Despite glorious sunshine, an ominous cloud appeared over myself and my fellow press jurors Cannes last week; ‘Is press dead?’ it asked. Three intense-days of judging later, the cloud and this naive question disappeared; replaced by a more positive and relevant one, ‘What is the new role for press in this uber-digital world?’
Having joyfully scrutinized the best print work in the world with my esteemed colleagues; elegantly lead by Mark Tutssel, I realised that the answer lies in the purity and art of print.
We should celebrate the power of well-crafted copy and exquisite art direction which combined with brave ideas is still one of the most powerful tools we have. Print is one of the only mediums you can create an intimate connection with the reader; as you read it in your hands or as it stops you in your tracks.
What we might take from this is to be less digital and more analogue, more real. Print can inspire, intrigue and fill you with goosebumps. It creates more intimacy between the brand and the audience.
Billboard, Almap BBDO Sao Paulo; Scrabble, Ogilvy Mexico; St. John Ambulance, BBH London; Volkswagen, DDB London and Dixons, M&C Saatchi London prove this. Press is alive and flying high.
Despite all this glorious work, press, a category famous for capturing most of the Lions was almost empty. The usual suspects, like cars, FMCG, clothing and home electronics clearly abandoned press. Budget migration to the sexy “alternative media world” was clearly felt.
When it came to choosing the Grand Prix (no point adding further to the massively covered final scandal), we had two clear winners, Billboard and Scrabble. Both celebrated the purity and unseen creative genius of press; pristine art direction, engaging copywriting and an ignitable concept. In the end victory was Billboard’s with its essence of music piece. A concept born for press; but truly expansive way beyond print. The campaign, a golden lion winner in Design and a strong Cyber entry is clear proof of how the new print can interconnect with other disciplines and celebrated without losing power or uniqueness. Like the sunshine, pure print excellence shone in Cannes too.
By Christoph Becker, Chief Creative Officer at b2b agency, gyro