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Tanya Burr’s lip gloss and nail polish line is available at Superdrug; Pixiwoo have the number one make-up brush brand in Britain and the fastest growing one in America; and Zoella has recently signed a two-book fiction deal with Penguin.
‘Writing is a passion of mine,’ she says, ‘so when they asked me if I had ever wanted to write a book I said, “Yes, that’s my dream.” It’s the most exciting thing I’ve done so far.’ Her first novel, Girl Online, will be on sale in every English-speaking country in the world on November 25.
‘If a commercial third party approached and offered the world in terms of money, you wouldn’t find many of them would take that deal if it meant damaging their relationship with their viewers. If you talked to any of them they would say the same.’ Along with the money and the screaming fans come downsides, as with any kind of fame.
While being asked for a picture in the street can be exciting, followers turning up at your house expecting a chat is a little daunting.
Smales says he and his team of 12 ‘talent managers’ act as facilitators, fielding approaches from companies such as Unilever, negotiating contracts, organising publicity and sorting out the logistics of the vloggers’ schedules.
But he insists that it is not about making a fast buck and that his team works closely with each artist and only on collaborations that make strategic sense.
It is all pretty impressive for a few kids who started making videos for fun in their bedrooms. Media interest in the vlogging phenomenon has tended to focus on how much the big names are worth.
‘We try to make the most of what they have on You Tube while planting seeds for the future.’ But for some of Gleam’s stars those seeds have already borne fruit.In fact, though she may be the queen bee statistically, she is just one of a crop of British video bloggers (vloggers) who make a living out of posting short films to the online video portal.