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Storyboard18 | Watch Volodymyr Zelenskyy’s message to the ad community at Cannes Lions

Ukraine President Volodymyr Zelenskyy in a video spoke to the advertising and marketing fraternity at Cannes Lions about the role of the community and creativity in winning the war

June 21, 2022 / 10:44 AM IST

Brands need a purpose, especially in unprecedented times. At the 2022 edition of Cannes Lions International Festival of Creativity, Ukrainian president Volodymyr Zelenskyy through a video message addressed the advertising and marketing community, which gathered after a two-year hiatus to celebrate creativity. His video message was a reminder for everyone working in the communication space to have a single strategy i.e. purpose.

In his virtual address, Zelenskyy’s spoke about the ongoing war situation and shared a lesson for everyone in the communication world.  “The end of this war and its circumstances depend on the world’s attachment. And that is why I need allies. We need people like you,” he said.

Zelenskyy went on to call the Cannes Lions attendees the ‘most creative people in the world’.  According to him, the creative community through its cutting-edge work – like refugee flag or the ALS ice bucket challenge or the rivers of light – has time and again through “words and images” reminded that purpose-led advertising reaches “the depths of the human soul.”

“You make people talk about issues everyone would otherwise overlook,” he said.


Zelenskyy expressed his faith in the attendees of the festival. “I am sure you all will do a lot more to promote Ukrainian bravery. Because, we are fighting not just for our own freedom, but for the freedom of the entire democratic world.”

The power of human creativity is greater than the power of the nuclear state that is stuck in the past, the Ukrainian President believes. “Speaking of Ukraine, don’t let the world switch to something else. The world must remember that Ukraine is fighting for freedom, and this fight must end in our victory as soon as possible. Your ever success will mean saving thousands of lives,” he concluded.

The video was played during the 'Creativity Under Bombs' session where Ukrainian creative leaders took to the stage.
Kashmeera Sambamurthy
first published: Jun 21, 2022 10:44 am
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