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3 Key Takeaways From A Cannes Lions First Timer

This week's blog was written by Angela Wells, Oracle Social Cloud's Senior Director of Outbound Product Management.

Someone should have warned me… 

Oh, not about the lines for the main sessions, the temptation of the sea, or how many times I would hear the word “programmatic.” They should have warned me that this conference had more rosé wine and “networking” through exercising than any conference. Ever. 

If you’re in marketing or advertising, then I suggest you go. It’s useful to connect with so many people in the marketing and advertising technology space. (Be on the lookout for “madtech” term inevitably headed our way – like a celebrity couple mashup name.) 

If you go every year, then I suggest you share tips for how to get to those exclusive concerts without subjecting myself to the “attractive women only” mess.

Here are my key takeaways: 

Everyone was talking about data – what’s now possible and what’s going to be possible in the near future. The days of marketers pretending they barely need to understand math are long over; it’s essential to understand and embrace data to guide decisions. 
 
From a social marketing perspective, it’s fascinating to hear about the new capabilities to tie online advertising to subsequent in-store and online purchases. Oracle Data Cloud’s recent announcements with both Snapchat and Pinterest highlight efforts to help marketers understand the full impact of their online advertising across all purchases… and help the social platforms demonstrate their full impact to marketers.   

Certainly, “campaigns” are still a hot topic, but the emphasis has migrated to storytelling – across channels and over time, with the intention of building deeper connections with viewers. Even Will Smith was there to talk about storytelling, drawing parallels between making movies to advertising. (Will, apology accepted for “Wild Wild West.”)

The conference recently renamed itself: “The Cannes Lions International Festival of Creativity” to encompass the diversity of innovative advertising elements. (Side note: nominees paid for the privilege of being nominated.) In addition to learning that it may be possible to save the world by drinking beer (thanks, DB Breweries), it was inspiring to walk through the galleries and check out the finalists. I’ll drink to that!   

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