Focus 1 day, focus everyday?

International days are set to raise awareness about a subject matter. One of the most famous international day is probably the International Women’s Day, but many others exist such as International Day of Forests (21 March), World Water Day (22 March), World Environment Day (5 June), World Day Against Child Labor (12 June) etc. Using them in campaigns are a great opportunity for brands to be talked about. But are they working?

When I started my search about special international days on the Web, I was quite surprised by my findings! There are plenty of lists available: the one from the United Nations, another one from UNESCO, a list from Wikipedia etc. Then, as I was reading what kind of international days were listed I noted that some were more famous – or more used in campaigns and presented in media – than others. For example, the International Women’s Day is unavoidable. Being a brand and not communicate on the 8th of March has become a nonsense. But are these campaigns efficient? Well… I’m afraid that some stereotypes and clichés are still quite strong.

Some changes…
Messages about inequality between men and women at work are triggering initiatives and trends such as creating women network or awareness trainings within organizations. In terms of campaigns, some interesting initiatives can be observed. Here is an example: “Own Business Girl”.

Metro Germany launched a campaign to support Women Entrepreneurship: for each newborn girl born on 8th March 2018 in Dusseldorf, a 2000 EUR fixed-term deposit was given. Why such endeavour? Based on a study, a Germany-based Metro’s International Own Business Study, 45% of women want to start their own business, but just 12% think they ever will. The main reason stopping them? Lack of financial support.


Source: Sense NYC

Ad agencies have also grab the opportunity to communicate about either their support or their actions related to this famous day.
Unfortunately, this type of campaign is having an impact only for a short period of time. Once the famous international day has passed, all is gone and forgotten. Even if the #Adpology was to be praised, stereotypes in ads are still used.

…haven’t overcome old-fashioned brands yet
The worse ads are probably the ones full of stereotypes and targeting the young ones. Saying that, I was quite disappointed by the last Disneyland Paris campaign in Parisian metro stations to promote their “Festival Pirates and Princesses”.

After a visit on Disneyland Paris’ website, I figured out that the following choice is given: whether you join Cinderella, Moana, Snow White or other princesses or you join the Captain Hook, Jake, Peter Pan, Wendy and other pirates. Even if Wendy is part of the Pirates group, the poster used to promote the event is quite falling into old-fashioned stereotypes. Maybe, it is a Work In Progress presentation, since there is on the frontpage “pirates” written with 3 “r” letters?


Other changes to come?
Last year, Unilever announced a partnership with UN Women and other companies to launch Unstereotype Alliance. The purpose? Accelerate progress around how women and men are portrayed in ads and brand-led content. According to a quote of Phumzile Mlambo-Ngcuka, Executive Director of UN Women and Under- Secretary-General of the United Nations in The Drum: “Advertising is a particularly powerful driver to change perceptions and impact social norms”. Maybe soon, erasing gender biases in ads will become THE norm and not a differentiator for brands?

Toward a new ad landscape to come?

New comers are shaking the Ad World, leading to questions related to how to sustain on the market. Add client pressure and budget issues, the ingredients to put ad agencies in a challenging environment are all gathered.  With Publicis Groupe forbidding all of its agencies from participating in awards shows in 2018 last June, the coming months appear to draw a quite new landscape in the Ad World. In services, innovation, creativity and production are coming from talents. Are they the key to sustain? How to attract and keep talents? Social relations and working conditions may be a leverage.


Source: AdAge

IBM, Accenture, PwC and Deloitte may become the Big 4 of marketing services?

