The Lions exists as a creative benchmark for this industry. ‘Standard candles’ that let others assess their own work in their light. They serve to highlight emerging trends and to spark conversations. And because companies enter from all around the world, the winners also provide a chance for people to see work from outside their own territory that they might otherwise have missed. Finally, because Cannes Lions honours applied creativity, the pieces that win also demonstrate exactly how bold ideas can deliver incredible business results.
In 2019, one campaign emerged as a perfect example of everything the Lions are built to celebrate: ‘AdDress The Future’ by Virtue Copenhagen. The work was created in response to a brief from Norwegian retail brand Carlings, as they prepared to open their first webshop. They wanted an idea that would create traffic and market share for an average webshop in a giant ocean of e-commerce.
"It was magical, memorable and groundbreaking"Rei Inamoto, Founding Partner, IxCo
On stage as he revealed the piece as a Grand Prix winner, Digital Craft Lions Jury President Rei Inamoto revealed that ‘AdDress The Future’ had sparked a lively debate during judging. In fact, he said that it was perhaps “the most intellectually stimulating” discussion he’d ever been part of in a jury room. The discussion happened because "the work confused the jury in the most interesting way".
"Why is it brilliant? It's not immediately obvious. It's gradually obvious... Yes it's for a specific audience, but the ambition this piece has is by far the biggest out of the winners we had."Rei Inamoto, Founding Partner, IxCo
Later in the Cannes Lions week, Digital Craft Lions Jury member Christian Waitzinger, Vice President, Executive Creative Director at Publicis Sapient, provided a little more detail around the debate. He explained that the piece forced the jury to ask themselves big questions about the relationship between the physical and the digital world.
For him, the work highlighted a new trend in how the attitudes of Millennial consumers is starting to have a profound impact on how retail functions. From this, the work prompted Christian and the jury to ask where this tension between the physical and the digital will end. “The fact that you still had to pay for the crafting” was interesting for the jury, and suggested that this piece was simply “the beginning of something… as it relates to our digital identity”.