Cannes

the prior year because the online series did not neatly fit into any of the existing competitions at the time, the award was introduced by then-jury president Dan Wieden of Wieden + Kennedy as a way to honor an industry-changing, groundbreaking idea.

According to the Titanium jurors, the primary idea in this case was forming a new media channel from an existing property. Although the barcode design could have been introduced 15 years ago, said Lubars, the winning Japanese shop found a way to take something that was “depressing, brain-fogging and 1984-ish” and turn it into something “fun and friendly.” He added, “This is a new way to communicate to your customer.”

An added argument for the Titanium Grand Prix was ownership, the Holy Grail for agencies tired of selling away their concepts by the billable hour. Design Barcode has trademarked the idea and licenses its work to clients.

“We talk about owning content—here is [something] that is propriety,” said juror Craig Davis of JWT. “I think people feel fantastic and inspired by that. If they understand that ideas can have a much higher value, they’ll get it.”

“It opened up my whole perspective,” added juror Scott Goodson of StrawberryFrog. “They took something that was really quite ugly and turned it into an aesthetically beautiful communications channel. It had me thinking about the boring plastic tags on clothes.”

As is becoming customary here, the Titanium was a source of griping and confusion among the more than 10,000 attendees before it was even awarded. Some questioned whether bestowing a separate honor for “the big idea” dilutes the significance of the other categories, considering the adage that all good advertising is based on a big idea.

Davis refuted the complaint, saying the Titanium “is not a best of show; it doesn’t devalue those other things at all. This is something else. It would be a mistake to line up all the Grand Prix awards and ask, ‘What’s the best idea here?’ It’s about finding something of a higher order.”

The Titanium jury also acknowledged two other entries at the awards ceremony Saturday night, Droga5’s “Still Free” for Marc Ecko and Tribal DDB London’s “Monopoly Live” for Hasbro. But Lubars and the jurors said though they were strong ideas, they did not represent an “original and game-changing idea.” And he added that the work was also acknowledged in other Cannes awards shows earlier in the week.

Controversies also touched the week’s first and newest category, Sales Promotion. CP+B—still the industry’s most admired—took the award for its Volkswagen “Fast” campaign, which offered a new take on Web-based customization with an injection of humor and an interactive “test drive” with a character from the campaign’s TV spots.

Jury president Lor Gold of Draft Chicago conceded that “fast” challenged the standard notion of sales promotion—a practice more associated with coupons and two-for-one deals. But he defended the selection by pointing to its use of a demon-like icon named “Fast” that represented a young driver’s repressed desire for speed. “‘Fast’ was about branding the consumer, not the car,” the concept that informs all good sales promotion, said Gold.

Universal McCann nabbed a Media Grand Prix for its wide-ranging campaign for risqué body spray Lynx, marketed in the U.S. as Axe. The Sydney agency won for its airline-themed integrated campaign across TV, radio, print and the Web that tied together the brand promise of finding young men success with women and the coming-of-age passage of traveling abroad. In addition to traditional media, Universal McCann created “mostesses” for the airline.

Renetta McCann of StarcomMediaVest said the simple but powerful insight, combined with the localized aspect, made the campaign a clear choice. Jury members were disappointed that more entries did not involve a diverse array of digital channels. “I don’t think we saw as much interactive as we wanted to,” she said.

In the Cyber category, viral video ruled the day. CP+B cemented its reputation as masters of media-agnostic advertising, following up its Promo Grand Prix with another and three gold Lions for its Volkswagen and Burger King work. The Cyber jury gave CP+B top honors for interactive campaign, awarding its Volkswagen GTI work that featured several viral videos and a Web site.

In Outdoor, Fallon London scored a Grand Prix for Tate Britain. A dozen other agencies received gold Lions, including awards to Saatchi & Saatchi offices in Petaling Jaya, Malaysia, New York, Buenos Aires and Sydney.

In Radio, DDB Chicago took home the Grand Prix for its “Real Men of Genius” campaign on behalf of Anheuser-Busch’s Bud Light. While some jury members expressed concern about awarding a campaign that won last year, Josh Rabinowitz at Grey Worldwide said it was the obvious choice. “It’s simply piss-in-your-pants funny,” he said. “It’s been around a long time, but they’ve taken it to the next level.” Twelve gold lions were awarded in the category, two of which went to U.S. agencies.