Ad world is drastically changing. In AdAge, E.J. Schultz highlighted that this year, “for the first time ever, four consultancies have cracked Ad Age’s ranking of the 10 largest agency companies in the world”. More recently, Gideon Spanier wrote in his Campaign UK column that “Publicis Groupe and WPP are takeover targets because agency groups are under pressure and Accenture looks the most credible buyer, according to a leading French bank.” What to expect? Well, we shall see in the coming months…


Source: attentia

Promote wellness to attract talents

In such context, focus may be on talents. How to keep and attract them? A common question for many companies, which applies to the Ad World as well. Salaries may be a leverage, but let’s face it, this means belongs to the “old weapons”. Challenges, responsibilities and opportunities to evolve are of course key factors, but to differentiate an agency to another other things need to be used. Today, to attract talents the trend goes to wellness and social aspects promotion: gym available at the premises, possibilities to work with flexibility, home office, creation of Chief Happiness Officer etc. Pecuniary aspects have still their importance, but let’s not forget that millenials and xenials are the wanted profiles and favor pleasant working environment.

Change the Ad World

In the 60’s working for an agency was synonym to success. According to Universum Global, the TOP 5 dream companies for business students around the world are Google, Goldman Sachs, Apple, EY and PwC. The survey also revealed that work-life balance is the number-one career goal in 10 of the 12 countries surveyed. Details related to work environment is now part of many job descriptions. Also, because of companies like Google have revolutionized work environment other companies such as EY or PwC have adapt their ways of working, inspired by start-ups. Forget the strict atmosphere, let’s place to new premises thought and designed for its employees. The lay out can even compete with creative agencies! In France, BETC has taken the change with premises built to host its +900 employees.

As demonstrated by Darwin, the best adapted to their environments are more likely to sustain. What shall we expect for the future of Ad World?

Big winners of Cannes Lions 2017 Grand Prix: Environmental and Social Initiatives!

Since 2013 I’m writing about sustainability and Cannes Lions 🦁, and I’m getting happier and happier 🤗 when I see more environmental and social initiatives promoted through campaigns. Because it means that things are being done! Unless the advertising world just wants to appear to care… Let’s continue to believe in unicorns 🦄 and believe that the world is actually changing. For this year, here are my Top 7 Cannes Lions Grand Prix  selection! Why 7? Because July (7) has come… along with Game of Thrones’ 7th season!

The true cost of your consumption
The Aland Index is a kind of ‘behind the scenes’ of your consumption. It calculates the environmental impact (carbon footprint) of each credit card transaction. Every month, a digital report 📊 is presented along with the monthly bill and suggests local, global or lifestyle call to actions to compensate for the impact caused. Combined with an index that would measure social impact (The True Cost), people consumption might change…? While change is in progress, communication of such initiative has been quite effective since the campaign made by RBK Communication Stockholm for the Bank of Aland 🇫🇮 was one of the winners of the Grand Prix Cyber.

4 for Fearless girl
Fearless Girl not only obtained the 3rd Grand Prix Glass, it has also been awarded with Grand Prix Titanium, PR and Outdoor! Sculpted by Kristen Visbal and commissioned by State Street Global Advisors (SSGA) via McCann New York, Fearless Girl depicts a Latina girl looking at the famous Charging Bull 🐃 at Bowling Green in the Financial District of Manhattan, New York City 🗽. Installed a day before the International Women’s Day, McCann New York found the perfect setup to advertise SSGA Gender Diversity Index, which, itself, promotes gender diversity across senior leadership within U.S. large-capitalization companies. More and more companies are launching women leaders program. We shall see in the future if such initiatives make known the power of women in leadership.

The unusual aspect
If I say “sport”, “Thailand”, you may think of Muay Thai. If I add “strong supporters”, you might guess… “Soccer ⚽?” In Thailand 🇹🇭, people are quite passionate about it: they like to watch it and play at it. In Khlong Toei community, a highly populated area in Bangkok, building relationships with one another, especially within the young ones, is one of many of their challenges. Sport is always a good way to connect people together. AP THAILAND, a real estate 🏘developer , in collaboration with CJ WORX, a digital agency firm in Thailand came up with the idea of redesigning soccer field through space optimization, and thus illustrating perfectly AP Thailand’s motto: “Space can change one’s life.” For this initiative, The Unusual Football Field Project obtained the Grand Prix Design.

Orange is the new nation
Remember the Refugee Olympic Team at the last Summer Olympics? Although they have not been awarded any medals 🏅, the campaign The Refugee Nation made by the agency Ogilvy NY for Amnesty International was awarded the Grand Prix for Good.

