‘Predictive Analytics,’ How to Win the PR Award, and Partying at Cannes

Calling the Cannes Lions 2011 event both “a networking opportunity and a learning opportunity,” Israel Mirsky, Porter Novelli’s EVP of emerging media and technology, spoke with us direct from France today about the learning sessions and other events happening in addition to the big awards announcements. He has been blogging about the goings-on at Cannes along with his colleagues, who are in town to work with clients, like Mofilm, who are participating in the event.

“During the day, sessions are extremely well-attended,” he told us. “But as soon as the lights go down people are in the streets until 5:30 in the morning.” That sounds about right.

From the daytime perspective, Mirsky emphasized the importance of technology and data in all aspects of what’s being discussed at the conference. Moreover, “predictive analysis,” basically looking at a data-driven crystal ball to assess the prospects for a campaign or even whether to continue an initiative, have been heavily discussed.

“The rise of forecasting as a focus of PR, advertising, and marketing is going to pervade much of our industry,” Mirsky said. “Especially the new PR that’s deeply concerned with real-time conversations.”

And what about the big ad agency win of the Grand Prix PR award?

“We’re learning what it takes to win here,” he said. “I think advertising firms do an amazing job of packaging themselves. PR is focused on changing attitudes, beliefs, and behaviors. We’re not necessarily as focused on packaging.”

In addition to the Porter Novelli blog and MSLGroup’s chat site, Ad Age has also been covering Cannes closely. The Cannes Lions 2011 is happening through Saturday.

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