Guilt Trip


In today’s globalized world, could ad campaigns be a key driver to our change in sustainability? The last Cannes Lions seems to rough out an answer to this recurrent question. Let’s have a look at 4 campaigns 2014 Grand Prix winners that promote human change for a better and sustainable world.

Being trendy. We all follow trends and fashion because of our entourage: the society. Even marginal people like hipsters who claim to be against mainstream fashion are actually similar to other people claiming to be THE most original and different. And who did not notice that all football players at the 2014 world cup have the same haircut, although they are all living in different continents? Paradox. Everybody wants to be both unique and similar to someone, simply because one desires to share one’s experiences. Being perceived as… Our perception of things and habits are quite influenced by what we see and what others see from us. As Rumi (Mevlana) said “Appear as you are. Be as you appear.” With this quote in mind, here are my insights about the following 2014 Grand Prix winners.

Cultivate change
This year, CAA Marketing and Chipotle won the Grand Prix Cyber and PR for their The Scarecrow campaign.  Already rewarded in 2012 with two Grand Prix for Back to the Start and Cultivate a Better World, Chipotle goes on succeeding with campaigns that raise public awareness in cultivating good change. Not only The Scarecrow is a short film promoting better food production respecting the environment and animal welfare, it is also a smartphone game educating players in better food consuming.

Source: The Scarecrow game on IPhone

Source: The Scarecrow game on IPhone

Dare to change!
When one says “I’m working in a bank”, the words boring, strict, conformism come to mind at first. Well, ANZ seems to be a bank that makes us think of words like fun, colorful, cheerful and audacious. With GAYTMs campaign, Whybin/TBWA Melbourne and ANZ bank won the Grand Prix Outdoor. ANZ ATMs were branded with the Gay Pride colors, and at each withdrawal, a rainbow receipt with a tolerance message was coming out. Besides, all transaction fees were donated to LGBT associations. Although this is still a quite delicate subject in Turkey, the 11th Gay Pride of Istanbul took place last Sunday (29 June). The participation went from 5.000 in 2011 to 50.000 in 2013! Even thousands gathered on 29 June. A sign of open-mindedness?

Travel for a change!
Tired of your daily life? Need to recharge yourself? What better than a small trip far from all problems and treat yourself at… Parents’ home? Parents are now tracking their beloved children’s activities through social media like Facebook! Not visiting them because you are on a trip in Italy with your friends, cannot be hidden from them anymore. Even if you pretend you are not a big user of social media – which could be either a white lie or a Facebook challenge? – your parents are not that naïve. Don’t forget that they made you! McCann Australia and V/Line understood it very well and were rewarded with the Grand Prix Creative Effectiveness for their Guilt Trips campaign. V/Line succeeded in increasing the tickets sales by 15% representing over 160.000 extra trips home from people (children) who left their country town (parents) in Australia.


Change for recycled fabric!
FHV BBDO Amsterdam and G-Star Raw won the Grand Prix Product Design, a new category in 2014 Cannes Lions, with their Raw for the oceans campaign. The brand fights pollution by recycling plastic collected from the oceans to make clothes. Pharrell Williams, co-creator of the campaign, highlights very well something we should think of on our way to holidays: “We vacation by the oceans, we bathe in the oceans, we eat from the oceans…”


Being pushed to change for a more sustainable world may be a social construct that makes us appear to be for sustainability, and be for sustainability as we appear.