Sally O’Dowd has helped lead communications efforts at six editors of the Cannes Lions Festival of Creativity for agencies Arc Worldwide, Leo Burnett, Razorfish, MSLGROUP, DiGennaro Communications and Tremor Video.  This post was written by Hannah Bawden while they were both at MSLGROUP. It was originally published here

–by Hannah Bawden

“Hello ladies, look at your man, now back to me, now back at your man, now back to me.”

Sound familiar? That’s not surprising considering this particular Old Spice advert has been viewed 33,310,707 times on YouTube – Impressive considering that just 18 months ago, Old Spice was on the brink of collapse. A series of adverts for the P&G-owned fragrance brand, which featured Isaiah Mustafa, increased sales and revived brand awareness dramatically; sales of Old Spice Body Wash rose by 162% in eight months.

Weiden & Kennedy, the creative agency leading the campaign, leveraged the power of social networks, asking Old Spice followers on Twitter and Facebook, as well as users on Reddit and Digg, to submit questions for the Old Spice man. Celebrities such as Alyssa Milano, Ashton Kutcher, Rose McGowan and Christine Applegate even got involved.

Here at the 2011 Cannes Lions Festival of Creativity, YouTube wanted to go one step further, giving festival delegates the chance to star in their personal remake of the Old Spice and other commercials.  Sally O’Dowd, engagement editor in the Paris office of MSLGROUP, took the plunge. It was all part of our larger efforts at Cannes this year, namely the launch of Cannes Centrale, our conversation platform capturing the trends, ideas, fun and colour that make up the festival. (Our first blog post about Cannes Centrale, featuring Tim Siedell, considered one of the funniest people on Twitter, can be found here.)

Our Old Spice remake was a bit surreal and kitsch, as these videos and photos demonstrate:


The final “produced” result:

A couple photos to commemorate the day:

MSLGROUP Germany's Andre Fertich and I ham it up at the YouTube kiosk.

Thank you, YouTube, for being such a creative and engaging part of the Lions festival!

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