LONDON: Simplicity, differentiation and participation are some of the prevailing themes that emerged across the campaigns topping this year's Warc 100.
The Warc 100 is an annual ranking of the world's best marketing campaigns, based on performance in effectiveness and strategy competitions.
"We talk about tech-y, shiny, sophisticated innovations and sometimes it is the simplest ones that are really useful to people, that make a much bigger difference," Amal el Masri JWT MEA chief strategy officer told Warc as she outlined the thinking behind the Fakka campaign for Vodafone in Egypt.
She described Egypt as consisting of many different parts which could almost be many different countries. So, "it's always interesting to find the things that unite all of us", she said.
Tony Harris, BBDO Guerrero CEO, had no doubt about what united the Philippines: fun. He contrasted people's perception of the Philippines and of Filipinos; ideas of the country tended to be negative – traffic, crime, corruption – while impressions of the people were the exact opposite – happy, hospitable, generous and funny.
So using the people to promote the country as a tourism destination was an obvious route. Filipinos created their own ideas online around the idea "It's more fun in the Philippines" which were then taken around the world. Harris noted the need for the campaign to be competitive, to be grounded in human experience and to be interactive. "At the heart of it, when you looked at these insights, was fun," he said. "Or in fact more fun."
Car insurance is not a category that could ever be described as fun but NRMA's Car Creation campaign was certainly different, building a working car out of the parts it covered as standard but which other insurers classified as extras.
"Instead of having emotional fluffy promises we disrupted that and we went the opposite (way). We went proof over promise," said Hristos Varouhas, executive planning director at Whybin\TBWA\Dan.
"I wouldn't necessarily recommend you always do that," he added. "It's a case of seeing how the game in that category is played and seeing how you can differentiate within it."
The importance of effectiveness was emphasised to Warc by a number of senior adverting industry figures in Cannes, with an apocalyptic John Zeigler CEO, DDB Asia Pacific, going so far as to claim "the whole of the creative industry is doomed unless we can really integrally link effectiveness to what we do".
Data sourced from Warc