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Cannes 2019: Storytelling to Storydoing

Cannes 2019: Storytelling to Storydoing

Danielle Smith

Danielle Smith

June 18, 2019

Havas Media and Puma move beyond marketing to bring stories to life with Big Sean.

"Storydoing for us is about behaving authentically and being true to the brand that we are."

There was a cool breeze blowing off the Cannes beach across the Terrace stage as the Storydoing panel began yesterday. Havas Media Group’s Global Chief Strategy Officer Greg James walked on stage with Adam Petrick, Director of Brand and Marketing for PUMA, and Big Sean, the rapper and entrepreneur. The three quickly got down to business: chatting about Big Sean’s suit.

“I went a little overboard on the suit today,” he said. “I’m wearing enough suit for the three of us.

PUMA, one of the world’s leading sports footwear, apparel and accessories brands, began working with Big Sean in March of 2017, and launched his debut collection last year.

Successful influencer marketing and brand partnerships are a difficult thing to tackle, especially when “Generation Hustle,” PUMA’s key audience, can smell inauthentic, bought placement from a mile away.

“Storydoing for us is about behaving authentically and being true to the brand that we are,” said Petrick.

With James serving as moderator, Petrick and Big Sean shared anecdotes and insights from their collaborative work, and what they see happening in the industry and culture more broadly.

“It’s about doing things and allowing other people to embrace that in their own meaningful way,” said Petrick. “We don’t own the brand. The consumer owns the brand. Thats what doing and acting is all about. Creating with our brand in a remixed way.”

"Brands like PUMA, when they take a chance with people who are heartfelt and authentic, then they are the culture."

Big Sean reflected on his Detroit roots, his formative years traveling and experiencing fame, and his father’s influence on his style—all of which, he said, laddered up to and informed his partnership with PUMA.

“You never want to get to the end of your life and think I could’ve done that or I should’ve done that,” he said. “I have that same mentality with my music and my style.”

In his partnership with PUMA, Big Sean has been able to push boundaries and live out the experience of designing, directing and shooting campaigns he never dreamed possible.

At Cannes Lions, and in the advertising industry in general, it’s often said that creative and analytics are pitted against each other. Which prompted James to ask how we can create an environment where creativity and meaningful contributions to brand and culture can thrive, while still pushing for business goals and necessary metrics. Big Sean said he’s learned that “it’s all about balance.”

“If it’s crazy for the sake of crazy it lacks meaning,” added Petrick. “We cannot get hung up on focusing on only the amplification. If we do that we miss the meaning of the moment.”

Big Sean closed the panel by discussing his appreciation for PUMA and admiration for Petrick.

“Brands like PUMA, when they take a chance with people who are heartfelt and authentic, then they are the culture,” he said.

"Storydoing for us is about behaving authentically and being true to the brand that we are."

There was a cool breeze blowing off the Cannes beach across the Terrace stage as the Storydoing panel began yesterday. Havas Media Group’s Global Chief Strategy Officer Greg James walked on stage with Adam Petrick, Director of Brand and Marketing for PUMA, and Big Sean, the rapper and entrepreneur. The three quickly got down to business: chatting about Big Sean’s suit.

“I went a little overboard on the suit today,” he said. “I’m wearing enough suit for the three of us.

PUMA, one of the world’s leading sports footwear, apparel and accessories brands, began working with Big Sean in March of 2017, and launched his debut collection last year.

Successful influencer marketing and brand partnerships are a difficult thing to tackle, especially when “Generation Hustle,” PUMA’s key audience, can smell inauthentic, bought placement from a mile away.

“Storydoing for us is about behaving authentically and being true to the brand that we are,” said Petrick.

With James serving as moderator, Petrick and Big Sean shared anecdotes and insights from their collaborative work, and what they see happening in the industry and culture more broadly.

“It’s about doing things and allowing other people to embrace that in their own meaningful way,” said Petrick. “We don’t own the brand. The consumer owns the brand. Thats what doing and acting is all about. Creating with our brand in a remixed way.”

"Brands like PUMA, when they take a chance with people who are heartfelt and authentic, then they are the culture."

Big Sean reflected on his Detroit roots, his formative years traveling and experiencing fame, and his father’s influence on his style—all of which, he said, laddered up to and informed his partnership with PUMA.

“You never want to get to the end of your life and think I could’ve done that or I should’ve done that,” he said. “I have that same mentality with my music and my style.”

In his partnership with PUMA, Big Sean has been able to push boundaries and live out the experience of designing, directing and shooting campaigns he never dreamed possible.

At Cannes Lions, and in the advertising industry in general, it’s often said that creative and analytics are pitted against each other. Which prompted James to ask how we can create an environment where creativity and meaningful contributions to brand and culture can thrive, while still pushing for business goals and necessary metrics. Big Sean said he’s learned that “it’s all about balance.”

“If it’s crazy for the sake of crazy it lacks meaning,” added Petrick. “We cannot get hung up on focusing on only the amplification. If we do that we miss the meaning of the moment.”

Big Sean closed the panel by discussing his appreciation for PUMA and admiration for Petrick.

“Brands like PUMA, when they take a chance with people who are heartfelt and authentic, then they are the culture,” he said.

Danielle Smith is the Communications Manager of Havas Group. She’s believes every meal can be tacos if you have tortillas and the heart to try.

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