Welcome to TopBuzz Creator Spotlight, where we’ll be profiling a handful of notable creators who are expanding their distribution prospects onto TopBuzz — a two-year-old content aggregation app owned by Chinese mobile giant Bytedance. Even in a crowded platform landscape, TopBuzz offers discovery and revenue prospects that these creators describe as irrefutably additive. 

For Adam Olinger, host of the Adam Does Movies movie review and parody channel, pursuing a career in digital content creation has been a veritable passion project. As a husband and father with a full-time job as a web developer, Olinger shoots most of his videos late at night while his family is fast asleep, taking great pains to distinguish himself from the vast number of film and TV analysts that currently proliferate across YouTube and beyond.

Olinger has been able to so by conceiving original, recurring series on his channel, such as The Cringe, in which he plays a grating character named KhaleesiGrimes82, who discusses movie news and gossip from the perspective of an obsessive internet nerd. This approach has netted Olinger a tight-knit community of roughly 56,000 YouTube subscribers in the seven years the channel’s been on the site, which isn’t too shabby for a part-time gig.

We talked with Olinger, who was hand-selected by content aggregation app TopBuzz to join its Ignite Program — which provides unique distribution and monetization opportunities — about his decision to expand beyond YouTube, how his fans keep him going, and more. Check out the conversation in full below.

Tubefilter: At what point in your life did you sense an opportunity to parlay your love for movies into a career as a digital creator?

Adam Olinger: I have loved film as far back as I can remember, which honestly doesn’t say a lot, as my memory is pretty poor. I wish I could say that movies were my full-time career, but that’s far from the case still. I’m currently a full-time designer and web developer for a great company in Minnesota called Infinity Direct. My movie channel is still very much a passion project — one that I put a lot of time and energy into.

TF: As you say in your channel intro, there are a lot of “tired white males” on YouTube reviewing films. How do you strive to differentiate yourself?

AO: From the start, the goal of the channel was to be different from the overwhelming majority of critics online. I also knew that I couldn’t possibly compete with established critics, who sometimes see and review movies weeks in advance — I’d get buried in search results. That meant coming up with show concepts that not only talked about movies but that did so in entertaining ways. It’s not just me sitting in front of a collection of DVDs with a single camera shot, peppered with jump-cuts and no video footage. I wanted my shows to be just as fun as the movies I was covering.

TF: Why did you decide to create recurring series like ‘Movie Feuds’? How many recurring series are you currently producing?

AO: I started Movie Feuds with my buddy Cory Williamson around seven years back because we loved debating movies at lunchtime during work. My favorite critics growing up were Siskel & Ebert, and I always enjoyed when they would passionately argue over the quality of a film. Movie Feuds has gone through many changes over the years — the biggest one being the departure of Cory. We both had families and work obligations. We also weren’t getting substantial views two years into the show, which didn’t help matters. And so I decided to take Movie Feuds in a new direction. Eventuall,y I started scripting out every episode and really focusing on making a show I would enjoy watching.

I currently have three shows on my channel; Movie Feuds, Adam Rants Movies, and The Cringe. The Cringe is probably my favorite to film as it lets me play a character named KhaleesiGrimes82. He’s a representation of everything that’s wrong with the internet — a fake nerd that unapologetically loves and defends everything. Of course, it’s delivered with some heavy-handed sarcasm and allows me to stay current with the never-ending stream of movie news and gossip.

I have a couple other shows that I put in the rotation as well, such as Bad Movie Pitches, Bad Movie Auditions, and my new TopBuzz show, Bro Movie Reenactments.

TF: How often do you film, and what’s your favorite part of being a content creator?

AO: I film multiple shows at least once a week. Usually at night when my wife and kids are sound asleep.

As for what keeps me going, there is absolutely nothing better than seeing the comments from fans of the channel. There have been so many late nights where I question the point of all this work — but then it’s instantly justified by one simple comment. Typically, it’s along the lines of, “I was having a really bad week and this helped a lot.” I don’t have a large following compared to the big critics, but my smaller, vocal audience is sharp and appreciative.

TF: How did you learn about TopBuzz, and when did you start working with the company?

AO: I honestly don’t recall how I heard about TopBuzz. I think I received an email at some point about the platform so I just started posting videos there. A few months later, Austin Null from their team reached out to me personally. He told me about the TopBuzz Ignite Program and it was a no-brainer to join up.

TF: What’s your favorite TopBuzz feature?

AO: I know they have some pretty slick features, such as the ability to have multiple titles and thumbnails on a single video, but I was really impressed with their customer support. Talking with a real person is a rare commodity these days, so I was surprised by the quick responses from their team. They genuinely seem like they care about us creators.

TF: You were invited to join the company’s acceleration program, TopBuzz Ignite. What do you think the team saw in you?

AO: I’m not entirely sure what they saw in me! I know they are looking for creators that aren’t afraid to be themselves or worried about hurting their bottom-line. It’s easy to just approach the top-earners or those that have corporate-friendly content, so I’m happy that TopBuzz isn’t afraid to go after people that are simply passionate about making good content.

This Creator Spotlight is brought to you by TopBuzz. TopBuzz is a distribution platform that uses powerful AI and algorithms to help creators and publishers discover new audiences for their content. If you’re interested in monetizing your content join TopBuzz for free. Take the AI-powered app for a spin and see how your customized feed improves with every touch. Download TopBuzz for iOS or Android.

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