FCB promotes Cannes creative hero but will that be enough?

Say what you like about Cannes, it has a powerful ability to make careers for advertising creatives: like an appearance on Love Island, a Grand Prix can elevate you to celebrity status overnight.

And when everybody wants a piece of you, it’s easy to get your head turned. Canada doesn’t usually punch above its weight at Cannes, but this year FCB/Six in Toronto brought home two Grand Prix, for its “Destination Pride” and “Got Back to Africa” campaigns.

Ian Mackenzie, the ECD behind the winning work, has no doubt been in great demand since he returned from the French Riviera – particularly because both campaigns are dripping in purpose, which is so much in demand at the moment – and the agency is doing its best to hang on to him by promoting him to CCO.

Presumably the elevation comes with a big pay rise, but when your star is rising, the momentum can be hard to resist and a change of job title may not be enough to keep him in the long run. Mackenzie has been with FCB/Six for three years, and previously worked at KBS Toronto and Tribal Worldwide. With creative leaders in short supply, he may well be tempted over the border to the US by an even bigger pay packet.

Interpublic Group, which owns FCB, may have some bigger roles to offer Mackenzie in one of its larger agencies. From his statement, it sounds like R/GA might be a good fit, particularly as “Go Back to Africa” won in the creative use of data category, and “Destination Pride” for strategy.

Mackenzie said: “My work is driven by a fundamentally optimistic view of the interaction between technology and creativity. If we build diverse teams for brave clients operating in a highly complex marketplace, then their creative partners can run towards that complexity. A big part of my role involves merchandizing technological complexity to other creative thinkers. In this context, ideas are table stakes—execution is the differentiator..”

Here are the winning ads:

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About Emma Hall

Emma Hall
Emma Hall is the former London Editor of Ad Age, where she covered European marketing advertising, digital and media stories. She has written for newspapers including the Financial Times, The Guardian, The Times and the Telegraph, and was previously a section editor at Campaign. Emma started her career in New York as a researcher for a biography of Keith Richards.