Google To Help Agencies Hook Up With Creators To Develop YouTube Content For Brands

In an apparent effort to help agencies create better video content for their brand clients by making a connection to creators, Google, after a trial with L'Oreal and Code & Theory last year, has launched YouTube Labs. The entity will serve as a linking conduit of sorts between brands, agencies and production talent to produce video content. 

It's a bit of a talent brokerage that extends beyond the usual inner circle of YouTube and blog content creators and hopes to tap a broader swath of creative talent. Google won't take a cut of the negotiated arrangement but will, of course, derive income from the content being placed on its properties. And the arrangement will not preclude brands and agencies taking that content outside the Google ecosystem once it's developed.

Of the pilot project, Code and Theory Group Creative Director Howard Collinge said: "This was a really great collaboration. From the creative side, I think it gave us a lot of freedom. The emphasis was on speed, with the agency going straight to production once the scripts were approved, guided by insights from YouTube creators and what they knew about the market. But we essentially wrote scripts and went and shot them. So we used them as a springboard. We had a lot of creative freedom to do what we thought was the right thing."



Approaching the production process a bit more like the publish-now-edit-later mantra of website and blog content, L-Oreal USA CMO Marie Gulin-Merle said: "It was a fast and furious way of working with one motto: Better done than perfect. It's OK if you don't take another week to polish the content. You put it online and optimize from there and listen to the conversations and feedback from the consumer."

As Google often does, Google President of Client and Agency Relations Kirk Perry downplayed threats to the market, saying: "I don't think we compete in any way, shape or form with the Gen.Videos of the world or the Tongals of the world. We obviously have a little insight on the YouTube business and the creator ecosystem. We also have access to a lot of data and analytics about where consumers are and what they're watching. So we have that unique insight others wouldn't have."

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