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Cannes Lions Special Section

#CannesLions2019: "Reinvent the medium to make the message a winner" - Claudi Potter

The Cannes Lions Festival of Creativity for 2019 kicks off next week, with winners announced at nightly awards from 17 to 21 June. We caught up with this year's SA contingent of judges for a preview of what to expect. Next up, Claudi Potter.
Claudi Potter, creative director at Joe Public United, is serving on this year’s Cannes Lions Direct category, and will judge the Young Lions Digital competition in Cannes.
Claudi Potter, creative director at Joe Public United, is serving on this year’s Cannes Lions Direct category, and will judge the Young Lions Digital competition in Cannes.

Claudi Potter, creative director at Joe Public United, is serving on this year’s Cannes Lions Direct jury, and will also be judging the Young Lions Digital competition in Cannes.

Currently the third-ranked female creative director in Africa and the Middle East according to the latest Loeries Ranking, Potter is passionate about her craft as a writer, with her work having won several local and international copy craft awards.

Here, Potter shares what she’s most looking forward to from this year’s Festival of Creativity, sharing a few of her Cannes Lions-related highlights over the years and what SA judges bring to the global creative mix…

BizcommunityHave you judged at an international award show like Cannes before? What does that add to your judging ability?
I have judged locally, but this is my first time judging at an international award show.

I’m just really honoured to be in the company of the amazing judges from here and abroad, and hoping to learn as much as I can.

BizcommunityShare a few of your favourite Cannes Lions-related moments over the years – either from attending personally or agency winning work-related.
It’s really hard to pick out favourite moments.
The entire festival feels like an old Stuyvesant ad, with all the yachts and the good-looking people, mixed with this deep immersion into the best that the world of advertising and design has to offer.

It’s like being a kid in a candy store, only the candy is Rosé, and the store is a Palais filled with carefully crafted entry boards.My worst experience was spending one-hour watching KK [ed: Kim Kardashian] explaining her input into a fashion game she developed. Highlights include the Radio Awards, where SA features so often.

You stop thinking about your own work and just have that sense of pride and patriotism for about five seconds until envy and competitiveness sets in again!

BizcommunityLove the honesty! What do this year’s 7 SA creatives bring to the global Cannes Lions judging mix?
With three CCOs on the SA panel, there is a whole lot of experience, and some of the judges have judged every award show you can think of.

I also love the diversity of the panel, and of course, it’s always exciting to see that women are being well-represented in our group.

BizcommunityDefinitely. Give us a glimpse of the specific criteria you’ll be looking for in judging this year's entries.
There’s always the “I wish I did that” factor. I also love simplicity, especially for direct. I’ve had to spend quite a bit of time interrogating what qualifies as Direct, and just how many of the metrics involved really reflect the success of a campaign, as the entries are spread across vastly different media and tactics.

Ultimately, it’s about an idea that is completely original and surprising and makes me feel or think about it, long after I saw it for the first time.

BizcommunityWith other international award shows D&AD and the One Show having wrapped up for the year, any predictions of creative trends that are likely to stand out at Cannes Lions 2019?

It’s an ongoing trend, but it seems like we have to reinvent the medium to make the message a winner these days.

Radio is no longer only about a great script, Direct is anything from an email to a hashtag, to a package purposely hand-delivered to the wrong address. But the great ideas remain undeniable.
BizcommunityWhat are you most looking forward to from the Cannes Lions Festival of Creativity 2019?

Being part of the judging panel, meeting creatives from all over, and being amongst a bunch of really clever people and their incredible work. And of course, that Stuyvesant ad feeling (but wearing mom jeans, not a white bikini).

While main judging only takes place in Cannes next week, watch for the SA judges’ specific predictions of the work that will win, later this week!

The Cannes Lions Festival of Creativity runs from 17 to 21 June 2019, with Cinemark – now known as Ster-Kinekor Sales – the local representatives of Cannes Lions for SA. Roving reporter Ann Nurock will be sharing the latest news as it happens, live on the ground in Cannes, so visit our Cannes Lions special section for the latest updates!

About Leigh Andrews

Leigh Andrews AKA the #MilkshakeQueen, is former Editor-in-Chief: Marketing & Media at, with a passion for issues of diversity, inclusion and equality, and of course, gourmet food and drinks! She can be reached on Twitter at @Leigh_Andrews.

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