Fresh from her role as president of the judging committee for the Cyber Lions at the Cannes Festival this year, Isobar Global CEO Jean Lin recently kicked off the company’s regular series of open-house seminars with a presentation about the work she presided over at the world’s most prestigious advertising festival. SHP took the opportunity to sit down with Lin to discuss Cannes and the current trends in Chinese advertising.
SHP: What are your thoughts on work that is made only for awards against work that is made to be effective in real campaigns?
As an agency, the most important thing is to create campaign effectiveness, not to win awards. However, having the desire to win awards is a good thing for all creatives. Awards push the industry forward. Some pro bono jobs that are created to help charities can coexist with commercial campaigns. Effectiveness is not integrated in our judging criteria. China is such a big market and the numbers are so big, that if effectiveness were the only benchmark, Chinese work would have won many awards.
Gisele Bundchen in the Under Armour – I Will What I Want campaign, Cyber Grand Prix winner at Cannes 2015
SHP: Are the Chinese entries competitive in a global competition like Cannes?
Work from China isn’t doing too well in competition this year. When you are competing against 3700 entries, what is crucial is how quickly the idea is made clear through providing the cultural context, the problem and the solution. You need to use no more than 30 seconds to make people understand why it is unique. Much of the work from China spends more time on the details of the ideas than clearly outlining the context. That’s a shame because often the context and the insights are very compelling. When you jump straight into the idea itself, it can lose sight of the bigger picture. Having a different culture is a plus when you enter into global competition. China can do a lot better in helping people to understand and be inspired by the solutions happening here.
Bindi Life Saving Dot, by Grey Group Singapore
“You can clearly see the connection between cultural context, problem and the solution. It’s so simple and it’s very compelling.
SHP: With such a large number of mobile users, do you see China exceling in mobile marketing campaigns?
China, and Asia Pacific in general, has a very good chance of creating innovative mobile solutions and leading the way in mobile marketing, and not just because of the user base. Mobile usage, mobile data and how mobile is linked with commerce and retail are all actually very advanced in China across all tiers of cities. In how many markets do you have the likes of WeChat and Alibaba contributing to a different way of purchasing, shopping and buying? That said, I don’t think we’ve articulated the solution particularly well in the way that it’s done yet.
SHP: How can marketers and advertising professionals develop their own skill sets to adapt to the new trends and remain competitive?
Based on the theory of 21st Century Learning Organization, there are eight must-have personal skills: 1) leadership 2) digital literacy 3) communication 4) emotional intelligence 5) entrepreneurship 6) problem solving 7) team-working and 8) global citizenship. It is a personal judgment whether one chooses to enhance their whole skill set, becoming stronger across the board, or to improve a single area and stand out. It is also a judgment what kind of team structure works for you.
SHP: What role does ‘Big Data’ play for agencies these days?
We need to come back to the basics and ask ‘why does our industry exist?’ It is to utilize insight that helps brands and businesses creatively solve their problems. Today, all these tools and devices help us to gain more insight into the things that we can analyze. Data drives insights and creativity. Data empowers businesses to make smart business decisions so they can solve their business challenges in a more targeted way. I think that’s the prerequisite of our industry and that has to come from all angles and all types of agency. I think technology will make this even better in the next few years. But we’re still on a long learning curve as an industry and as an agency.
The next Isobar event will be on September 10th
The event will focus on Isobar’s understanding of brand commerce and how they have developed a system to leverage big data to support brand marketing decisions.
吉赛尔·邦辰，Under Armour——I Will What I Want战役，2015年戛纳网络竞赛单元获奖作品
Bindi Life Saving Dot，葛瑞集团新加坡办公室
林女士引用了Smart汽车的Dancing Traffic Light Manikin广告，作为交互式广告战役它非常出色。