Staying in the Olympics theme, the campaign We are the Superhumans, for Channel 4 by Blink Productions & 4Creative got the Grand Prix Film. The main purpose of the campaign was to change people’s perception and attitude towards disabled people since “67% of British people feel uncomfortable talking to a disabled person”. With a cast of more than 140 people, including both non-athletes and Paralympic stars 🏊, the campaign was a real success “76% of Brits felt the campaign opened their eyes to what disabled people are capable of.”

The power of installation
The Grand Prix Creative Effectiveness was awarded to the campaign Van Gogh’s bedroom for Airbnb created by the agency Leo Burnett Chicago. When I watched the campaign video it reminds me of IKEA and the Red Cross’ temporary showroom of a Syrian house. The 25m² installation aimed to raise awareness about how people live, survive, and how to help.

When pay phones are upcycled into banks
In 2014, GSMA’s real-time tracker put the number of mobile devices 📱at 7.22 billion (!!) in the world. On Earth 🌍 we are now 7.5 billion people. Mobile phone has definitely become a “basic” accessory. Have you ever wondered how we did in the past, back to the old days? If you were outside and needed to have a call, you had to use payphones 📞. Obviously, there is less usage of such devices nowadays. In Colombia 🇨🇴, Tigo-Une, a Telecom firm came up with the idea of turning 13,000 payphones into micro savings systems. An unexpected upcycling idea! People can activate an account at a Une store, then deposit their earnings, which are mostly coins, into the public phone and their own microsavings account. The campaign PAYPHONE BANK made by Grey Colombia got the Grand Prix Product Design.

I hope you enjoyed the reading 😉 and it helped you to wait until GoT’s new season, especially if like me, you gave up on waiting for the 6th book of A Song of Ice and Fire 😔.

Eco-friendly brands discovered in Lisbon!


Some pictures I took during the trip 🙂

On a long weekend in Lisbon this month, I had the opportunity to discover eco-friendly brands: good news for me, bad news for my wardrobe.

My purpose on this trip: #1eat well (always a top priority), #2 relax, #3 enjoy and have fun, #4 shop for Summer shoes, since Portugal is famous for it and #5 be in a new environment to get some change.
To fulfill #1, #2 and #3 in Lisbon, you just need to hang around: people are nice, ready to tell you what is behind a dish, food is good and quite cheap. There are pastel de nata (custard cake), pastel de bacalahau (codfish and cheese cake) and all sorts of puff pastries in almost every shop, fresh fruit juice and many places to visit.


Pastel de nata

Although it was full of French tourists, I managed to get the change I was looking for, as Lisbon is very colorful, sunny (!! Something rare these days in Paris) and reminded me of Istanbul and Andalusia (#5 ✅). Besides, Sintra is definitely a must-seen place (sport shoes required)!


My Proof sunglasses, Click-Clock alarm, Rutz shoes!

To fulfill #4, I checked many different shops (hipsters’ shops included) but succeeded in finding what I was searching for in LX Factory! An atmosphere similar to Williamsburg, New York, (↔ hipster yes) and full with nice restaurants and very nice shops! There, I found my Rutz shoes, made of cork, an eco-friendly material. The founders of this Portuguese brand aimed to combine the two major industries Portugal is famous for: footwear and cork (Portugal is the world-leading producer). I also found my Proof sunglasses! Yes, it was not on my travel list… but they are so nice I could not resist! Proof is an American brand which was founded in 2010 by the Dame brothers. The eyewears they make are all made of eco-friendly materials. For example, the sunglasses I bought are made of Cotton-based acetate & sustainably sourced wood, and -5-barrel hinges. Other brands followed this trend such as Kerbholz (2011) and Rezin (2016).
I was about to pay my new shades when I saw an alarm clock made of wood close to the cashier! Click-Clock by Gingko is an alarm clock made of walnut wood with digital display of the time, date and temperature. The display turns off after 20 seconds and turns on if you clap your hands or touch it. And yes I took it 🙂


Other pics I took 🙂


It has already been 4 years since the collapse of the Rana Plaza in Bangladesh! What are the after-effects on our way of consuming fast-fashion?

