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eurobest 2017

eurobest 2017

From the basement of Victoria House in London, eurobest hosted its 30th festival and celebrated the best European creativity that we have seen this year. Conversations roamed from the existential crisis that creativity finds itself in, to the importance of socio-economic diversity and about how our industry shouldn’t shy away from difficult conversations. The founder of Uncommon Creative Studios, Nils Leonard delivered a powerful manifesto for the year ahead, looking at the Skip Ad button as both a panic moment for the industry, and also an opportunity for our creativity can shine: “Creativity isn’t a discipline or a haircut. It’s a survival mechanic.”

The talks were hosted between the Showcase stage and the Silent stage, while Facebook delivered a lesson in crafting video content from the Interactive corner. Faber & Faber brought their Academy to the Screening room to host creative writing workshops and there were interactive exhibitions and an Instagram breakout space that encouraged people to challenge their creativity across social media.

Below we’ve picked out a few highlights from the talks.

Brands in the Basement

Speakers: Krista Massey, SVP – Marketing Activation & Engagement, SunTrust, Meg Farren, CMO, KFC UK & Ireland, Kelly Engstrom, Head of Marketing & Communications, EE and Conor McNicholas (Moderator)

  • The start of the conversation centred around the power of creativity and the existential crisis that it seems to be facing. Kelly Engstrom said “As the industry becomes more fragmented, the more creativity is needed to cut through. Creativity is the hook that drives you to want to listen to a brand.”
  • Meg Farren discussed the nature of the world we operate from, “In the cognitive clutter of the world today, we make more than 30,000 decisions each day. The role of creativity is to force the brain to pay attention.”
  • Krista Massey emphasised that she doesn’t see herself as a banker but rather as a marketer. She talked about trust building between the client and the agency, “When you don’t know who works for who, that’s when you know you’ve got something magical.”
  • The discussion moved towards content creators and the shift towards mobile, which is where the future is focused. Farren honed in on creating unique social content, “You have to speak in a way that’s credible to the brand. If you’re going to crash the party, you’d better bring champagne.”


To Boldly Go Where No Man Has Gone Before

Speaker: Colin Byrne, UK CEO, Weber Shandwick & Jane Martinson, The Guardian (Moderator)

  • Colin Byrne was speaking as he draws his 40 years in the PR industry to a close. He started aged 21, falling into the industry having never heard of it. As he says of his career, “My business model in life is to work out what you love and how to get paid for it.”
  • Byrne discussed the future of the UK: “Brexit is the most divisive thing to happen in my lifetime. It took the media, politics, the establishment and advertisers by surprise. It was a big wake up call.”
  • Speaking of his early foray into the New Labour political sphere, he pointed out that fake news is not a new phenomenon: “I practised fake news 30 years ago as part of the debased business of what became known as spin.”
  • Examining the changing nature of the world in which brands operate, Byrne said, “Brands are now involved in issues that 10 years ago they wouldn’t have gone near. They have no choice but to engage in social issues.”


The D Word: Not Just Another Diversity Panel

Speakers: Asmita Dubey, Global Chief Digital Officer, L’Oréal , Evadney Campbell MBE, Co-Founder & MD, Shiloh PR, Nicky Bullard, Chairwoman & CCO, MRM//Meteorite, Sulaiman Khan, Founder & Chief Purpose Operator, ThisAbility and Harjot Singh, CSO, McCann Worldgroup EMEA (Moderator)

  • Chaired by Harjot Singh, the panel discussion saw each of the speakers deliver an impassioned short speech on their own experience of the world and of the workplace. Singh opened the discussion by reminding us that “this is not purely an ideological conversation. It is time for a cultural awakening.”
  • Sulaiman Khan addressed the oft ignored minority of disabled people within the creative industries. He believes that we should “use disability and creativity as an advantage. People are so afraid to say the wrong thing, they don’t say anything. We need to connect the dots to open the discourse.”
  • Asmita Dubey moved to L’Oréal to look at what democratising beauty really means believing that “the magic word is assimilation, of views and people.”
  • Evadney Campbell talked about her early childhood, spent growing up with her grandparents in Jamaica before moving to London to be with two total strangers: her parents. She believes that the word diversity implies too great a difference. “We should think of diversity as inclusivity and equality and we need a new way of dealing with it.”
  • Nicky Bullard used Lara Croft’s Tomb Raider Power Packs as a metaphor for both the setbacks and the wins you’ll have over the course of your life. Each one allows you to progress just that little bit further.


Visit eurobest's website to find out more.

About the author

Izzy Ashton, Assistant Editor of BITE, Creativebrief

Izzy is a writer/researcher for BITE, Creativebrief’s daily insight into global marketing trends and the cultural movements driving them. She keeps abreast of the latest communication, technology and consumer news, and is responsible for conducting interviews with key agency strategists and creatives to gain insight into the most innovative global campaigns.

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