Agency Brief: Eight tips for the calm before the Cannes

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Credit: Illustration by Ad Age

Who's ready?

I'm not! I'm considering running a competitive review for someone who can help me pack 15 dresses and too many shoes in a carry-on, finish scheduling my meetings and give me a manicure on that Delta flight everyone in the industry will be on tomorrow. (You won't miss me -- I'll be the one in a face mask doing a DIY spa night and I'm only sort of kidding about it.) I'll be issuing an RFP shortly.

For those of you who are similarly under-prepared, or need a refresher course, I went to some Cannes experts for last-minute advice.

"Do not get in a pool containing more than five people," Dan Scott-Croxford, managing partner at Stink Studios, says. Wonder how he learned that one.

"For the ladies who want to tear out their hair, have no fear -- if you head into a couple of the cross streets behind Gucci & Dolce, there are some small salons in that area that will give you blowouts, fast and cheap!" says Veronica Beach, David's head of global production. And keep your stuff within reach, she adds: "If you go to the beach after the parties are over and put down your bag, you can count on it getting stolen."

"Tip of my life for a hangover: Oxyboldine -- an effervescent only sold in France," says Carmen Rodriguez, head of account management at David. Also: "Do not over-dress. Flats and sneakers will keep your feet safe while walking up and down the stairs of the Palais or to all the beaches with all activations."

Price Glomski, exec VP at PMG gave his best place to find a cup of French joe: "Sapore di Pane in Marché Forville."

"Don't worry about packing your schedule in advance, don't have fear of missing out, and let opportunities come to you by meeting people and hearing things. You won't believe how much good conversation happens on the Carlton terrace late at night," says Neil Waller, co-founder and CEO of Whalar.

Winston Binch, chief digital officer at Deutsch North America, says "Cannes is an endurance test. Drink a lot of water, exercise daily, and skip the Gutter Bar. Don't try to do everything. Keep it to the essentials and let Cannes happen. Leave time for exploration and serendipity to strike. There's an amazing cross-section of people at the festival. The chance and random encounters help make it such a great event for networking and inspiration. Lastly, don't forget to walk the Palais. Some of the best creative work in the world is on display here. Make sure you leave with new ideas."

Wayne Deakin, exec creative director for Huge EMEA, says "Serendipity is your friend at Cannes and good shit happens to those who go with the vibe. The real secret of Cannes is to not go to try too hard or go too fast. Pace yourself the first couple of days as the week builds." Also: "When you win one of those highly coveted awards, it's important to not leave it behind at a bar after you had one too many. It happens more than you think!"

And, succinctly: "Wear comfortable shoes. Hydrate. Bring blister Band-Aids. Walk the Palais to see the best work. And above all, don't let rosé get the better of you," says Stephanie Fierman, CMO at MediaCom.

But the most important tip: Don't be a stranger. If we haven't met, let's say hello. We can talk shop or you can complain that I never answer your emails -- I really am sorry for the delay!

OK, before you read on for this week's agency news, I wish you all safe travels. And if you're sitting this one out, enjoy the peace and quiet. It won't last long.

They saw a clear winner

Empower, a Cincinnati independent media agency, has added the creative and PR account for OneSight, a global nonprofit that provides vision care and eyewear in the developing world. OneSight, formerly part of Luxottica, still counts the eyewear marketer as its founding global sponsor. OneSight, however, goes beyond Warby Parker's "buy a pair give a pair" concept by providing the eye exams, too. The account is part of a growing list of creative assignments for an agency that now bills itself as "the creative media agency," and has picked up recent creative work from Kao's Cincinnati-based U.S. operations and the TriHealth healthcare network.

My feet can't wait

Advertising Week has announced it's moving this year into a single venue, meaning no more sprinting around Times Square from venue to venue accidentally hitting tourists with your laptop bag the entire week! The new location will be the AMC Loews Lincoln Square 13 at 1998 Broadway. You can even catch an action flick afterward, if agency panels aren't thrilling enough for you. The event will be held October 1 through 4 and features names like P&G chief brand officer Marc Pritchard and Burger King CMO Fernando Machado.

Perpetual pitchapalooza

The World Federation of Advertisers and The Observatory International did a study about the current state of agency rosters at major multinational clients. The study found a whopping 74 percent of brands surveyed were reviewing their agency roster arrangements. The findings are based on responses from 50 multinational marketers representing more than $69 billion in global ad spending.

They should have called them the Eh-ffies

Canada's Cassies Awards, which honor marketing ROI, are joining the global Effie Awards network to become Effie Canada. Effie Worldwide's North American program will merge with the Cassies, with Effie Canada and Effie United States launching in fall 2018.

Tweet of the week

Hair flip.

Contributing: Jack Neff

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