Anthony Svirskis' Cannes Diary #5

053aad31-b767-4d4d-a221-b196c7818f0f (2).jpgAnthony Svirskis, chief executive officer at Tribe is representing Australia on the Cannes Social & Influencer Lions jury. Svirskis, along with most of the other Australian and NZ jurors writes for CB.

Well, it's over. What a week. We had no blueprint for how to judge the winners of the inaugural Social & Influencer category, but here we are: The awards have been sent to their rightful homes, and I'm heading back to Melbourne.

After keeping everything under wraps, it was a relief to finally announce the winners to the world. Wieden + Kennedy and Nike's Nothing Beats a Londoner is hands down the campaign of the year, and couldn't deserve the Grand Prix more. It was incontestable.

London is maddeningly diverse: there was no way a one-size-fits-all approach would ever have worked. Peckham is nothing like Chelsea. South of the Thames is a different world to the North. Mess up your messaging and you'll piss heaps of people off.
fff1fe2c-1d2a-4e26-ace8-2b8710b08a3a (2).jpgThe reason it worked so perfectly was that it used real Londoners. The people you see on the street. Those who hold influence in their given areas. Local influencers with local language, and local dialects.

Specific targeting across myriad channels ensured that each message was relevant. A posho in Chelsea wouldn't get targeted messaging from a Peckham grime MC, for example. Marketing used to be about pushing messages to mass audiences, whereas today, the requirement is to have personal conversations at scale.

2498d6ab-b0ad-455c-b519-342f5759638b (2).jpgThe perfection of the campaign derives from its multifaceted nature. The complexity of multiple formats pushing stories through Snapchat, Instagram, YouTube. All separate, but impeccably intertwined. Never has such a mass-coordination of grassroots influencers taken place. This is really the bleeding edge of influencer marketing.

But the real beauty was the meticulous strategy prior to actually dropping the campaign. Impressively, it pretty much executed exactly as they expected. The format could be franchised, replicated in major cities around the world. Let's hope they do. This wasn't something just adland was talking about. Everyone in London was talking about it.

The more I think about it, the more I realise it was so obvious that it had to win.

912318be-c250-41b6-b8c4-82765e30ab87 (2).jpgEnough about London though. It's time for some Australian Gold. Sort of. We all saw the Croc Dundee Super Bowl ad. We all had the 'yeah nah it's an advert for Australia' conversation. We all want the Croc Dundee film to be made. It has an IMDB page, and now a well-deserved Lion for Droga5 New York.

Bookings to Australia went up 900% after it was broadcast. That's 900% more people coming over here. Pauline Hanson will be happy.

Pretty much every Australian celebrity worth their salt donated their time to be in it, and fair play to them. Hugh Jackman, Russell Crowe, Margot Robbie, Chris Hemsworth, and Paul bloody Hogan himself.

It's a different type of influence. It's the old world of celebrity influence, harnessing social, rather than influencers who built their own audience online.

It's emblematic of the times in which we live. We're in this transitory phase where celebrities have a voice through social media channels. We're in this moment where the two are merging. There's overlap, but I think the new influencer world is going to be far more prevalent.

Last on my list we're talking soccer. EA Sports/ FIFA's El Tornado blew us away. Unlike the meticulous coordination of the Nike campaign, this took on a life of its own. If you haven't seen it, it goes something like this:

Releasing the new FIFA 18 game last year, EA announced a new, physics-defying move for Cristiano Ronaldo, named El Tornado.  It really is a wtf move. Everyone wanted to learn it. There's millions of uploads, some better than others. Gaming influencers went mad for it.

Then EA did something clever. If players uploaded a video of themselves doing it in real life, their character would unlock it in the game. Cue millions of fans asking their heroes to learn and upload the move. Hundreds of players, with millions of aggregated followers, got on board.

8253361d-4765-4504-b8d5-4d3902b76b3a (2).jpgThese gaming environments are so powerful. Combine the reach of sports players and gaming influencers, and you have one seriously viral hit. They unleashed the beast.

I'd love to sit here and write about more of the winners, but I have a flight to catch. It's been an honour to sit on this jury. The category has proven itself a thousand times over. The bar has been set so high. Next year will be even better. 

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