Simon Gwynn
May 4, 2018

Google named Cannes Lions Creative Marketer of the Year

The tech giant will be recognised for embracing creativity across its brand marketing, the application of new technology to creating campaigns and inclusive storytelling.

Google's DeepMind AlphaGo project won the Innovation Grand Prix in 2016.
Google's DeepMind AlphaGo project won the Innovation Grand Prix in 2016.

Cannes Lions has named Google as its Creative Marketer of the Year for 2018.

The award honours brands that "distinguish themselves through consistently outstanding creative storytelling" with Google recognised for embracing creativity across its brand marketing, the application of new technology to creating campaigns, and inclusive storytelling.

The award will be collected by Google chief marketing officer Lorraine Twohill during Cannes Lions' International Festival of Creativity's closing award ceremony on Friday 22 June.

Google follows last year’s winner Burger King. The two brands experienced an unfortunate crossover last April, after Burger King had been named as the recipient of the award, when the fast food chain used a TV ad to trigger the Google Home voice assistant, with undesired results.

Other previous winners include Coca-Cola and Samsung.

Jose Papa, managing director at Cannes Lions, said: "Alongside its obvious achievements as a technology company, Google as a brand has crafted a reputation for marketing campaigns that are bold, courageous and creative.

"Over the history of the Festival, Google has taken home an incredible 127 Lions. Ground-breaking campaigns like NYT VR, Google Deepmind Alphago, Google Cardboard, Google Voice Search and Hilltop Reimagined for Coca-Cola – all of which won Grands Prix – are clear examples of Google’s drive to constantly challenge and strive for creative excellence."

Diversity initiative

Google will also use Cannes to launch the Google Creative Campus, which will focus on driving greater gender, ethnicity and socio-demographic diversity in the creative industries.

It will run a programme in Cannes educating 45 students, at least half of which will come from groups historically underrepresented in advertising and marketing. Students will be selected by Cannes Lions representatives, with 10 receiving bursaries from Google.

Following a week of training in Cannes, the group will take part in another week-long immersion trip at Google’s headquarters in California, in the second half of the year.

Twohill said: "At Google we build for everyone, and our marketing campaigns must speak to people all around the world with different backgrounds, languages, and points of view.

"We want to support more talented newcomers who bring different perspectives into the industry. This isn’t about ‘multicultural marketing’; it’s marketing in a multicultural world. Without this diversity, there is no creativity."

Campaign UK

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