Cannes Panel 2018

#SeeHer was a major presence at the Cannes Lions International Festival of Creativity last week, arguably the most influential annual confluence of the marketing, technology, and content industries in the world.

“Marketers Push Their Gender-Equality Efforts Out onto the Cannes Stage,” heralded Advertising Age. “ANA Takes Vow at Cannes to Erase Gender Stereotypes at Cannes,” added Adweek.

In all, a commanding 10.6 million hashtag impressions for #SeeHer were generated from the movement’s starring role in the South of France.

On the Palais Main Stage, #SeeHer leaders Antonio Lucio, global chief marketing and communications officer for HP, and Marc Pritchard, global chief brand officer for Procter & Gamble, emphasized their support for the movement in presentations.

Also in Cannes, #SeeHer unveiled #WriteHerRight, a platform to fuel discourse on gender inequality in storytelling with showrunners, actors, and network executives—putting the issue in front of those who can facilitate change. Read more here.

The highlight of #SeeHer’s Cannes sojourn was a terrific panel with “Visionary CMOs” talking about their efforts to achieve full gender equality in their content, companies, and their agencies. In fact, AT&T Chief Brand Officer Fiona Carter told the group that “We are pledging to have 100% gender equal advertising by the end of 2018.”

Kicking off the panel was #SeeHer Advisory Board Member and award-winning journalist Katie Couric, who urged the packed crowd to keep the momentum going. She said, “The images we see shape how we see ourselves and envision our future. They can unleash our potential or throw cold water on our ambitions.”

Moderated by TFQ CEO, #SeeHer co-founder Shelley Zalis, the #SeeHer CMO panel included a Who’s Who of marketing powerhouses representing a combined $35 billion in media spend. Panelists were: Fiona Carter, AT&T; Marc Pritchard, P&G; Alison Lewis, Johnson & Johnson; Antonio Lucio, HP; Kristin Lemkau, JPMorgan; Keith Weed, Unilever; Nadine McHugh, L’Oréal USA; and Raja Rajamannar, Mastercard.

The one-hour discussion ranged far and wide, from specific initiatives at their companies, to results using its gender-equality research metric GEM®™ to their efforts to achieve full gender equality in their organizations, and news of the introduction of the methodology into 11 countries and testing of a forthcoming multicultural metric to be used in tandem with GEM®™ scoring. Watch it here.

The panel also talked about their ongoing and deepening efforts to enlist their agencies in the pursuit of gender equality. “I am very proud to say that when you set gender diversity goals, the agencies will achieve it,” declared panelist Alison Lewis, J&J chief marketing officer.

“Two years ago [when #SeeHer launched], half of all the ads on TV portrayed women negatively,” said #SeeHer chair Stephen Quinn. “Two years later, mostly in the last six months, we’ve seen that number move to 70 percent positive, 30 percent negative.”

Clearly, the passion and commitment of #SeeHer members and supporters has paid off as the movement grows and spreads around the world. “We are 70% women in the U.S., and the women in this company know this is something we’re behind, and it’s made a difference,” said Nadine McHugh, L’Oréal USA.