Paul Yole's Cannes Diary: Day one and two

PAUL YOLE_ CANNES.jpgThe Brand Agency's Paul Yole has written for the Campaign Brief Cannes blog for the last seven years. He's at it again this year.

The first session of the 2013 Cannes Lions was crap.

Or to be more accurate, it was about crap. Bob Garfield introduced the GE Focus Forward project. The project, which is subtitled Short Films, Big Ideas is an award-winning series of 30 three-minute stories about innovators--people who are reshaping the world through act or invention--directed by the world's most celebrated documentary filmmakers.

Some of you may have seen the story of the invisible bicycle helmet that is part of the series.
It's an inspiring project and we had one of the project's film-makers, Jessica Yu, on stage to talk about her work.

One of the films Jessica made was for a project called World Toilet which is run by a guy called Jack Sim aka Mr Toilet. Jack told us how he started the cause in order to improve the world's sanitation problems.

It's believed that 40% of the world's population does not have proper sanitation and Jack reckons part of the problem is that toilet matters are a bit of a taboo subject. He wants to get people to think about it by, well, talking shit.

His light hearted and frank approach seems to be working, with World Toilet Day on November 19 out-trending the mighty Justin Bieber on social media. Now he has partnerships with all sorts of organisations including Unicef and the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation.

Perhaps we should stop calling it a cause and call it a movement instead. A bowel movement, perhaps?

Day Two

I wasn't intending to go to the Coca Cola session as I figured I could just watch Jonathan Mildenhall on You Tube instead.

I'm glad I changed my mind.

Jonathan and his colleague, the big-brained Ivan Pollard, took us on a tour of the history of Coca Cola's social heritage. I must admit I once thought that Coca Cola's 'Work that matters' philosophy may abut a bit worthy but when you see almost sixty years of great Coke ads promoting harmony and happiness you realise they are onto something very powerful.

Coca Cola Pic.jpgEver since Mary Alexander was chosen as Coca-Cola's first female African-American model back in 1955, the company has been blazing a trail in addressing important social issues such as racial and gender equality.

The latest work from Coca Cola India and Pakistan, Small World Machines, (via Leo Burnett Sydney) is the latest example of the kind of work that has brought them the title of Creative Marketer of the Year at this festival. It received thunderous applause when it was played today.

How they go in dealing with obesity, I'm not so sure but they seem a pretty determined bunch. As Ivan Pollard so eloquently put it, "Our brands must be and do before they have the right to say."

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