Young Lions 2018

Ollie Holman

To be taken to Cannes by Mindshare as part of the Young Lions is going to be amazing! It is the culmination of months of working on getting our best campaigns from across the globe entered into these awards. Cannes is the biggest and most prestigious awards of them all. To win a Cannes Lion is the stamp of approval that your work is one of the best campaigns of the year, and it’s not easy. Out of 3000 Media Lion entries last year, only 266 were short-listed, and only a handful of those went on to actually win. Mindshare has a good history of winning Lions and hopefully it’ll continue this year.  

My role in the Worldwide team and looking after the awards having given me the privilege of seeing the best work we are producing from around our network. This year I have high hopes for some new hardware to decorate our office’s with.

For me the best aspect of Cannes is the work. This is where the industry gets a glimpse of what the top dogs of adland deem to be the best work. We get to see the well-known, well-praised work win multiple awards, but we also get to see some of the unheard of campaigns that take the industry by storm.

Last year a campaign that did this for me was Snickers Hungerithm which took home 5 gold lions. This was a great campaign that used the internet user’s mood to set the price of Snickers bars. I loved this idea because it reconnected with the emotion of the audience in a time when a lot of advertising had become automated and distant from the viewer.

I see this trend of advertising becoming more human continuing this year. A campaign that Mindshare worked on, Nike Londoner, is another great example of this. Nike felt that they were losing relevancy with young Londoners, as the audience felt out of touch with the big stars like Ronaldo shown in the ads. The Mindshare team came up with the great insight that dispelled the common industry myth that Gen Z have a short attention span. Instead they found it is actually the opportunity to reach this audience is what is limited. So they created content that reached them on their terms, at their pace. Maybe I’m bias because I’m a Londoner but I hope this one does well in the awards!

We see this theme of taking it back to the human element cropping up quite a lot in the festival’s schedule. Is there anything more human than the emotion of music? That’s why the session I am most looking forward to is Youtube’s - What Matters Next. Global Head of Music at YouTube and Google, Lyor Cohen is a must see for me. His impressive career in the music industry is bound to have some incredible stories to share with us all.

The best thing about Cannes is that there is so much going on! The awards and sessions are just the tip of the iceberg. I want to fully immerse myself in as much as possible. From hearing some of the most interesting minds from inside (and outside) of the industry, to meeting the people who you speak to all year around on email but have never actually met, to the truly taxing task of attending the pool parties. I plan to do it all and I’ll come back with more knowledge, more friends from the network and probably more sunburnt.

Written by Ollie Holman