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YouTube: Damon Wayans Pay-to-Play, Paid Inclusion or Pay-for-Placement?

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At SES NY, John Battelle outted Damon Wayans, Google and YouTube.

Battelle said Wayans spilled the beans on his YouTube deal as a "platinum partner" for WayOutTV.com.

Wayans shared he was guaranteed 60 million impressions by YouTube. Those 60 million impressions -- guaranteed -- sounds very much like the structure of a MySpace-style minimum revenue deal. Plus, Wayans shared his YouTube rev share number. Wow.

Everything advertisers need to know about video search but were afraid to ask.

That officially makes Google a publisher not a technology company, in Battelle's view. The SES crowd didn't argue, though Google's universal search guru, Jack Menzel, product manager, Google Search, said the number may have been an estimate of the minimum number of impressions expected.

In February, Damon Wayans launched WayOutTV.com in collaboration with Google's YouTube. WayOutTV.com features videos produced by stand-up comedians selected by Wayans, the film and TV star.

He was in town promoting his YouTube deal on a panel moderated by Battelle at AdAge's Digital Marketing Conference ("a new crop of stars in town who've grown their celebrity via MySpace pages, YouTube channels and videos gone viral. And now, of course, they're celebrity spokespeople.").

YouTube needs branded entertainment for Google to succeed as a media company. WayOutTV.com is not unlike Will Ferrell's FunnyorDie.com and the lesser known MyDamn-Content.com by Harry Shearer.

film and TV satires shows such as Hollywood Shuffle, I'm Gonna Git YouSucka, and In Living Color, where Jim Carrey and J-Lo launched their careers.

George Alexander, business entertainment columnist at blackenterprise.com noted, "As the Web proves to be a place for more and more content providers to introduce their product to audiences, analysts contend that branding will be the key competitive advantage to an increasingly cluttered marketplace."

Alexander noted because barriers to entry are low, and anyone with a digital video camera, a computer, can upload a video on YouTube, name recognition and quality will determine who wins eyeballs and repeat visitors.

"With the name Wayans, Damon could clearly be way ahead of the pack."

Not to mention starring as YouTube's The 60 Million Impression Man.


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