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Nepa at Cannes Lions Festival 2023

June 30, 2023

Karen Chandler

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If you work in marketing, or a marketing adjacent field, then your LinkedIn feed has probably been full of Cannes Lions posts over the last couple of weeks. Between the 19th and 23rd of June, the Cannes Lions International Festival of Creativity returned to the The Palais in Cannes. The largest gathering in the creative marketing community, the event celebrates creativity, effectiveness, and innovation in the global advertising, marketing, and communication industries. And Nepa were there too!

Insights Manager Charlotta Lundberg and Data Scientist Jessika Ödling spent the week yacht hopping between panels, discussions, and presentations, with some personal highlights of theirs including watching Les Binet discuss The 3rd Age of Effectiveness and stressing the importance of video in brand building, and the COO of Open AI Brad Lightcap discussing how AI is not there to take jobs, just enhance productivity.

The key themes

Throughout the festival there were three key themes that kept coming up, time and again.

Maximising the effects of your campaigns

One thing that was mentioned across the days was how to use different platforms correctly to build a brand. You can’t just use the same content and hope that it will achieve the effect you desire. Every platform has a very different audience, with very different expectations, and a very different language. However, even though the delivery is different, you need to maintain some consistency across every platform to build brand recognition.

You also need to stand out and, as our recent blog post by Head of R&D Robert Beatus demonstrates, those that create strong positive emotions are the ones that drive ad awareness.


A big topic that will undoubtedly be front and centre at events for the coming years was Artificial Intelligence. Mentioned in almost all sessions, even those focused on inclusivity and diversity, the main takeaway was that we should see it as a tool – It’s not here to take our jobs!

“This industry [marketing] will be busier than ever in 5 years“, said Brad Lightcap, COO Open AI.

It should be there to enable people to be even more creative, and push the limits of what is possible to achieve. For example when Dall-E was created people were worried that it would be the death of art. However, it’s led to the rise of impressionism and helped develop the art world further.

Inclusivity / Diversity

The final major theme was inclusiveness and diversity. No matter what kind of marketing activities or materials people are creating, these two things should be at the centre. Rather than act performatively, brands need to walk the talk – Be it including a wider range of people in leadership, a variety of people in production teams, or setting specific diversity KPIs. Bias is bad for business.

And that’s a wrap on 2023. We hope to see you there in 2024!