Virtual worlds

Lessons from the Cannes Lions: Data, technology and innovation collide in virtual worlds

Backup Ukraine‘ by Virtue Worldwide New York for Polycam x UNESCO, was the second most awarded work at this year’s Cannes Lions International Festival of Creativity. Shedding light on the war in Ukraine, he gave Ukrainians a mobile phone tool that scans monuments and cultural treasures, turning them into 3D models in an online archive, so they can be reconstructed in the metaverse, in case they are destroyed.

The physical and virtual worlds collided at this year’s Cannes Lions. From the rise of the Metaverse to NFTs, AR, VR and games, innovations in technology and data are evolving rapidly. As debates about DE&I, building communities in virtual worlds swept onto Festival stages, Lion-winning work also highlighted the ability of virtual technology to raise awareness of real-world issues, such as war in Ukraine.

Can the metaverse be a better verse?

On stage, discussions about the metaverse and emerging Web3 platforms consider diversity and inclusion, as around 60% of people think there is a lack of inclusivity in virtual worlds. This adds a risk that biases in the physical world will be mapped and amplified into new dimensions, if not addressed and prioritized.

Community building was also mentioned, because web3 is not just a new iteration of social. As Paris Hilton, CEO of 11:11 Media, put it, “Web2 was about the audience, Web3 was about the community.” Brands entering these spaces need to join the conversation and add value to it, or build a world where a new community can grow.

Pelle Sjoenell, creative director of video game company Activision Blizzard, said: “It’s not virtual memory just because it takes place in a virtual world. People live a life in these virtual worlds, not just scrolling through a stream.

The Lion-winning work this year demonstrated that community spirit. ‘Hidden spots‘ by Gut São Paulo for The Kraft Heinz Co won silver in the Direct and Media Lions by solving an issue within the gaming community. This allowed players to find hidden places in the game worlds to hide and eat a burger, sponsored by Heinz, without interrupting their gameplay. While Skittles and DDB Chicago used Twitch to conduct a conversation with customers in its work doubly rewarded with gold’excuse the rainbow‘.

AR on the rise

While the Metaverse is just beginning to make its way into the world, AR has finally gone stratospheric. As XR creator Don Allen Stevenson said during the Cannes Lions, “there is great power behind the visual because innovative AR solutions can help break down the barriers between people and brands.”

In another illuminating session, Snap Inc explained that over the past decade the brand has focused on driving consumer behavior to prepare them for the mass adoption of augmented reality, and number one on the list was to encourage people to use the camera up. of the keyboard.

Google is also advancing in the world of augmented reality with its ever-evolving multi-search, which will soon allow you to search while scanning the world around you. As the camera becomes the new keyboard, brands will be able to discover new ways to connect with consumers where they are, like playing a video clip over a chip they’re about to eat, like Goodby Silverstein & Partners San Francisco did it for Doritos/Cheetos with their Entertainment Lions Bronze Medal,’Snack Screens/Flamin’ Hottie‘.

Discussion of NFTs and Virtual Spending

“The primary way people communicate globally is through what they buy,” said Gary Vaynerchuk, president and CEO of VaynerX and Vayner Media. He thinks it’s often overlooked – and it’s no different when it comes to NFTs.

When the metaverse goes mainstream, consumers will use their virtual wallets to communicate who they are in virtual worlds. As an example, Gold Social & Influencer Lions’ winnerThe first meta-sneaker‘ by Berlin Cameron New York for Under Armour, sees the lines blurring between how consumers are able to represent themselves in reality and in the metaverse.

Eric Jacobs, Chief Innovation Officer of VaynerMedia, added: “If you think about the way I – or most of us – express ourselves in our public persona these days, it’s our social media profiles. . In Web3, this will become our connected wallet and the NFTs we have in our wallet will be important not only for the type of utility they provide, but also for what they say about us”.

Read more insights and learnings around six key themes in the official report Summary report of the Cannes Lions which is out now.