Netflix and Amazon will each make their first-ever official appearances as presenters during the 2020 Cannes Lions Festival of Creativity this summer, festival schedulers said today.
Jean Tanis, global creative marketing lead for Netflix, will discuss how the streaming service builds excitement for its upcoming programming at a session during the festival, which will be held June 22-26 in Cannes, France.
“Our mission is to create stories viewers love. Part of that is finding different ways to connect them and allow them to share in those stories, so creating anticipation plays a massive role,” Tanis said in a statement. “We don’t want them to sell them a story. We want them to become part of it.”
Tanis will be joined onstage by Chris Breen, chief creative officer of the Atlanta-based agency Chemistry. “Any agency can make an ad,” Breen said. “What we do is make our clients famous by finding new ways to tap into their unique cultures. That’s what we live for and that’s what we’ll bring to life during this session with Netflix.”
The ecommerce mammoth Amazon will also make its Cannes Lions presenting debut, with head of global brand and advertising Claudine Cheever slated to appear onstage in a session about how the company brand-builds through customer experience.
“In our research and surveys, Netflix and Amazon are two of the names that consistently come back as brands that our community wants to hear from, and it’s exciting that we’ve been able to deliver this for 2020,” Cannes Lions vp of content Charlotte Williams said about the lineup. “These are two global powerhouse brands whose value and growth is huge—and they’re winning Lions too—proof that creativity is a key driver in their success.”
Netflix’s inaugural presentation at Cannes Lions comes during a year when the company will face steeper-than-ever competition in the streaming and entertainment space. It also comes as marketing spend at the company is growing. In 2019, the company spent more than $2.6 billion on marketing efforts, according to its most recent annual report. (Campaigns for some of the service’s shows have been awarded at the festival in years past, including the coveted Grand Prix.)
Less than a year ago, the streaming giant brought former BBC Studios CMO Jackie Lee-Joe aboard to head up the company’s marketing. The company has since made some cuts to its marketing department as part of a larger marketing strategy overhaul. The streamer has repeatedly emphasized it will not run advertisements on its service.
Netflix’s decision to present at Cannes Lions come a year after another streamer used the festival as a launchpad of sorts. Quibi, the deep-pocketed mobile video service slated to debut in April of this year, took the 2019 Cannes Lions festival stage to announce details of its upcoming service and its offerings to advertisers.