National Geographic Assigns Brand Marketing Work to McCann New York After Last Year’s Hit Super Bowl Ad

The agency will focus on brand development

NatGeo's first scripted series stars Geoffrey Rush as Albert Einstein. National Geographic
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National Geographic announced today it has extended its partnership with McCann New York, naming it lead agency for brand marketing as a result of its award-winning Super Bowl 2017 campaign for “Genius,” NatGeo’s first scripted series about Albert Einstein.

McCann will now lead brand development for National Geographic, handling strategy and creative for all of its brand marketing efforts. Previously, NatGeo worked with various agencies, including 72andSunny, on a project by project basis.

“On the heels of the great work McCann did for us earlier this year, we are excited to continue to work with them to translate our iconic brand across multiple platforms for audiences today,” said Jill Cress, National Geographic Partners CMO. “The creativity and passion that McCann brings to the table will help us produce brand defining moments that support our quest to chase the big questions, challenge accepted beliefs and further our knowledge about the world.”

In February, directly after Lady Gaga finished her stunning Super Bowl LI halftime performance, McCann’s TV spot featuring actor Geoffrey Rush as Einstein playing a violin rendition of “Bad Romance” aired. The ad won the coveted Super Clio award, which honors the best Super Bowl commercial.

“It’s an agency’s dream to work with a client whose brand goals are all about pushing boundaries and elevating creative expression,” McCann New York president Devika Bulchandani said in a statement. “Through innovative creative work and collaboration with National Geographic, we will drive greater relevance and build momentum for this iconic brand.”

NatGeo spent around $30 million last year and $14.9 million so far this year, according to Kantar Media. It is unclear how much of its account McCann will control.

@kitten_mouse Lindsay Rittenhouse is a staff writer at Adweek, where she specializes in covering the world of agencies and their clients.