cannes lions

Creative Commerce Lions: Cannes 2024 Decoded

VML take home only UK win for Baileys' 'Sound Scales'

By Creative Salon

VML London and New York have snagged the single UK win in the Creative Commerce category with a Silver Lion for 'Sound Scales'.

Baileys introduced "Baileys Sound Scales," an audio feature that helps consumers determine how much Baileys is left in their bottle and suggests recipes based on the remaining amount. By visiting and blowing gently over the bottle, users could receive accurate measurements and recipe ideas like Baileys Brioche French Toast and Baileys Espresso Martini.

Developed by VML and supported by influencer partners, the campaign included a 15-second social video and content creation by Donal Skehan and Mark Rodgers. The initiative aimed to inspire consumers with treat recipes and offer discount codes, enhancing the Baileys experience post-festive season.

Elsewhere, the campaign won a Silver in the Audio and Radio category too.

The Grand Prix went to Publicis Conseil for Renault's 'Cars To Work'.

Renault's CareMakers inclusive mobility program, aimed at providing low-income individuals with mobility solutions, introduced a new leasing model for job seekers in remote areas. This model allowed payments to begin only after the probation period passed, and the car could be returned if the probation was not successful. This initiative supports new job starters and enhances Renault's visibility in French regions where car ownership is crucial.

Other wins include a Gold for VML New York and Oreo, Edelman Toronto and Ikea and a Silver for Leo Burnett Mexico City and ADT Security.

A total of 19 Lions were awarded in the Creative Commerce category: one Grand Prix, four Gold, five Silver and nine Bronze.

The Judges said ...

Manuel Borde, global chief creative officer, Commerce, VML, was one of the jurors and this is what he had to say...

Why did the winners win?

Creativity in this industry has traditionally come in the form of a beautiful script, a powerful line or an impactful visual. But commerce is a space where brands and agencies are bringing creativity into all aspects of the marketing mix – and right through to the business model itself. “Cars to Work” was an innovative solution to a social issue that plagues people in France’s “mobility deserts”. The program leased vehicles to those in the hunt for a job and in need of a car, but only required payment to start once they were hired. In doing so, Renault Group put thousands more “butts in seats”, demonstrating that purpose in commerce doesn’t have to lose sight of business growth. A deserved Grand Prix winner. 

Were there any trends you noticed in this year’s category?

Overall, there was a growing sophistication around commerce. This was Year three for the Creative Commerce category, and it was exciting to see how it’s evolving – from innovative use of media to 21st century coupon redemption, executed with the utmost attention to craft. This category no longer only elicits responses like “that’s so emotional” or “that’s so funny!” Each of the winners in Creative Commerce hit home with a strongly felt “wow, that’s effing clever!” It was the sentiment all of us had in the room with the work we awarded.

Our jury was welcoming of smart ways to take advantage of owned media, physical products, and/or channels to create conversion experiences while strengthening brand promises. “Sunset O’Clock” from Corona not only uncovered an innovative media property centered on the product itself, but by tapping into the time stamp on the bottles and matching rewards for shopkeepers to the time of sunset, continued to build on the brand’s positioning. Well worthy of a Silver Lion.

In the strongest sub-category, Consumer Goods, brands and agencies worked to modernize time-honored tactics like couponing and price offers. The winners gamified the experience and simultaneously built their brand, while driving engagement and traffic. A prime example was “OREO Calls”, which scored Gold in Mobile-Led Commerce. (Full disclosure: I was out of the room while this one was judged because it was a VML case.) This idea played off the fact that basketball referees’ black and white uniforms echo OREO Cookies. Fans were invited to scan real-time officiated calls during U.S. college basketball “March Madness” telecasts and score OREO offers. Simple, sweet, successful – and as my fellow jurors noted, an example of creativity, conversion and craft at a very high level. 

Both Corona and Oreos provided evidence of ideas that stretched small budgets, and turned day-to-day opportunities into impactful, earned-first disruptive experiences that help move the needle. Commerce is truly an ode to resourcefulness and resilience. Outside of markets like the UK and US, brands do not start each brief with a big production budget, and not everyone can aim towards a Super Bowl spot and/or get a celebrity through the door. You don’t win necessarily with big budgets here; you win with creativity as the multiplier. 

Based on the entries you reviewed – what advice would you give to anyone hoping to win next year?

My best advice is to remember that the real “purpose” of Commerce is sales. More than in previous years our jury focused on rewarding creativity that unapologetically rang the cash register. While categories like sustainability (and smart business ideas like “Cars to Work”) bring in touches of purpose within the commerce ecosystem, the main aims must be business outcomes. This should be a clear message for future entries and juries; this category is first and foremost about saving the business before trying to save the world.

Follow Creative Salon's Cannes Lions 2024 coverage through our dedicated content section.


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