations are limited.

    Cannes Lions, in association with The Effectiveness Partnership will facilitate an initial introduction but won’t be directly involved with the advisory process and can’t be held accountable for any advice given or acted upon.

    Only one advisor will be allocated per paper and they will offer up to three hours of their time.

    The advice will be given, in majority, over email correspondence. All other forms of contact (e.g. telephone, face to face) will be directly negotiated with each individual advisor following your initial introduction.

    Advisors are here to offer practical advice concerned with the structure and presentation of your submission. They will not be responsible for crafting the submission itself and are not liable in any form for the development of your submission.

    Please don't mention your advisor's name on your entry submissions as you are the author, this service is purely for advice on increasing the overall quality of your submission.