India has claimed Asia’s first grand prix of 62nd Cannes Lions for the year 2015, winning an award that recognises a brand’s efforts to challenge gender bias.
BBDO Mumbai won the inaugural Glass Lion of 62nd Cannes Lions for its ‘Touch the pickle’ campaign for Whisper, a brand of sanitary napkins by Procter & Gamble. The idea, to combat a common myth about menstruation, came out ahead of one of the most widely tipped campaigns of 2015, Leo Burnett Canada’s #likeagirl ad for Always.
BBDO’s Mumbai office won another of only eight Lions awarded in the Glass Lions category with the Share the Load campaign for Ariel.
While ‘Share the Load’ started a debate on how laundry was just not a woman’s job, ‘Touch the Pickle’ focused on breaking taboos — traditional and modern — that are imposed on a woman during her period. India’s last Grand Prix winner was Lead India for The Times of India which won in 2008.
“What gives us immense joy is these are movement ideas that had a transformational impact on both brands. These ideas embraced socio-cultural tension points and found creative ways to resolve issues. They changed behaviour and drove a significant increase in sales. For us, this represents where advertising is going. We’ve got to really thank our clients who took risks every step of the way,” said Josy Paul, chairman and chief creative officer, BBDO
The senior management of BBDO India gave the festival a miss and wasn’t available to collect the trophy — a rarity when it comes to Grand Prix. The win elated the Indian contingent at Cannes. Ashish Chakravarty, national creative director of Contract said: “It feels great to know our country has won a Grand Prix. Moreover, I’ve seen the work and know it’s real. It’s always better when a prestigious award is won on ‘real’ work.”
The Glass Lion was launched in collaboration with LeanIn.org, the foundation led by Facebook COO Sheryl Sandberg, who spoke at last year’s event.