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Media Grand Prix goes to Leo Burnett

Contributed by: Rusmir Arnautovic
Date: Tuesday 29, June 2010
Media Grand Prix goes to Leo Burnett

Leo Burnett in Sydney took home the Media Grand Prix here at Cannes tonight for its "EOS Photochains" work for Canon Australia. The jury praised the campaign for its savvy use of paid media to lead people to an engaging online experience that tapped into the power of social media. Most important of all, Leo Burnett Sydney created a compelling idea, said jury chair Laura Desmond, CEO of Starcom MediaVest Group.

The victory marks the second year in a row that a creative agency has won the top Media award. Desmond said the jury ignored what kind of agencies entered the competition, focusing instead on three criteria: insights into simple truths; immersive experiences; and strong results for brand building. The Canon insight that won the jury over was that "people who take photographs aren't interested in technology but in inspiration." EOS Photochains sought to drive this home by creating an application that lets users tag parts of their photos, which then act as inspiration for new photos from others. "The photos themselves became the medium," Desmond said. "It's the heart of what social media should be."

In all, the jury awarded eight gold Lions, 11 silvers and 28 bronzes. Other close contenders for the top prize, Desmond said, were: "It's No Picnic" by George Patterson Y&R for Cadbury; "Go Beyond Borders" by Heimat Berlin for CNN International; and "Auditorium" by JWT Italia for Heineken Italia.

The Canon work is another example of how the lines have blurred among categories. Just as Gatorade's "Replay" campaign, which earned TBWA\Chiat\Day two Grand Prix, in PR and Promo, is an integrated campaign that's tough to pin on one discipline, "EOS Photochains" depended on a variety of tactics—with paid media only playing a supporting role, at least according to the case-study video. Indeed, "Replay" also took home a gold Lion in Media to go with its two Grand Prix.
Desmond said the jury wasn't hung up on parsing paid media from earned and owned. Instead, like every jury here, this one claimed to only be in search of a "great idea," in the words of juror Matt Seiler, worldwide CEO of Universal McCann. And that inevitably brings up the question: If great ideas are the driver of all campaigns, what is the role of the media agency? "It shows media can be an enabler or facilitator of experiences, not just a distributor," Desmond says.
U.S. entrants had a rough time. Only Grey New York took home a gold, for its "Beyond the Still" work for Canon. Wieden + Kennedy ("Chalkbot" for Nike Livestrong) and AKQA Washington ("Real Racing GTI" for Volkswagen) won silvers.
Goodby, Silverstein & Partners ("Concert in a Bag," Doritos), Y&R New York ("Y'all vs Us," Cellular South), Fallon ("Follow the White Rabbit," Syfy Channel) and BBDO New York ("Love Project," Starbucks) won bronze. The winners are a sign of things to come, Desmond said: "We started to see work that represented the future rather than the past."

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