Cannes First-Timers Share Tips
We’ve mostly recovered from the jet lag but are still feeling the inspiration of attending the 2012 Cannes International Festival of Creativity. Seven members, including DGC Founder Sam DiGennaro and myself, attended the festival this year, five for the first time:
Kendra Peavy, general manager, director of development
Erin Donahue, senior account director
Megan McIlroy, senior account director
Claire Eisenberg, senior account executive
Michael Murray, senior account executive
Here is a round-up of our first-timers’ tips:
- Confirm. Confirm. Confirm. When scheduling interviews, make sure the reporters are going to be there. If they say they will do an 8 am interview, will they really be there after a night at The Gutter Bar? Best to confirm at 7 am that morning. Also, scope out the location of interviews prior to their taking place so that you know exactly where you are going. And remember: PR people always have to be on time, Gutter Bar or not!
- Technology and social media. Make sure your team has all the necessary tools to stay connected: my-fi (which makes wi-fi portable and shareable with colleagues), passwords to all social media accounts, knowledge of which hashtags to use, and Hootsuite and/or Tweetdeck to monitor social activity. Arrange all this prior to Cannes so that you can get content out the door as soon as you land.
- Protect your feet and skin. You walk all day, and all night long. It is a marathon, not a sprint, and you need comfortable shoes. If you burn easily, wear sunscreen and possibly a hat. When you are not inside listening to seminars, you are under the hot sun, which does not go down until 8 pm or so.
- The right attitude. There is time and then there is Cannes time. You’re working, networking and socializing at least 16 hours a day. Some of your best-laid plans don’t work out, but then you are pleasantly surprised by a spontaneous happening that works your way. You work hard and play hard, and as soon as you have finished one meeting, you are on to the next. As Erin says, Cannes is not for people who get agitated easily.
Check out the following videos for more personality and counsel for maximizing your professional time at the Lions Festival: