YouTube buys paid product service FameBit

Google has bought FameBit, a start-up which makes it easier for brands to put their products into videos made by influencers.

FameBit: an influencer marketplace for brands and creators
FameBit: an influencer marketplace for brands and creators

Google has not disclosed the amount it has paid for Los Angeles-based FameBit, but says the deal will help creators make more money. FameBit will remain a standalone operation "for now".

FameBit allows creators with more than 5,000 followers to sign up and take their pick of available sponsorships from the likes of Adidas and L'Oréal. Endorsements start from $100, according to FameBit's website.

As well as making videos for YouTube, FameBit allows creators on Twitter, Instagram, Vine, Tumblr and Facebook to sign up. The deal means Google could benefit financially, even if creators move to its rival platforms.

"We believe that Google’s relationship with brands and YouTube’s partnerships with creators, combined with FameBit’s technology and expertise, will help increase the number of branded content opportunities available, bringing even more revenue into the online video community," said YouTube's vice president for product management Ariel Bardin in a blogpost.

While brands are becoming increasingly interested in sponsorship deals with YouTubers, the space remains something of a Wild West. Influencers were recently warned about "inappropriate" relationships with fans. And trade body ISBA has created a template vlogger contract to help brands negotiate their agreements with influencers. 


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