Marilyn Manson, Snapchat And Airbnb

You know that slightly uneasy feeling you get when overwhelmed by an excess of choice? Well that’s kind of what my second day at Cannes Lions has felt like, more than ever I realised we are truly living in the attention economy…so many great choices, so little time.

My day started off at the “Wake up with the Economist” session, a daily morning gathering of some of the worlds leading marketers to have a casual chat on the beach and deconstruct creativity. Today the Executive editor Daniel Franklin chatted to the heads of marketing at Nestle SA, Mars, and Airbnb.



Jonathan Mildenhall was the stand out chap, he used to be the head of marketing for Coca-Cola and now is the CMO for Airbnb, a company which has now helped accommodate over 37-million people. Mildenhall talked about the power of not killing creativity upfront with over the top research and testing and evaluating after to learn lessons going forward.

He also had an interesting view on agency compensation, Airbnb pays its agencies on a “per night” basis, sharing a cut every time accommodation is booked through the site.

“Too many clients are squeezing the financial lifeblood out of advertising agencies and then they complain that the work’s not great,” Mildenhall said. “The compensation models and creative aspirations of many brands are not aligned.”

The afternoon talks were a blur. I managed to pop in to hear Marilyn Manson, who seems like a super interesting / smart chap. In a talk with Tor Myhren, the global chief executive at Grey, Marilyn shared his love of branding saying that he decided on his style and brand before he ever created his first song. For those interested, he created his name from the also made up names of Marilyn Monroe and Charles Manson.

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Finally I also got to listen to Snapchat co-founder Evan Spiegel. Snapchat in a slightly odd twist has branded the Palais with a massive billboard. It’s interesting to see a tech company turn to traditional media to get some love. He revealed that Snapchat now has over 200 million daily users, that he designed the logo in a couple of hours in his bedroom, and that the only reason he chose to use yellow for the company’s branding was because no one else used that colour…brilliant.



Anyway I’m off to have supper with a group of interesting random ad people from all over the world so Bonne nuit from me and see you tomorrow.

First Appeared on Memeburn.

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