The Cannes Debrief
17 July 2020

View our Cannes Lions Live Debrief here

The effect of COVID-19 on the media and advertising industry has been felt in several ways.

We are all experiencing a shift in how we work, how we prioritise spend, and importantly how we reach consumers. Across the world, we have seen different phases of lockdown and different approaches to how brands are reacting to the crisis, but with one common thread; listening with empathy to consumers’ needs, and finding new ways to reach them, in the ways in which they want to be reached.

A small slice of normality was felt when Cannes Lions announced it would be taking its renowned festival online. For five hours a day during the week that would have seen the Croisette filled with industry folk waxing lyrical about the world-class content, we could turn all the lights on in our new home offices, pour a rosé and lose ourselves pretending we were on the French Riviera.


We have pulled out three themes we feel are prudent to focus on as we look to H2 2020 and beyond.

The content for Lions Live was understandably not as comprehensive as previous years in the Palais des Festivals, but took the familiar shape of keynotes, Q&As, shorts, presidents’ briefings and more. The sessions naturally addressed a lot of topics currently front of mind; the effects of COVID-19, the more than ever importance of a robust and actionable D&I strategy, and the importance of putting creativity and innovation at the heart of all that we do.

We have pulled out three themes we feel are prudent to focus on, as we look to H2 2020 and beyond, and highlighted the sessions we think you must watch, along with further recommendations (all clickable from this PDF). We also share our point-of-view on the theme; offering you solutions, tangible advice, and ways in which we can offer added value.

Now, more than ever, our promise of ‘Better decisions, faster’ seems to resonate not just with us at OMD, but across the industry too, as we are looking for fast action, better results and a pivot to new communication channels, to continue to reach our audiences in the right way, at the right time.

You can still access the full schedule of content via Lions Live, but for now, we hope you enjoy our view on what we perceive to be the key themes and talking points of this year’s abridged virtual festival.

Click here to view the full document online.


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