By Suzanne Basra, Content & Internal Communications Manager at Ogilvy UK


What does a global trust deficit mean for brand storytelling? Is it a brand’s role to inform or entertain? Who are consumers turning to and what responsibility does this place on storytellers?

As part of an IAA and euronews panel at Cannes Lions this week, Ogilvy UK CEO Michael Frohlich, joined leading storyshapers from Unilever and NBC News to debate the challenges that civic diversity brings in a distrusting world.

Following the discussion, we caught up with Michael to find out more.

How are audiences consuming stories today?

Through many different channels and formats.

The key is what’s personally relevant to that person - understand that and you unlock the most impactful way to communicate to them.

What does these new consumption habits mean for storytellers?

The rules are the same - make it emotional and personal, but always be clear on what outcome you’re looking for.

With trust as a growing issue, especially in the era of 'fake news', how do you think advertising & the mainstream media are responding to declining trust?

No one channel of communication works, we need to use multiple sources of trusted channels and voices to reinforce our messages and build trust and engagement. 

In a world of algorithm-based news, should storytellers give audiences what they want or what they need?

Both. Because both are valid sales opportunities - you just need to use different types of communications to convert them.

What is the one thing every brand should be doing right now in order to be a good storyteller?   

Be authentic and don’t just tell a story - live your story. 


Follow the action live from Cannes on Twitter & Instagram using  #OgilvyCannes

There's more from Cannes Lions as we catch up with Ogilvy UK's Kevin Chesters following his panel discussion on YouTube and storytelling here.

Also get the low down on Thandie Newton talking diversity at Cannes Lions here.