The World Advertising Research Center (WARC) – Creative 100 ranking, the ultimate independent benchmark for marketing that celebrates excellence in creativity, was published last week. We can be very proud of Havas’s result! Dare! spoke to our very own creative gurus, Jacques Séguéla and Stéphane Xiberras, to find out more.
How important is the WARC ranking in the world of creativity?
Every profession has its game master and its forge master. In ours, it’s WARC: intractable, immutable, inescapable.
WARC aggregates the results of major international competitions to produce a ranking. More so than any perceptions, impressions and PR pushes for a particular campaign or agency, WARC is an unerring indicator of creative performance in our industry.
The 2022 edition rewards all the efforts made through our Award Policy and, most of all, for the high standards pursued by our talents in every corner of the globe. And what is so fantastic is that never have we had so many agencies reaping WARC awards, from so many different countries and continents. Havas Creative features in 6th place in the ‘Top Agency Networks’ ranking and BETC Paris 3rd in the ‘Top Agencies’.
Which of the ranked campaigns stood out the most to you and why?
The Lost Class [ed. by Leo Burnett] is without a doubt the most powerful and chilling campaign of the entire year. This is the kind of campaign that makes you want to go into advertising or, if you’re there already, makes you want to do it even better. Another sensational campaign is Adidas (Beyond the Surface – Liquid Billboard from Havas Middle East, the world’s 7th most awarded campaign for creativity) and just as relevant but in a different genre is Outlaw Runners (BETC Paris, 13th place).
As a general rule, the campaigns that are internationally recognised in this type of ranking are increasingly engaging with social issues. Do you think creativity alone is no longer enough?
It is well established by now (all the studies in this field concur) that an award-winning campaign wields five to seven times more image and sales effectiveness than a non-awarded campaign. The flame of creativity is by no means burning low.
As regards to the engagement you mention, our industry is a transformational force in society. This is its great power and its great responsibility. The idea is not new. Bill Bernbach said it a long time ago: “All of us who professionally use the mass media are the shapers of society. We can vulgarise that society. We can brutalise it. Or we can help lift it onto a higher level.”
When it comes to the brands, we see that, one after another, companies are taking up causes great and small. It is no longer only about use and image, there is now an added social value. And it works. The latest Fortune 100 list shows that the 50 most responsible firms all reported stronger business performance.
Should creativity be meaningful to win awards?
It’s our greatest weapon in combatting the waste that lurks in the no man’s land of the social media sewers. But meaningful without “creativity-ful” loses its impact. Advertising is, always has been and always will be about having an idea.