By Mark Davison
I just can’t wait to be king.
I was trying to think of a title for this SCAB based on a lion king song. Now I’m wondering what that choice says about me. Oh well, on with the SCAB.
This is about Cannes Future Lions. With the deadline only a few days away now, I thought I’d try and condense a few thoughts and experiences I’ve had and share them with the year.
When we started working on Future Lions, Marc was all about the mess. Find mess he said, find it, define it, and solve it with technology. Bang bash wallop, that’s Future Lions in the bag, trips to Cannes booked. The only thing left would be to decide what Rosé you liked best.
But unfortunately, and as with anything at SCA, it hasn’t ended up quite that simple.
I started with a bunch of messes. Some of them were rubbish, but a few of them a quite liked. And even better, some of them I could solve with technology. But were they big enough? That was my first question. Most of them were so specific or niche that connecting them with a brand became difficult.
Then, being the incredibly privileged people that we are at SCA, Mr Ian Wharton (by my reckoning the most stacked creative director in advertising) himself came in to speak to us about Future Lions. His advice was this:
A good Future Lions entry takes a really great insight about an audience, with a brand new use of technology, and connects it with a specific brand that couldn’t be any other.
Oh dear, where was the mess finding in that? I’m not sure any of my problem, solution, was going to work here. Back to the drawing board.
So back I went. A few days past, and a bunch more ideas were scamped out. I sorted through them, and started taking my favourites to our lovely mentors for feedback.
Unfortunately, feedback wasn’t great. Though surprised and intrigued by some of the ideas I presented (notable feedback included, “What the hell did you type into Google to find this?”) none of the ideas presented seemed to be really nailing the Future Lions brief.
Time for a new approach maybe? Andy, my personal North Star in all things regarding Future Lions suggested I try this:
“Try, rather than thinking about problems or focusing on generic tech, to instead pick a piece of tech from something that excites you, something that interests you. Pick a hobby, passion, interest, etc. and find out more about the tech that is breaking through there.”
Good advice as always, cheers Andy. I hope that some of the other Penguins get a chance to read this, and that it helps them as well. Good luck everyone with your case study videos, lets break some SCA records.