What If Cannes Celebrated The Worst In Advertising, Not The Best?

What If Cannes Celebrated The Worst In Advertising, Not The Best?

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Winning a Cannes Lions is huge in the industry. However, in this opinion piece on The Guaridan, Tom Goodwin at Havas Media questions whether the industry is too focused on itself and not enough on what the public thinks of advertising.


One of the oddest things about advertising is our continued focus on ourselves and not the general population.

We’re a relatively closed industry: we drink in the same pubs; we have industry gossip magazines; we seek to impress our bosses and keep our clients happy and think endlessly about the brands we work with. But we are detached from the reality of what real people think about them.

If we’re honest, as an industry, we prefer to be aligned facing our clients, not real people. We host endless debates about how fast digital will grow, whether TV is dead, what to do with iBeacons, but rarely do we focus on the public and how their behaviours are changing. No place demonstrates this more than the Cannes Lions festival.

Around 2010, I did something we rarely do, I spoke with members of the public about what they felt were the best ads of the day. Disturbingly, the ones they all liked, found funny and remembered, were terrible ads. They were dancing cars, talking babies, it was clear how little they knew about what was good advertising.

The last few Cannes Lions festivals show all the signs of the industry unbundling itself further from reality.

Read the full article here.

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