Last summer, I attended the Cannes Lions International Festival of Creativity in France, an awards festival that celebrates the most innovative and thought-provoking work produced all around the world each year. The most influential work from 2016 was on display, brilliant minds shared their genius, and I got to experience it all.
Dozens of brands had beautiful displays and thought-provoking pieces, but there were a few who took things to the next level!
SALTWATER BREWING AND SEA CREATURES
One next-level piece was the SaltWater Brewing “Edible 6 Ring Pack” initiative, a corporate social responsibility campaign geared toward eliminating trash in oceans. This campaign was produced for a craft beer company who made it their mission to help keep our oceans clean. As a Florida-based company, they see firsthand how trash impacts the lives of sea creatures and decided to create a positive alternative to the harmful plastic rings. SaltWater produced a completely edible and biodegradable 6-pack ring (made of wheat and barley) to eliminate the plastic rings that often find their way into the oceans and are mistaken for food by turtles. So not only does SaltWater do great beer, they are also challenging our traditions and helping sea creatures live longer lives. Which is a triple win if you ask me!
WHIRLPOOL AND TEACH FOR AMERICA
Another example of how creativity inspired change is Whirpool’s “Care Counts” campaign. While it might not be something we think about often, many students in underprivileged districts skip school because they do not have access to clean clothes. Whirlpool recognized this startling fact and donated washers and dryers to these schools, allowing kids access to washing machines and dryers for free. In May, Whirpool announced its partnership with Teach for America and their plan to expand the program to 10 districts and more than 58 schools. Last year, their program washed on average 50 loads of clothes per student throughout the school year.
BROWN BAG MARKETING AND PIEDMONT HEALTHCARE
Fast forward to my current gig at Brown Bag Marketing. We partner with companies that impact people’s lives like Piedmont Healthcare. We help bring awareness to health issues like breast cancer, heart disease, and many more. We strive to promote positivity, diversity, and strength, as well as provide important information and treatment options. And often, our campaigns are simple, straightforward and heartfelt, like the one below.
Advertising has the power to influence opinions on a mass scale—to change the world. It’s rewarding to see these corporate responsibility campaigns firsthand and watch how brands affected others’ lives for the better. I am proud to be a part of an industry filled with forward-thinking individuals who use their creative ideas to influence positive change.
What are some creative campaigns that have been meaningful to you?