Let’s Change the World!

29th Jun 2016 | Posted by Linnéa Rinäs Linnéa Rinäs's picture

Can PR and marketing be a force for good? I’m personally convinced that they can. And, at this year’s Cannes Lions, I got the opportunity to listen to a few speakers who not only agreed, but inspired all of us PR professionals to take action.

Steve Vranakis, Creative Director at Google UK's Creative Lab, kicked off by sharing his thoughts on why we all should aspire to be what he called ’creative activists.’ Vranakis calls his team a bunch of ’idealists and vagabonds’ whose day job is imagining the future and thinking of new ways to connect people and brands with the help of technology.

Vranaki’s most brilliant example of ‘Creative Activism’ was the Refugee Info Hub, launched by Google – in cooperation with the International Rescue Committee and Mercy Corps – in response to the Syrian refugee crisis. Built in just 36 hours, the portal brings crucial information to refugees fleeing the conflict in Syria. To make the portal fast and easy to update, it’s built solely with Google Docs, and designed with white text on a black background to reduce battery usage. Vranakis estimated that the platform has now helped more than 100,000 refugees reaching Europe.

On the same note, the always brilliant Cindy Gallop hosted a seminar called “How to change the world through advertising.”  While buzzwords like purpose, cause marketing and CSR get bandied around, Gallop claimed we need to step up our creative game to make a real change in the world.

Like Vranakis, Gallop encouraged us all to decide what we want the future to be and then invent it. Sometimes, Gallop said, making that change can be as easy as reflecting the world as it really is.

I’ve listed a few of my personal favourites on the theme of changing the world by reflecting reality below. Well worth checking out!


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