Ahead of the industry’s annual exodus to the south of France, Paul Coxhill, MD WARC & SVP Cannes Lions Digital Ventures, makes a call for advertisers to up their game.

A confession. I’ve been a marketer for 24 years but I try to watch TV on catch-up to avoid ads. Or start checking my phone during the ad break if I have to watch live. Or immediately shut-down web ads before I view the content. Wait, you too?

Because I am also a consumer who is sick and tired of receiving irrelevant messages. Or being interrupted by a scrolling pop-up when I was trying to do something else, like reading a blog about what great marketing looks like!

And I’m not alone. According to Lumen Research, only 12% of viewable ads get noticed. And over 600m devices now have ad blocking software in place – as Doc Searls says, the biggest consumer boycott in history. And as the trend for marketing spend moves towards online, performance-based advertising, this is only going to get worse unless we challenge ourselves to think differently. Otherwise, we may be forced to confront a world where consumers just ignore our best work. However great the campaign is, it gets lost because mediocrity is the expectation and our consumer is using their time to do something else. Consumers just switch-off – figuratively and literally. At WARC, we’ve imagined that world in our short film. See what you think.

But I also passionately believe that great marketing can and does cut through. By finding new ways to engage – such as the Missguided partnership with Love Island or Sky’s ad-free sponsorship of the new Chris Evan’s breakfast show on Virgin Radio in the UK – or through creatively brilliant execution that forces us to look up from our phones, or put down the TV remote and engage. Work that creates a buzz that you can’t help notice, like the It’s a Tide Ad campaign in the US or the WARC 100 award-winning Gillette ad in Israel.

At WARC, all of our team have the mission to rid the world of ineffective marketing. Poor marketing wastes money, time, attention and resource. All of which we can ill-afford in this fast-moving, resource- constrained world. So we’ve put together a white paper on the five rules of effective marketing, which launches on June 17th to coincide with the start of Cannes Lions 2019 where the world’s most creative marketing will be celebrated. You can register to receive it here.

The irony of course is that this blog is marketing. But if you’ve read to here, then hopefully it was effective! Let me know what you think of the white paper.

Wednesday is WARC Day in Cannes – you can read the full programme and register for individual sessions here: WARC in Cannes.