The trends seen at Cannes 2016, and predictions on who’ll be winning big this year

Daljit Singh

It’s Nice That:

Daljit Singh knows a thing or two about Cannes: he’s a two-time awards winner there, and has been on the judging panel for the past few years. He’s also Fjord’s regional design strategy lead. When he’s not busy doing all of these things he’s kindly penned us a piece on his reflections from judging Cannes 2016, looking at the trends that have emerged and who he reckons will win big. Following this, Tristan Macherel, executive creative director of global branding agency, Landor Paris, and President of the design jury at Cannes Lions, talks about what he’s looking forward to at this year’s festival.

Daljt Singh

Over the past twenty years I’ve vested many hours in dark rooms around the world, sifting through award submissions… and Cannes Lions is no exception. Outstanding work leaps out, arouses and unites the slumped figures that are flatlining over the monotony of mediocrity.

But the past couple of years judging has become a little more complex and interesting. When you see something brilliant like last year’s Grand Prix winner at Cannes what3words, you begin to realise how categories are becoming irrelevant. Here is an idea that marries the reality of invention with a real impact on society.

It is little wonder that the smart marketing money has shifted further into the realms of design and innovation. Innovation, invention and technology are no longer the “new kid” categories but becoming the cornerstones of awards. I think what we will – or should – see more of, will be the softer, human use of technology moulding itself seamlessly into the fabric of the idea and subsequently, our lives.

Talking of fabric I’m sure we’ll see the recently rebranded and repositioned Unmade acknowledged at Cannes. This on-demand knitwear service enables customers to create unique knitwear from scarves to sweaters for a similar cost to a high street product. It is underpinned with an ethical backbone that is ever more important.

Seymour Powell’s Fairphone 2 is another darling of the awards industry that you may be familiar with. Not only is it intelligently designed, but the product becomes the brand and marketing, making its owners advocates of a new way of making electronics that are not wasteful.

Slow Down GPS by F&B in Sweden is a genius idea that changes the voiceover of the in-car navigation system to a child’s as the motorist approaches a school. Although it may smack of a horror film or two, it could avert a far worse horror on the roads.

It is evident through these projects that creative and tech teams are working much closer to push innovation into invention and onto a commercial reality. This is marketing now and for the future.

Cannes predictions

We should see the brilliant McWhopper campaign win big this year with its wonderful burger mash-up proposal. It smartly provokes and cajoles to make the audience actively want to get involved in the charity Peace One Day. The humour and execution is pure nectar to social media. In the same vein Van Gogh BnB could be another contender for sheer fun factor. There is no letting up on experiential though – delivering the old friend surprise-and-delight is paramount in plunging the audience into the sublime.

Award winning work has to really perform to get recognition, which is why I hope to see the C4 idents win at this year’s Cannes festival. In our tech-fuelled world they still manage to relax and perplex in a beautiful way. It could be said that they capture the channel perfectly.

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Daljit Singh

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