Though the design category at Cannes Lions recognises one aspect of branding, it fails to look into the brand strategy behind the design and thus fails to recognise the core creativity of the projects it judges.
The Cannes Lions award winners in the design category demonstrate the many diverse applications of strong design work. The Grand Prix winners are Volvo UK and Grey London for Life Paint, a reflective spray for cyclists that is invisible in the light. Gold winners include BBDO Pakistan for Not a Bug Splat, a giant art installation targeting predator drone operators, and Dentsu Inc. Tokyo, for Get Back, Tohoku with East Japan Railway Company, the posters and billboards encouraged visitors to get back to Tohoku, a region in Japan.
Entries from the USA and Japan performed particularly well. Burger King’s Proud Whopper campaign, which delivered a message about equality in celebration of Pride in San Francisco, also won a gold in the PR Lions on Tuesday night.
However, of the 12 campaigns awarded Gold Lions, none were submitted by dedicated branding agencies. Advertising and marketing agencies still make up the majority of award winners, an indication that Cannes currently retains its traditional advertising focus.