'Selfies Are the New Autographs,' Says Cameo CEO

August 10, 2018

By Michael Teich

For the right price, users can get a video shout-out from celebrities – actress Bella Thorne and NFL Hall of Famer Terrell Owens, to name a couple – through app Cameo.

"Selfies are the new autograph," Cameo's CEO, Steven Galanis, said Friday in an interview on Cheddar. "We thought the most personalized, authentic thing you can do with someone that's not there is getting them to say something to you."

Through the marketplace app, fans can request a message of their own devising that a celebrity can either consent or decline to read on camera.

The platform ー which launched in April ー has facilitated 52,000 videos and its talent count has grown to over 3,000, Galanis said. The most expensive shout-out on Cameo costs $1,000, but Galanis said the average video is $40.

Influencers are capitalizing on their popularity with ad dollars from brands eager to reach social media. Total ad spend on influencer marketing will jump from $5 billion this year to $10 billion in the next five years, according to marketing firm Mediakix.

But now, actors, athletes, musicians, and social media personalities can get paid directly from their fans. Galanis said his company takes a 25 percent cut, but the talent sets his or her own price.

"We always tell talent to optimize for amount of fans touched versus price," Galanis said.

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