The 66th annual Cannes Lions Festival of Creativity took place once again in the famous French Riviera, delivering a more inclusive, diverse and enlightening experience than ever before.

From developments and challenges surrounding the likes of Facebook and Google to conversations around consumer advertising, brand safety and fraud; we asked a handful of tech-focused experts on the top trends from Cannes Lions as this year’s event comes to a close.

Steffen Svartberg, CEO and co-founder, Cavai

“Cannes Lions has come at a time when there the circle of mistrust is at its highest and consumer trust in advertisers is at its lowest ebb for 60 years. Conversations on the yachts, the panels and in the Palais talked about the need to reestablish trust and CMOs need to prioritise emotional considerations and customers need for 1.2.1 contact. The rapid rise of chatbots, voicebots and chatvertising is expected to provide a solution to help customers buy, interact and respond to advertising. Consumer first is a message that has resonated through every conversation. Let’s see if it now follows through back in London.”

Jenny Stanley, managing director and founder, Appetite Creative Solutions

“It is interesting to see the evolution of Cannes and to note that Google and Microsoft have minimal to no presence here this year. What we also noted was that the theme of technology enabling creativity has been reversed and is now creativity enabling technology. This is no doubt driven by more tech brands than ever are getting involved in the creative space. What is true of Cannes 2019 is that creative is leading the conversation.”

Mattias Spetz, MD EMEA and co-founder, Channel Factory  

“The circle of mistrust is at its highest level and what is clear throughout our conversations in Cannes is that brand safety is not nice to have. It is a must-have. There is a feeling of scepticism around ‘best endeavours’ approach to brand safety. This has been fuelled by bad actor stories and issues around data and given that a brands’ reputation can be irreversibly damaged if you get it wrong, it’s time to act, not talk.”

Julia Smith, director of communications, Impact

“Cannes 2019 didn’t disappoint on so many levels: the bars, beaches and parties all provided the right backdrop for business to be done and the conversations were largely positive. Fraud and brand safety reared its head although Google and Facebook were quick to sidestep questions on this during their discussions; except in reiterating their conviction to fight fraud. What was being discussed was the real world consequences that fraudsters are faced with now and that the real threat of litigation combined with tech to prevent it in the first place, is taking effect? Damon Reeve, Ozone talked at the TAG/ Smart+ panel about the need for marketers to use the tools and capabilities that are right in front of them. Don’t just talk about it, do it seemed to be the message on this topic and in general at Cannes this year.”

If you were at Cannes Lions 2019, let us know your key takeaways in the comments below.