Looking fashion = looking good?
Created after the catastrophe, the movement Fashion Revolution has made many operations to raise people awareness about the consequences of fast-fashion industry . Change our way of consuming fashion is challenging: buying things has become easier and faster with online shopping, the rise of more and more YouTubers telling you what are the “must-have” in clothing, bags, make-up leads you to extend your wish list, collections are continuously increasing (more than 20a year for Zara and up to 16 for H&M according to The Economist) and the crave for having posts/pictures/videos liked is going stronger.

Sustainability, as a driver for fashion
In The state of fashion, the first joint report from McKinsey and the Business of Fashion, we learn that “2016 can be summarized in three words: uncertain, changing, and challenging” by fashion executives around the world. Among the fashion industry trends of 2016, the report highlights that “[…] Consumers and brands have prioritized sustainable fashion, which is transforming product design and manufacturing”, with “more than 65% of emerging market consumers [who] actively seek sustainable fashion versus 32% or less in mature markets”. What to expect for 2017? According the report, “the shrewder shopper will be characterized by 6 main qualities: better informed, always “on”, more demanding, more conscious, more volatile, connected to others.”


Source: The State of Fashion 2017 – page 70

Aware of such trend, many new ethical brands have spread over the market. Besides the brands I usually quote (TOMS, Veja, Faguo, Ekyog, Hamilton Perkins, WWoW etc.), there are also Reformation (2009), Matt & Nat (1995), Birdsong (2014), Le Bijou Parisien (2015), and online boutiques such as Rêve En Vert and Gather & See, which are collecting all ethical brands in one place.


Source: Birdsong

What about consumption?
Labels or certifications such as B-Corp or Fair Wear Foundation may increase as much as “shrewder consumers” increase. Fair Wear Foundation is an independent, non-profit organization, who “works with brands and industry influencers to improve working conditions where your clothing is made” through verification and keeping track of improvements made. However, the best solution seems to be buying smarter, by buying less and sustainable and or recycled items…

The new mall model
According to Global Footprint Network, in 2013, our planet only had enough resources for each of us to consume 1,72 “global hectares” (gha) per year – a standardized unit that measures resource use and waste. 1,39 corresponds roughly to what the average person in Africa consumes. By contrast, in other regions of the planet, people consume about 2,31 gha per person in Asia, 4,32 gha per person in Europe, 8,6 gha per person in North America, many times their fair share. Time to change you think? In Sweden, the first shopping mall ReTuna Återbruksgalleria selling recycled or upcycled products, objects, furniture and garments has opened in 2015, thanks to a partnership with the municipality. A great compromise between making business and better consumerism. We may find recycled Ikea bags for sale!


Source: Progrss


Source: Independent

Teaching the young ones by doing
Better consumption, eating organic, ethical values are spread more and more through films (like the last Disney, Moana) and ads to teach the young ones how to better consume. The recent Carrefour campaigns are answering children’s questions about consumption by raising their awareness about sustainability issues: “why we should not give antibiotics to chicken?”, “why we should not give GMOs to animals?”, “why local products are better?”.

La Qualité Alimentaire, ça change quoi ? Carrefour, meilleur chaque jour (pub TV 2017)

Books are also a good way to convey messages and values. Be the Change Books are a series of children’s books about environmental issues, each with a funny story and clear pointers to what we can all do, or here the story of Petite Plume about solidarity. Other means: toys! Sonia Singh, a Tasmanian artist improves discarded dolls by repairing them and giving them a “new down-to-earth style”, at such a point that little children prefer to play with the upcycled Tree Change Dolls rather than the original ones. Wendy Tsao went further by changing the dolls into heroes like Jane Goodall, Malala Yousafzai, J.K. Rowling, Roberta Bondar or Waris Dirie.

Tree Change Dolls I The Feed

Convinced to be ethical-fashion addict?