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Expanding your global creative horizon

We’ve been at the Cannes Lions Health festival these last few days. Now in its third year, the two-day event sees the global healthcare comms scene gather to share their best work, latest thinking, plus a few Aperol spritz on the side. Well, it is Cannes after all.

We were very proud to have one of our campaigns reach the shortlist this year, more so considering 2,600 pieces had been submitted from over 60 countries. And it was while watching the Lions Health Awards on Saturday night that the global scale of the festival realty sunk in and made me stop and think…

You see, it’s easy to live in a bubble and let that filter your creativity. Letting your brain cut down an idea before it’s really fully-formed. After all, we are UK consumers who probably all use NHS. We buy UK products in UK pharmacies and health food stores, remembering UK adverts in English on UK TV and billboards. But that world doesn’t have to set the rules, because health is something we all have in common, with causes that transcend border and boundaries.

Cannes Health 2016To see agencies from Australia, India, Hong Kong and the UAE throw out the rules they never had and approach problems in new ways was inspiring to hear. Like using nurses’ eye-witness account to help end of life care in India; Like putting MS into a bicycle in Australia; Beating Indian air-pollution with kazoos to help lung capacity; Giving kids happier vaccinations with football in Brazil; Getting ED noticed through Spiderman’s “webbing” in Hong Kong.

One judge’s comment about his criteria for winning work being “something he was jealous he didn’t come up with it himself” was as honest as it was flattering. Now as we prepare to get back to the week, building new campaigns of our own, I notice the Lions goodybag has Life Changing Creativity written on it.

A line which couldn’t be more fitting for the work we all aspire to create in health.

With 15 years in consumer health and nutrition, OTC, FMCG and retail sectors, Matt is an experienced communications consultant who helps brands tell stories through traditional channels and new technologies.