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Surprising ideas. Great results

The Creative Effectiveness Lions reward work that demonstrates the measurable impact of creativity. And that means that they awards some rather surprising campaigns that still manage to deliver impressive results.

created on Wednesday 1 Mar 2017

We’ve picked out five quirky campaigns that all won big in the Creative Effectiveness Lions, proving that sometimes it’s the out-there ideas that really resonate with people.

The one that demonstrated there is nothing more provocative than the truth 

See the credits in the Cannes Lions Archive

‘Raising Eyebrows And Subscriptions’ for the Economist
Proximity London
Gold Creative Effectiveness Lion 2016

Smart data segmentation and provocative headlines helped this digital campaign change perceptions of the Economist in a campaign that delivered £51.7 million in lifetime revenue and a marketing ROI of 25:1.

The one with the action hero

See the credits in the Cannes Lions Archive

‘Live Test Series’ for Volvo Trucks
Forsman & Bodenfors
Creative Effectiveness Grand Prix, 2015

This campaign for Volvo Trucks by Forsman & Bodenfors used bold creative ideas and spectacular entertainment content to get people all over the world talking about trucks while staying highly relevant for its core audience. Sales increased 24% as a result.

The one where a shepherd became a national celebrity

See the credits in the Cannes Lions Archive
‘Ghita, The Social Shepherd’ for Vodafone
McCann Worldgroup Romania 
Bronze Creative Effectiveness Lion, 201


With the aim of promoting smartphone adoption, this content-powered campaign used social media to create a national celebrity in the shape of Ghita the shepherd. Smartphone sales outstripped feature phones for the first time ever.

The one that made negative press positive

See the credits in the Cannes Lions Archive

‘This Is Wholesome’ For Mondeléz International
Droga5
Gold Creative Effectiveness Lion 2015

Droga5 helped transform a campaign that received negative press into something beautiful and effective. By facing criticism for Honey Maid’s campaign head on, the agency was able to generate an earned social media response that included almost a quarter of a billion impressions, drive future purchase intent up by 12.7%, and increase penetration by 5.8%. All this resulted in a return of $3.81 on every media dollar spent

The one with Brad Pitt’s less famous brother

See the credits in the Cannes Lions Archive

‘How Brad Pitt's Bro' Helped Virgin Mobile Punch Above Its Weight’ for Virgin Mobile Australia
One Green Bean and Havas Worldwide Australia
Creative Effectiveness Lion 2014

By using Brad Pitt’s brother, Virgin Mobile were able to demonstrate their brand promise and deliver amazing results. The cheeky and surprising campaign delivered a 23% increase in acquisition targets and significantly reduced customer churn.

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