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Landor CCO Teemu Suviala: my Cannes Lions takeaways

What were the trends and themes at Cannes?

We saw more brands embracing the now, living in the moment, moving fast with the culture, favouring present over nostalgia.

Prime examples of this were the Grand Prix-winning DoorDash Super Bowl ad and Coors’ viral moment when Shohei Ohtani, the famed Japanese baseball player, damaged a billboard featuring a Coors Light ad. Coors capitalised on this event fast by creating commemorative Coors Light cans and new ads to honour that moment some other brands might have seen as a problem.

Humour is making a comeback. The ongoing poly-crisis has paralysed us to tackling the wicked problems and coping with the everyday with seriousness. However, there’s now a growing demand for joy, unexpected quirkiness, and absurdity. This trend was evident in CeraVe’s Grand Prix-winning campaign, which suggested that actor Michael Cera was the mastermind behind CeraVe skincare.

The same campaign also highlighted the rise of influencers and creators. Hundreds of influencers played a major role in making the Michael Cera story go viral. The creator economy is reshaping how consumers interact with brands, with many of them building networks of creators to maximize their impact.

AI is clearly no longer just hype; it’s now providing tools to enhance creative work, marketing decisions, and create more personalised and meaningful experiences. This was seen in the work and in panels across the week.

The best campaigns relied on the simplicity of an idea and design – such as the Coke-creators campaign, which focused on the classic Coca-Cola logo and celebrated hundreds of unofficial interpretations of it worldwide. Simplicity, when combined with bravery, always wins. It cuts through the noise, leaving a sharp, memorable, and impactful impression. Simplicity will continue to be the ultimate sophistication.

What worked and what did not?

There were many top speakers and an impressive program centred around creativity. However, design was noticeably absent from the festival. I hope Cannes will invite more industry leaders to help shape the design aspect of the festival moving forward.

What do you think Cannes 2024 means for next year’s festival and any trends to come?

The industry will continue to not just focus on keeping pace with cultural trends, but also creating them. The most successful and daring will inject more fun into their work, ranging from light-hearted wit to outright bizarre. Problems can be solved with a wink and a smile. As David Ogilvy said, “The best ideas come as jokes. Make your thinking as funny as possible.” More needed than ever.

Teemu Suviala is global CCO at Landor. Landor was shortlisted for the rebrand of Milan Symphony Orchestra (Rebrand/Refresh of an Existing Brand in the Design category.)

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