Brand Experience & Activation Lions

The Brand Experience & Activation Lions celebrate creative, comprehensive brand building through the next level use of experience design, activation, immersive, retail and 360° customer engagement.

Entries should demonstrate how the customer journey, experience of the brand and optimisation of every touch point led to increased brand affinity and commercial success. A number of criteria will be considered during judging and weighted as follows: 20% Idea, 20% strategy, 30% execution, 30% results.

Brand Experience & Activation Lions Sections

  • A. Brand Experience & Activation: Sectors

    The same entry can be submitted only once in this section.

    • A01 Food & Drink

      All food and drinks.

    • A02 Other FMCG

      Beauty, cleaning products, other household goods, other FMCG.

    • A03 Healthcare

      Pharma, OTC drugs, wellness.

    • A04 Consumer Durables

      Technology, homewares, furniture and lighting, toys, fashion, home appliances, other durables.

    • A05 Automotive

      Vehicles, other automotive.

    • A06 Retail

      Retail, eCommerce, restaurants, fast food.

    • A07 Travel

      Travel, tourism, transport.

    • A08 Leisure

      Live events, museums & galleries, gambling, sports, gaming, other recreation.

    • A09 Media / Entertainment

      Music, film, television, publications & media, books, news, digital platforms, other media.

    • A10 Consumer Services / Business to Business

      Legal, financial, B2B technology, consultancies & professional services, other business services, internal & corporate comms.

    • A11 Not-for-profit / Charity / Government

      Government, public information, other not-for-profit, military, charities, non-profit.

    • A12 Corporate Social Responsibility (CSR) / Corporate Image

      Non-product based social responsibility campaigns aimed to address social, ethical and environmental issues. Corporate Image campaigns including event sponsorship to build the image/ raise the profile/ shape the perceptions of a brand.

  • B. Touchpoints & Technology

    In these categories work will be judged on the use of technology and multiple touchpoints across a brand experience or activation.

    • B01 Social Engagement & Integration for Live Experience

      Entries in this category should demonstrate how social media was integrated to enhance a live experience or activation.

    • B02 Use of Mobile

      Entries in this category must describe how a mobile app, portable device or mobile technology created or enhanced the interaction with customers at a brand experience or activation.

    • B03 Use of Website / Microsites New!

      Entries into this category must outline how a branded website or microsite has driven or increased engagement with new or existing customers and increased overall brand experience or activation.

    • B04 New Realities & Voice-activation New!

      The creative application of Augmented Reality, Virtual Reality, Mixed Reality or voice activation in a brand experience or activation.

    • B05 Branded Games New!

      Entries into this category will demonstrate how their branded game appealed to the target audience and drove customer engagement while building a positive brand experience through gaming content. Both online and mobile games and apps are eligible in this category.

    • B06 Digital Installations

      Immersive large or small scale digital experiences and events which are set up to engage relationships with consumers. This can include, but is not limited to VR/AR installations, motion chairs, multi-screen and multi-dimensional experiences.

    • B07 Tangible & Spatial Technology

      Any brand experience or activation creating a space or using a more permanent spatial feature to drive customer engagement. This can include exhibitions, fairs, trade shows, signage.

    • B08 Interactive Brand Video

      The creative use of digital footage or online video to create or enhance a brand experience or activation.

    • B09 Tech-led Brand Experience

      Entries in this category should demonstrate how the use of new tech or existing tech, used in a new way, enhanced a brand experience or activation.

    • B10 Cross-platform Digital Experience

      Creation of cross-platform digital content that develops or enhances a brand experience. Entries will need to describe the various digital platforms and devices used to develop and amplify meaningful consumer engagement. This can include but is not limited to desktop, mobile, wearable technology, outdoor installations, billboards, retail experiences.

  • C. Retail Experience & Activation

    Entries in these categories must focus on Brand Experience and Activations that took place within a retail environment.

    • C01 Customer Retail / In-store Experience

      In-store and retail location activities including product launches/activations, demonstrations, sampling activities and pop-ups that engage and guide shoppers on all channels of their path to purchase.

    • C02 Retail Promotions & Competitions

      Online or offline promotional competitions or incentives used to drive customer engagement with a brand. This may include but is not limited to social media competitions, offline live games, in-store promotional activations.

    • C03 Loyalty Programmes New!

      Entries into this category must outline how they have pushed boundaries and demonstrated outstanding loyalty programme innovation in a campaign, to strengthen relationships with customers and increase brand loyalty and awareness.

    • C04 End to End Customer Journey New!

      Celebrating the successful strategic planning of the entire customer journey; following the consumer from initial awareness of a product/service through to post-purchase customer service & communications.

  • D. Excellence in Brand Experience & Activation

    These categories focus on the strategic planning and execution of brand experience or activation campaigns.

    • D01 Live Brand Experience or Activation New!

      Any live brand experience or activation that was held at a consumer or business event. Including installations, product demos, trade shows, expos & pop-ups.

    • D02 Guerilla Marketing & Stunts New!

      Any brand activation using guerrilla marketing, short/one-off live executions, street teams, publicity stunts and street stunts to drive customer engagement.

    • D03 Brand-owned Experiences

      Any live experience/activation event that is brand specific and stand-alone. Including permanent installations, pop-ups which are not part of a wider event, venue takeovers and brand-owned music festivals/concerts.

