Brief: Use the Cannes Lions Festival to position Google as an open, strategic and creative partner to the advertising community. Create unique experiences that build a buzz at the festival. Showcase Google’s latest innovations and ensure the space functions as a place where relationships with key global customers can be fostered and developed.

Our audience insight: “I’m bored of all the dry, sales-driven waffle in the Festival Palais. I’m looking for an altogether more inspiring experience.”

Activation: The Creative Sandbox, an innovative double-tiered tented structure on the Gray D’Albion beach complete with extensive outdoor environment, beach bar and YouTube-branded staging area.

Complimentary wi-fi was available throughout, along with free yoga sessions, smoothies, sun-loungers and evening cocktails.

Delegates could engage in playful, light-hearted product demonstrations such as printing off personalised Android beach towels, playing racing games using connected devices and sending virtual kisses through Google’s partnership with Burberry.

At every opportunity we found ways to use the Sandbox to engage key Google stakeholders. Events included lightning talks from industry gurus such as TED, AKQA and Ogilvy & Mather, an evening party headlined by Tinie Tempah and rising DJ star Goldierocks, and a fine dining experience for Google’s most important global executive customers hosted by Michelin-starred chef Tom Kitchin.


  • 5,387 delegates visited the Creative Sandbox over the course of the week (an increase of nearly 20% on the previous year)
  • 654 photos were posted on Instagram and Foursquare using the Google Creative Sandbox Beach location or tagged with #google
  • 737 delegates printed their own personalised Android beach towel
  • 44 different events were hosted in the Sandbox in just five days
  • Over 700 delegates attended the daily lightning talks


@adenhepburn (to 18,420 followers): At Google Beach waiting for a drink. Killer setup : )

@georgeprest (to 1,159 followers): #googlecannes getting it so right here. Open, generous, adding value.


“Google’s presence was helpful/fun/thought-provoking all at the same time. You nailed it.” Tom Bazeley, Managing Director, Lean Mean Fighting Machine

“The Google Sandbox rocked! It was an hugely inspirational and fun environment. Thank you for the thyme cocktails, great wifi, glowsticks and good times!” Ben Bilboul, CEO, Karmarama

“Google really was the standout. The Creative Sandbox was incredibly well put together, proving the company’s status as ‘engineers’ rather than simple search-engine monkeys.” Tom Wong, Development Director, TBWA\London