Brand Buzz Taps McLean

Will lead Bounce alliance

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%%STORYIMAGE_RIGHT%% Brand Buzz, the plucky three-year old unit hatched within one of Madison Avenue's most revered, traditional white-shoe shops, Y&R Advertising, is expanding its expertise.

It has retained as a consultant Stuart McLean, most recently a partner in branded entertainment agency BedellMcLean, to lead and coordinate the partnership between the non-traditional agency and Bounce Event Marketing, offering Brand Buzz clients another communications platform.

"We think clients' appetite for innovation is increasing," said John Partilla, founder and CEO, Brand Buzz. The Bounce partnership, set up late last year, provides an entrée into the entertainment world, while "Stuart, because he has an [ad] agency background and has also done the Hollywood thing…can help lead clients into the young, somewhat unproven arena of branded entertainment."

"My role, to some extent,…is to translate entertainment ideas so they make sense for the brands," said McLean. "But…I'm also there from start to finish to make sure all the pieces fall into place."

%%PULLQUOTE_LEFT%% McLean, 35, spent nearly a decade in account management at Y&R in New York and Chicago, then moved on to J. Walter Thompson. There, he worked with such clients as Kellogg, Molson Breweries, and the Pepsi-Lipton Tea Partnership. In 2000, he moved to Los Angeles, and with partner Seth Bedell, developed entertainment solutions for clients, including beer behemoth Interbrew. He returned to New York City this June after BedellMcLean disbanded.

"There is a great need and opportunity to help brands partner with entertainment in new ways, but you need the resources to get it done," added McLean.

Bounce is one such resource. Its founders, John Cossette and Tim Swift have decades of experience in such large-scale television event productions as The Grammys and in corporate events like the Microsoft Windows 2000 launch. Bounce "helped to interpret a message on stage, but also made sure that the message happened credibly and smoothly," according to Swift. To that end, he brought "Star Trek" star Patrick Stewart on stage to introduce the program and query Bill Gates.

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