In 2011, Canada won just one Gold, for Skittles.
Jam3 and The National Film Board won the Gold for Bear71, a highly immersive 20-minute interactive documentary about a female grizzly bear in Banff National Park that delivers a powerful message about the growing impact of humans on nature and wildlife.
“Everybody was really effected by it,” said Dré Labre, a Cyber judge and creative director at Rethink Toronto. “It was really good storytelling and there was a lot of emotion packed in the experience.”
Several of the judges talked about being “haunted by it” days after watching it, he said. “There is not a lot of interactive work that does that, that packs that emotion.”
The Silver Lion went to Agence Tuxedo and Dermablend for the “Go Beyond the Cover” video that shows how Dermablend can cosmetically erase all the tattoos on one of the most tattooed men in the world. The jury liked it because it was “a surprising example of extreme product demonstration,” said Labre.
The Bronze Lions went to Blast Radius and Nike’s Jordan Brand for “Choose Your Flight”—a Bronze Lion winner in Mobile on Tuesday—and Grey Toronto for “World’s Most Valuable Social Network.” (See below)
Jury president Ian Tait, executive creative director for Google Creative Lab, started the press conference Wednesday morning by saying the jury had awarded a fairly high number of Silver and Bronze Lions because the quality of the work was strong overall. However, he added, “There weren’t that many things that blew us away.” Consequently, Gold Lions were comparatively scarce—the jury awarded just nine in total along with two Grand Prix.
Those Grand Prix went to Volontaire Stockholm and the Swedish Institute for “Curators of Sweden,” more commonly known as @Sweden, and R/GA New York and Nike for “Nike+Fuelband.”
Launched last year, the @Sweden program hands the country’s official Twitter handle over to a different citizen each week. The objective is to put Sweden’s core values of openness, authenticity, caring nature and innovation into action.
“Ordinary Swedes are ‘@Sweden’ one week at a time. Tweet by tweet, the image of Sweden is built: dynamic, innovative and deep humanity. No censorship. No limits,” stated the official entry. However, that lack of censorship earned some negative headlines just last week, when the woman responsible for @Sweden that week posted some offensive comments about Jews.
Nike’s Fuelband is worn on the wrist and tracks movement by the wearer. Activity and calorie-burning goals can be set each day and the Fuelband provides real-time updates. Progress toward the goal can be tracked throughout the day by the colour of the lights on the band: red means the wearer has a ways to go, green means the goal has been met. The band synchs to computers and iPhones to provide more complete reports on activity day to day.
The two winners represent the “bookends” of the industry, said Tait.
“The @Sweden campaign is very simple, very smart and very brave,” he said. “It doesn’t have many layers, but the more you sit and think about it, the more exciting it is.”
Conversely “Fuelband” represents the other side of the industy. “It is a huge ambitious piece of work that had a lot of research and development, a lot of software development.”
“Both of these pieces are about brands behaving in a certain way. They are not about what they say, they are not about messages. They are about things that brands do.”
The importance of brand behaviour over brand advertising was a big theme as judges explained what they were looking for when scoring the work.
“The shift from story to behaviour is a big thing,” said AKQA creative director Rei Inamoto.
“The other thing I was glad to see validated is the shift from 360 to 365.
“There has been way too much obsession about 360 degrees of integration of communication when people don’t give a shit about a poster or a TV ad,” he said. Instead, brands need to come up with ways to play a meaningful role in people’s lives 365 days a year.
“And these two pieces [the Grand Prix], clearly make a statement about that fundamental shift.”