The 5 Key Ingredients of Cannes Lions 2019’s Winning Recipe by Idea Bakery

The 5 Key Ingredients of Cannes Lions 2019’s Winning Recipe by Idea Bakery

As the boundaries between advertising, activism, content, entertainment and art continue to blur, being at Cannes Lions has never been more exciting. Looking back at this year’s festival from our kitchen with two decades’ worth of experience attending and working as Young Lions  trainers, we’ve baked the 5 main themes that emerged into inspiration that will continue to take brands forward from best-in-class cases. 

Here are the 5 key ingredients making up the winning recipes at the Cannes Lions Festival of Creativity 2019: a base of brand purpose, a sprinkle of sound, fandom in the flour, mixed equally with inclusivity and baked with creativity and business in equal measure. 


1.A Base of Brand Purpose

The almost decade-old purpose buzzword has evolved from philosophical storytelling to walking the talk (and being awarded for it as this was the overarching ingredient for major Grand Prix winners). Telling a story of your beliefs and values is not enough, you have to take a risk and act on it in reality, as evidenced with festival favourite Nike’s “Dream Crazy”,  The New York Times “The Truth is Worth It” campaigns and Carrefour’s Creative Effectiveness winner, “Black Supermarket”.

2. A Sprinkle of Sound

A largely untapped medium until the recent surge in voice activated AI and podcasts, sound offers a whole new landscape for functional storytelling and enriching heads-up user interactions. Both MasterCard and Visa gave keynotes around sensory sonic branding, revealing their campaign processes — MasterCard excelled for making theirs truly experiential, with a live performance by Lang Lang. Radio & Audio Native Advertising emerged as a new category of which Westworld’s Alexa integration became top winner.

3. Fandom in the Flour

Gaming culture and the power of fandom finally went mainstream this year, with Wendy’s Fortnite campaign recognition and the establishment of the Entertainment Lions for Sports and new sub-categories – tapping into fan culture and leveraging eSports as well as traditional “sportainment”.

4. Mixed Equally with Inclusivity

Through accessibility for those with disabilities or being inclusive of non-stereotypical gender needs, inclusivity won across categories for Creative Strategy Grand Prix recipient Volvo, Health and Wellness Grand Prix winner IKEA, Innovation Grand Prix winner Wavio’s SeeSound, Brand Activation & Experience Grand Prix winner Microsoft Xbox Adaptive Controller, Design Grand Prix winner Google’s Creatability and many more.

5. Creativity and Business in Equal Measure

Publicis Groupe CCO Nick Law’s keynote set the tone for the whole week, calling for creatives to stop hiding behind ideas and master integrating their ideas with new media rapidly, and organizations to build value through connective ecosystems by placing creatives in leadership roles to collaborate, not compete with traditional roles in operations and product. This theme was evident across categories and segments from Tiffany & Co spotlighting their new Chief Creative role to being the secret cultural recipe behind Burger King’s triple Grand Prix win and recent winning work from the last three years. With the rise of Chief Design Officer roles across traditionally non-creative industries it looks like the tide may be turning to make true convergence happen in business.

Keep in touch with us to book a session with us as we bake new ideas inspired by Cannes Lions 2019 Winning Recipe cases into our new annual Inspiration Feed.