24 June, 2021 (UK Time)


09:30 - 09:40
Welcome & Introduction
09:40 - 09:45
ICCO Welcome
09:45 - 10:15
Creativity Eats Culture

We’re living through tumultuous, polarising times, with enormous cultural, societal, political and environmental shifts underway, even before the pandemic, that are having a fundamental effect on how businesses and organisations show up in the world.

So what’s the role of creativity in this landscape? Can big creative ideas and creative campaigns really make a difference in breaking down borders, erasing taboos and reflecting diverse cultural nuances?

And – with so many Cannes Lions-winning campaigns over recent years being focused on the most serious and earnest of topics and problems – when times feel heavy, is there still a role for humour and levity in creative execution?

10:20 - 10:35
Wintour is Coming: The Value of Being a Ruthless Editor In Your Own Life

As communicators and creatives, it’s essential to bring our unique perspective to everything we do. But when we’re surrounded with sameness of thought, how can we keep the easy pull of conformity at bay? In this session, Rebecca Wilson, EVP, Australia & Singapore for WE, shares how to cultivate the radical self-honesty needed to bring our authentic selves to our lives and our work, and unlock greater impact. 

WE Communications
10:40 - 11:10
Too Cool for School?

Celebrity, cool and cultural relevance are not tokenist or superficial; they are fundamental to the success of purpose campaigns.

From Marcus Rashford’s campaign to end child hunger to Grenfell Athletic healing the wounds of a community, the currency of cultural cool carries significant clout.

W Communications Rachel Friend, Scott Dimbleby, and Ian Loughlin, share their approach from an array of Award-winning campaigns, how they work with partners to get to the heart of issues and collaborate with celebrities and cultural activists to build powerful purpose-driven platforms. 

With examples from Unilever, Grenfell, Hey Girl, Children’s Society and CALM, they demonstrate how harnessing cultural authenticity is key to delivering the impact that changes attitudes and changes lives.

W Communications
11:10 - 11:30
Coffee Break
11:30 - 12:00
Creativity for the uncool - making waves in a traditional industry
Creativity is what makes new brands stand out, and what makes heritage brands retain their edge. Whether that’s the creative hustle of early stage companies, or creative campaigns from the big brands at the top (Dove, Nike, Adidas, come to mind), many have proven that creativity remains the path to success, regardless of your industry. 

So, as a marketer in a traditional or mature industry - i.e. insurance, law, or agriculture - who wants to make a splash but understands the nuances of product, stakeholder and brand marketing, how do you exercise creativity within the container of your field? Does Lorne Michaels’ statement hold true, is creativity best exercised with boundaries? 

We speak to communications experts who've been on countless journeys with rebels and titans, to learn why it’s vital to drive creativity to win in a traditional industry - and how it can be done. 

If you are a marketing leader or growth expert, passionate about harnessing the power of PR to build awareness and win the hearts and minds of your customers, this is a must attend.

12:05 - 12:25
Cannes Young PR Lions: Creativity Under Pressure
Gigi Rice and Elle Bellwood, now both of Hope&Glory, fought off competition from 60 other pairs of creatives to represent the UK at the global Cannes Young PR Lions final. They are joined by Julian Boulding, founder of global independent agencies The Network One, to review the winners of the international competition, which is sponsored by ICCO, and talk about their own experiences and creativity under pressure.
12:25 - 13:25
Lunch Break
13:25 - 13:40
The Age of Audacity: How to Unlock the Creative Power of Our New Era
The pandemic has forced all of us to revisit and challenge our assumptions, values and the world as we thought we understood. For the first time we are united globally by one idea; the openness to reassess our lives as we once knew it. The absurd is now interesting. The unachievable is a reality and the rhythm of our lives will forever have a different pace. Now is the time to take advantage of this receptiveness-to-the-absurd to positively impact the future we want in a meaningful way.
WE Communications
13:40 - 14:10
Activist Communications. Woke Washing or Authentic Opportunity?

An exploration of Activist Communications and how brands should be mindful of, reactive to, and engaged in brand and social activism.

Featuring equalities activist Lord Wooley, founder and Director of Operation Black Vote and the former Chair of UK Government’s Race Disparity Unit.

14:15 - 14:35
PR Lions Jury
Join PR Lions jury president Gail Heimann as she recaps the themes from this year's Cannes Lions winners, and discusses the PR industry's performance at the festival.
15:40 - 16:00
Coffee Break
16:00 - 16:30
Re-writing the Retail Rules

The retail sector has been experiencing a blurring between the realms of the physical + digital worlds accelerated by the recent COVID-19-driven consumer demand during lockdowns, as well as new technologies. In parallel – customers are increasingly expecting personalized shopping experiences to be seamlessly integrated into their everyday lives. So what does it take to build brand preference for retailers at a time when everything is just one anonymous click away? As data plays a more active role in online retail experiences, how can communications build confidence in secure transactions? And how can retailers best communicate inclusivity to be welcoming to all shoppers?

Join Lucy Reynolds, Director of Communications, CSR and Sustainability, Boots and Emily Mekstan, Director of Retail & Merchandising Communications, Walgreens, for a discussion with Hill+Knowlton Strategies’ Executive Vice President, Avra Lorrimer on how retail has evolved over the past few years - what will revert, what is forever changed and how creative can help bring shoppers back to the main street/high street post-pandemic.

H+K Strategies
16:35 - 17:05
PR: Stop telling and start selling
People don't ask to be made aware, informed or educated when it comes to a company's products or services. Metrics such as 'awareness', 'education', and 'reputation' are outcomes that matter to you - the business- but are inconsequential to engaging with someone on a day-to-day basis. With so much attention deficit across our society, people navigate their time by focusing on WIIFM. They want to know how their life can be enhanced; made simpler, easier, happier.

During this panel, we discuss how PR needs to shift its focus from broadcasting rational bits of information to selling moments of meaningful benefit. We'll focus on how PR can become an ally of sales and marketing, and how creativity can be harnessed within PR to deliver powerful and persuasive stories that change people's behaviours. The panel will explore why it's time to rise up and redefine the category and put an end to PR that serves nobody but itself.

17:10 - 17:40
Born Creatives
We are now in the era of born PR creatives: not communications professionals who have chosen to become creative specialists as they rise through the agency ranks, or senior ECDs poached from ad agency creative backgrounds, but people entering the industry as PR creative specialists.

But are born creative specialists in PR a good thing? Is experience of dealing directly with journalists and managing accounts in the early years of your career still a requisite for knowing which ideas will fly? Or does the changing landscape of communications – the dominance of social and digital and the blurring between paid, owned and earned – mean that kind of traditional agency grounding is no longer so important? Could having a whole new discipline within PR from the start even help solve PR’s diversity problem by attracting a broader range of more young people into the industry?

And as the new generation of PR creatives beds in, who owns creativity in agencies, now? Can you or should you create a creative culture throughout an agency, or do you need a dedicated ECD and creative department to lead on creativity?