Update (a few hours later): Posted some details on Brands in Games but there isn't much to report yet. Leo's office is just a tree and BBH's island is still locked.
More details to come about Leo Burnett's (see news in Brand Republic and AdAge) and Bartle Bogle Hegarty's (news on 3pointD) plans to open offices in Second Life, but I thought this article from Independent captures at least half of the collective mood:
The business loves a new consumer phenomenon that it can use to pep up its PowerPoint presentations and persuade clients that it has its collective finger on the pulse of the nation's obsessions. So all over town "YouTube", "MySpace" and "Second Life" are being artfully-casually dropped into conversations about brand communications strategy.
Following hot on the heels of Adidas, which recently became one of the first global brands to create a presence in the online virtual reality world, Leo Burnett has now set up shop in Second Life with a virtual agency - the Leo Ideas Hub. The idea is to create a global creative community where creative ideas can be shared and briefs honed. It's a neat alternative to the usual company intranet and gives Burnett the option to leverage any commercial opportunities that might come out of the Second Life economy.
But, much, much more than that, it's a good exercise in public relations. Several ad agencies in town have been scrambling to get their own virtual agency up and running, thereby polishing their cool, cutting-edge credentials. That the otherwise rather grey and unexciting Leo Burnett should beat them to it must be deeply frustrating. The rather cooler Bartle Bogle Hegarty was left trailing in the wake when it unveiled its own Second Life virtual agency a few days later."
Besides, YesButNoButYes went into SL and found an avatar named Leo Burnett who is a member of a BDSM community. As the blog says, "Note to agencies and brands - securing your own domain name was just the beginning. Maybe you also think about securing your avatar name."