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Cannes Lions 2018: Technology gives tools to take creativity to next level, says Younghee Lee, CMO, Samsung

Malcolm Ponyton, Global CCO of Cheil, also took to the stage to talk about how Cheil has technology to boost creativity. He mentioned a few major campaigns from the agency, including one from India: Good Vibes Project

“Technology will be the saviour of creativity because it gives us tools to take it to the next level,” said Younghee Lee, Global CMO, Samsung. She was talking on the topic ‘Is Technology the Downfall or Saviour of Creativity?’ at the Cannes Lions International Festival of Creativity last week, which she co-presented with Cheil’s Global CCO Malcolm Poynton.

Describing how technology has dramatically changed our world, industry and society – bringing us to the dawn of a fourth industrial revolution, with AI and big data revolutionising the way we work – she outlined how effective and targeted marketing has, in effect, been democratised and new opportunities created for a host of brand new digitally-powered next generation services and products.


5G will control everything around us – changing how we live, work and play; communicating with infrastructure; changing how we use technology and, in turn, revolutionising our economies and societies, she said. It will enable VR live streaming and 3D hologram meetings. Meanwhile, AR will open up new worlds – facilitating automatic driving, for example, and VR remote control – making our lifestyles freer than ever before.

And, as data is the lifeblood of these technologies, optimising it depends on safeguarding people’s privacy in order to protect it, she added. But it also has another benefit: as a catalyst for people to self-improve and push themselves to the next level. Technology and creativity must take us to a better world, she noted. And for this reason, our focus should be less on technology for technology’s sake and more on what technology can deliver in terms of outcome.


Poynton also called for more technology to be used to power creativity. He lamented that with 60% of marketing dollars now spent on programmatic mismatching ads with inappropriate contextual content, this new technology in particular has been given a bad name.

And he highlighted three mega trends now driving transformation: the ability for brands to make a difference and to do so at scale; the ability for technology to transport users to another place in order to experience new things; and the transformation of passive consumers into participants.


Poynton illustrated how all this can be brought to fruition with three of Cheil’s recent campaigns – Cheil India’s Good Vibes Project, which won a slew of awards, not least an Innovation Lion at this week’s festival, for its app which, through the language of vibrations, gives the deaf-blind community a tool to communicate. It works on a set of hand gestures and taps, and helps this community to connect from wherever they are.

Meanwhile, ‘A Moon for mankind’ offered VR ‘training for space missions’ experience. This saw Samsung teaming up with NASA to open up the moon to celebrate the 50th anniversary of the first lunar landing and it just goes to show the types of experiences that can be in store for audiences today if we allow our creativity to be unleashed across the plethora of technology-enabled experiences today.  


And last, but certainly not the least, the 'Cube Movie' campaign by Cheil Seoul for the Samsung Galaxy S8 offered 10,000 personalised move combinations, inspired by a Rubik’s cube. The active engagement of consumers in watching these enjoyable participatory advertising experiences, which each showcased some of the features of the phone, was a sign of things to come.

“Creativity has the power to move people. At the same time, technology is moving and transforming creativity,” added Poynton.

The session concluded with the assertion that by giving creators the tools to unleash creativity and take it to the next level, technology will be the saviour rather than the downfall of creativity – as long as brands and agencies navigate modern marketing’s unpredictable waters by always putting the consumer first.

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