- 'The Refugee Nation' for Amnesty International by Ogilvy New York: During the Olympics, this idea struck me hard. I’m not entirely sure whether the agency is responsible for creating the entire nation or just the flag, but in the spirit of celebrating stand out creativity, I actually don’t care. It’s so simple and incredibly powerful.
- 'World’s Biggest Asshole' for Donate Life by The Martin Agency: The best piece of storytelling I saw on the internet this year. Such a wonderful premise, so many little moments of wickedness to enjoy and a brilliant twist. If I’m being brutal I would say they didn’t need quite so much of the positivity at the end – I already had the message – but I get that would play well in markets that aren’t Australia. I really hope this does big things.
- 'My Mutant Brain' for Kenzo World by Framework: No overly complicated, cause related marketing here. Just Spike Jonze doing what he does best; pure, unadulterated entertainment. Thank you Spike Jonze.
- 'Conscious Crossing' for KiwiRail by Clemenger BBDO: I know mentioning our own work is bad form, but I need to give a plug to Clemenger Wellington’s Conscious Crossing. An unconventional solution to a problem that exists across the world.
Nick Worthington, creative chairman, Colenso BBDO
- 'Fearless Girl' for State Street Global Advisors by McCann New York: Done by an asset management company to highlight gender diversity. Not sure if they have Cannes Lions on their radar, but hopefully someone will enter this into the show this year. This little Bronze would pick up Gold for sure.
- 'Playnasium' for the YMCA by McCann Melbourne: The YMCA’s Playnasium is closer to home and appears to be a genuine big idea. Could be Gold.
- 'Meet Graham' for Australia's Transport Accident Commission by Clemenger BBDO Melbourne: I’d wager that Graham, the only human to be designed to withstand a car crash, will do well too. And so will Clemenger's Conscious Crossing for KiwiRail.
Adam Ferrier, founder, Thinkerbell
'You'll never lamb alone' for the MLA by The Monkeys: I love this. It's clever and inclusive and positive, and taps into a truth about lamb: lots of cultures have a close affinity with eating baby sheep, and a BBQ is a nice, welcoming, egalitarian gesture. It's also brave of a marketer to acknowledge that indigenous Australians were here first—and we're all on their land. Oh, and it's bloody funny.
'Meet Graham' for Australia's Transport Accident Commission by Clemenger BBDO Melbourne: What amazes me by this work is not the idea—similar ideas have been done before in this market—but the amazing execution. It's both brave and beautiful. Further, the scale of the execution and how Graham has been delivered into the world has got loads of earned media and I assume people talking. Graham gets attention and acts as a media channel to tell a lot of different road-safety stories. I only hope the agency sticks by Graham and doesn't treat him as roadkill after he cleans up at Cannes.
- 'Hungerythm' for Snickers by Clemenger BBDO: I love this in so many ways. Great expression of the brand, wonderful use of technology, takes the piss out of the latest trend in advertising, and is just quirky fun. I'm not sure what real impact it had, or how many people really engaged with it—I just love the thinking behind this idea. Passes the 'makes me jealous' test.
David Ponce de Leon, ECD, Ogilvy Melbourne
- 'Meet Graham' for Australia's Transport Accident Commission by Clemenger BBDO Melbourne: I might not be the first to say this but I have a feeling the name on everyone's lips in the south of France this year won't be Helen or Martin or Lang Lang, as musical as that sounds. It will be Graham. The person designed to survive a speed crash on Australian Roads. The genius of this campaign is how it redefined the conversation about speeding into something completely different. The best demonstration that 'doing' not 'saying' gets ahead in this day and age.
- 'Beer Bottle Sand' for DB Breweries by Colenso BBDO, New Zealand: Following on the success of 'Brewtroleum', here comes another innovative campaign from the BBDOs across the ditch, designed to encourage the recycling of glass beer bottles. This time, turning empty beer bottles into sand and attempting to reduce excavation on NZ beaches for construction materials. Somehow, the environmentally friendly angle suits a kiwi beer to a tee and DB are right onto something here. 100% Pure NZ, right? Again, an idea that transcends advertising and keeps you wondering what they'll do next. Maybe they should bring one of those machines to Cannes. They will be plenty of bottles to recycle and their beaches are notoriously rocky.
- 'Made Possible by Melbourne' for The University of Melbourne by McCann Melbourne: My third choice didn't come as easily as the first two. Nevertheless, I believe it is a worthy one. Turning transit sites into an outdoor exhibition showcasing the world-changing research taking place at the university. From robotics to agriculture, from medicine to architecture. Innovation in outdoor such as this is really hard to find and even harder to pull off. But they did. Turning the old sandstone institution into something somewhat cool. Who would have thought that possible?
Rob Martin Murphy, ECD, Ikon
- 'Meet Graham' for Australia's Transport Accident Commission by Clemenger BBDO Melbourne: What hasn’t been said about this idea already? It’s infuriatingly great. Back up the truck (carefully), because it will be the most awarded campaign at the festival.
- 'Silicon Valley URXXL' for Sky by DDB NZ: A TV show promo that uses radio and a ridiculously long (and amusing) URL to drive people online to win. One watch of the case study and you’ll be giving it a Lion too.
- 'Do you care enough to be a cop?' for NZ Police by Ogilvy Auckland: Simple. Powerful. PR-able. Made the news, made people sign up in record numbers, deserves all the metallic success it gets.
Simon Langley, ECD Sydney and ANZ creative lead, J. Walter Thompson
‘Through the dark’ for Google by R/GA Sydney: It’s not often you see technology so seamlessly baked into the heart of an idea as with this harrowing story from The Hilltop Hoods. Beautiful animation, beautiful storytelling and an awesome track make this a real contender at Cannes this year in multiple categories.
‘Inside Out’ for Anchor Milk by Colenso BBDO: In a world of rolling hills and mooing cows, it’s great to see an original approach to advertising the benefits of milk. The craft in this piece is amazing, so it’s sure to get the attention of Cannes judges, especially in the craft categories.
- ‘HUNGERithm’ for Snickers by Clemenger BBDO Melbourne: This is one of those ideas you tip your hat to all involved. It’s not only a great idea that takes the ‘You’re not you when you’re hungry’ creative platform into a completely new space, but they actually found a way to get this challenging idea made, rather than placed into the ‘too hard’ basket. An idea about angry, is about to make a lot of people very happy.