Our road to Cannes: Young Lions 2014

1st Jul 2014 | Posted by Linnéa Rinäs Linnéa Rinäs's picture

This post was co-authored by Joseph Borenstein.

When KOMM - “The Swedish Association of Communication Agencies” - announced earlier this year that they were arranging a national qualifying round for the international communications competition Young Lions, we were of course eager to participate. Especially since this year, for the first time ever, the competition had a PR category.

Young Lions is a competition for young professionals under the age of 28, and is part of the Cannes Lions – the world’s biggest event for people working in creative communications, advertising and related fields. In order to qualify for the international Young Lions competition in Cannes, each country arranges national qualification rounds built around a local cause. Unlike Cannes Lions, Young Lions isn’t a competition where you compete with already completed campaigns – instead, each team has to come up with new campaign ideas.

Our road to Cannes began on March 3rd when KOMM released its Swedish brief for the non-profit organization National Association for Mobility Impaired Children and Young Adults. One week – and many late nights at the office – later, we submitted our entry. On May 12th, we danced up on stage as we were announced the winners of Young Lions Sweden. We were both excited and proud to win the top award in the PR category and to move on to compete in the international competition.

On June 13th, we left Stockholm for Cannes and the international Young Lions competition. The day after, we received the competition brief at Palais des Festivales. The brief came from UNODC – the United Nations Office on Drugs and Crime - who wanted our help with creative PR around its Blue Heart campaign. The campaign aims to raise awareness of human trafficking and position their symbol, the Blue Heart, as a symbol bringing awareness to human trafficking the same way the red ribbon brings awareness to AIDS.

We had twelve hours to create a complete idea for a PR campaign. I don’t think we’ve ever been as tired as when we submitted our entry that night, but at the same time we were really proud and happy with our idea.

The following day we met with the international jury. We had five minutes to present our idea followed by five minutes to answer their questions before waiting a few hours to hear the results. Unfortunately, we learned that we were not among the three winning teams. Of course, we would have loved to win a Lion, but looking back at our time in Cannes we are really pleased with our performance in the competition and with the fact that we had five extraordinary and inspiring days, meeting other creative PR consultants from all over the world and listening to seminars with the best of the best in the business.

It goes without saying that we already have our minds set on competing in next year’s edition of Young Lions! In addition to the excitement of the Young Lions competition, the top-industry insights and global perspective at Cannes make it a festival worth returning to, year after year.
To read more about our travels to Cannes, visit our blog at the Swedish PR-magazine ”Dagens Media” (in Swedish).


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