    • D04 Sponsorship & Brand Partnership

      This category recognises partnerships/sponsorships that create immediate and long term brand experiences or activations. Entries will be judged on how effective the partnership/sponsorship was.

    • D05 Launch / Re-launch

      Brand experiences or activations created to launch or re-launch a brand, product or service.

    • D06 360 Integrated Brand Experience New!

      Experiences that successfully carry a brand’s message across multiple platforms both online and offline. Entries must demonstrate how content featuring a brand’s message, product or service has been seamlessly implemented on various platforms to continue and amplify meaningful consumers’ experience and engagement.

  • E. Culture & Context

    • E01 Local Brand New!

      Campaigns for brands distributed in a single locality or market which resonated with a specific target audience.

    • E02 Challenger Brand New!

      Celebrating the success of disruptive, game-changing work for an aspiring brand that uses progressive thinking and innovative creativity to challenge the status quo.

    • E03 Single-market Campaign New!

      Campaigns that aired or ran in a single country / region / market. Entries should describe how the campaign was designed for the specific target market.

    • E04 Social Behaviour & Cultural Insight New!

      Campaigns inspired by a specific audience / community, hinging on identifiable social behaviour or cultural insights.

    • E05 Breakthrough on a Budget New!

      Strategic and creative use of modest budgets and/or resources to create maximum impact.

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The Brand Experience & Activation Lions President's Message

Jaime Mandelbaum President

Chief Creative Officer, VLMY&R Europe, VMLY&R

"Our surroundings have shaped us, family, friends, coworkers, culture, travels, all those interactions have helped define us as a person.

Brands used to behave like buildings with no surrounding. They talked at people. They were one dimensional. But no one wants to have a conversion with a building.

So brands are learning to behave in a more personable manner, and our opinion of a brand is being shaped by all the new dimensions, interactions, and connection points they offer people.

To be interested in them, to care about the things and people they care about, to invest in the wellbeing of their community, their city, their country and to be concerned for the planet we inhabit, are some of the things people expect from brands today.

Very much like a person and getting to know another person.

We are here to identify and reward the brands and agencies that shine a light into the possibilities ahead of a world powered by Connected Experiences - not just for brands but for companies and people.

Brands and agencies that create riveting experiences in the spaces and places where people already are that have entertaining, useful, and empathetic conversations across touchpoints, that move us emotionally and that are disproportionately memorable in a world where everyone is fighting to get our attention because this is when a true connection happens."

The Brand Experience & Activation Lions Jury

Jaime Mandelbaum Jury President

Chief Creative Officer

Jaime Mandelbaum has worked across three continents with brands like Adidas, Absolut Vodka, Bel, BBC, BMW, Chanel, Coca-Cola, Danone, Erste Bank, Forbes, Harley Davidson, ING, Lavazza, LG, Marks & Spencer, Nike, Playstation, Volvic and Vodafone. Born and raised in São Paulo he's the Chief Creative Officer of VMLY&R Europe where he's responsible for overseeing the creative product of the network across all of its European offices, he held the same role at Y&R and was instrumental in driving the award-winning work when Y&R was named EMEA regional network of the year at Cannes 2017. Prior to that he was responsible for Central and Eastern Europe, when Y&R was also the most-awarded network in that region at Cannes Lions 2014 and 2015.

He is a speaker at innovation and creativity events globally and has been a jury member in all major advertising festivals, in 2018 he was named to the Golden Drum Hall of Fame, his works have been awarded at Cannes Lions, ADC New York, The One Show, D&AD, Clios, London International, Eurobest, NY Festivals and ADC Europe.
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Arina Avdeeva

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Christie Cooper

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Dany Minaker Awarding Jury

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Edson Athaíde

CEO and Creative Director
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Emma De La Fosse Awarding Jury

Chief Creative Officer


Erik Falke

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Flip Sorée

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Hyo-Jin Kim

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Janne Brenda Lyso

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Jolien Tuyteleers

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Katja Behnke

Creative Director
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Khalid Osman

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Marcelo Lenhard Awarding Jury



Marie Claire Maalouf

Creative Director
Impact BBDO
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Mario Lagos

Executive Creative Director
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Marta Fraczek

Associate Creative Director
Saatchi & Saatchi Poland


Mauricio Fernandez Maldonado Cánepa

Managing Director


Nicola Garrett

Creative Director
South Africa


Noritaka Kobuse

Creative Director


Pedro Gallardo Awarding Jury

Managing Director & Digital Experience Director
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Sandipan Bhattacharyya

Chief Creative Officer
Grey India


Sebastian Arrechedera

Creative Chairman
AC mcgarrybowen


Sophia Lindholm Awarding Jury

Art Director
Forsman & Bodenfors


Stephanie Lang

Executive Creative Director
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Thomas Murphy Awarding Jury

Chief Creative Officer
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Valerie Madon Awarding Jury

Chief Creative Officer
Havas Group Singapore
South East Asia


Youri Guerassimov Awarding Jury

Executive Creative Director


Past winners of the Brand Experience & Activation Lions

Today at Apple

2018 · Apple for Apple


The Apple Store has always been about more than selling products. Its purpose is to enrich the lives of each and every person who visits them. To help people go further with Apple technology and to strengthen the bond between the stores and the community, Apple created educational experiences designed around meaningful human interactions. Today at Apple is daily programming to help people take their creativity further.

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