Instead of boring you with a bunch of key takeaways from Cannes (because you've certainly already read those by now), we're going to explore just one: Authenticity.
Catch&Release has been helping cultivate authenticity between brands and consumers since day one (our inception back in 2014). A core theme at this year's Cannes Lions remains a constant: that brands are constantly trying to produce authentic messages that will resonate with consumers who increasingly want to be treated as stakeholders and partners.
Authentic content can provide customers with an engaging visual and emotional experience − what’s more real than content created by real people who most consumers can actually relate to? As in any relationship, trust is earned, and brands have the opportunity, now more than ever, to cultivate trust from the bottom up.
A session from Puma + Havas + Big Sean (yes, the rapper), focused on "Story Doing" (another buzzword to add to your list). According to Greg James, Global Chief Strategy Officer at Havas, "Story Doing is the act of a brand being authentic through actions vs words." At Catch&Release, we believe brands can take action by inviting consumers into the creative process; by using their real, lived experiences to help tell their larger brand story to the masses.
Big Sean nailed it when he said, “Don’t try to impact culture. You ARE culture.” Consumers real people ARE culture. Their photos and videos lived experiences ARE culture. On the flip side, brands have the power to impact culture by leveraging authentic content to tell culturally-relevant, emotionally-compelling visual stories.
Our Founder, Analisa Goodin, expressed a similar sentiment during her keynote at a Brand Innovators Roundtable event:
"Consumers expect to be in a constant state of dialogue with the brands they support, but are more aware than ever of what's real and what's fake. Advertisers should welcome this challenge (opportunity) to create visual brand experiences that captivate their audiences in a way that is genuine and real and raw − we continue to hear and read about, that that's what people want. Real and raw moves the needle, every time."
There’s nothing people find more compelling than a good story, which is why it’s so important for your brand to tell one. And with the amount of online content being created by your own consumers exploding, what better way to build brand trust than by using content made by real people to make your campaigns as dynamic and as real as they can be.
Cheers to Cannes 2019. We are already counting the days until next year!