Adley Kinsman has come a long way since the days she was known as Adley Stump. A young girl with big dreams and a lot of drive. Life has taken her in many different directions but it always comes back to doing everything with joy and grace. Entertainment is her passion, and yet, as Adley sees it, passion is fluid, and it can change over time and circumstance.
With a lot of hard work, dedication, and learning many lessons out of hard situations, Adley has become a massive success story in the entertainment industry. Adley Kinsman is an entertainer in her own right with over 19 million social media followers. There are Adley videos and Adley pranks that regularly go viral. But Adley is also the CEO and Founder of Story House Media and now VIRALISH, a company that helps people brands, and events integrate themselves into social communities at scale, and only paying for how viral they go.
Making viral videos is an art that Adley Kinsman is really good at. She is one of the most-viewed female producers in Facebook and Snapchat history. She continuously averages over 2 billion views each month. That is massive. And she helps others to achieve the same incredible results. Entertaining people is what she does, whether that be through her music, through social media videos or pranks, or any other way. Let’s take a closer look to find out who Adley Kinsman is now and what others can learn from her incredible journey.
Can Give Us a Short Description of Your Journey So Far?
I feel like I have lived so many lives in the last decade! I started as a singer, signed a bad deal, ended up broke and bankrupt. I built myself back ended up touring stadiums opening for Blake Shelton, Thomas Rhett, Train, Philip Phillips, Tim McGraw, etc… but the music industry was still so full of red tape. And I knew I wanted more. I wasn’t going to wait for a suit behind a desk to give me a seat at the table anymore. I was going to build my own table.
And that goal has led to me to running a multi-million dollar a year company that allows me to do exactly what I set out to do. Entertain people, and do it on my own terms.
You Started Out On “The Voice”. How Did That Happen?
I was a senior in college at Oklahoma State University. I was a strategic communications major, and I was planning to just go work in a cubicle somewhere doing PR. I was that friend who didn’t say “no” to much and loved a good story and a good time, so some of my friends dared me to audition for this show called The Voice.
I drove through the night, chugging energy drinks for an audition at 8am this next morning. In a nutshell, I made it through multiple auditions and made it on the show. I was just looking up to God and thinking “what the heck are you doing?! I don’t know what I’M doing! You’ve got the wrong girl!”
It was my first time on a real stage! Blake Shelton and Christina Aguilera turned around for me and I ended up choosing Blake.
It is clear that Adley didn’t yet know just how insanely talented she was at the time. She was shocked to be on stage among all of these talented artists, getting a shot to do something she had never imagined doing.
The fans adored her even then. This all gave her a lot of confidence as an entertainer and many of the lessons that Adley learned at the time would stick with her for years to come.
You Have Spoken About a Specific Experience That Has Become Your North Star…
Yes, it was during the time after you film the show, but before it airs. You know your life is about to change, but nobody else does.
I was laying in the gym, and I was praying. I had moved to Nashville, signed what I thought was an amazing record deal, and waiting for the episodes to air.
I had just been going to school for PR, and my goal was to work for a non-profit. I wanted to speak, and encourage, and inspire people, people. And now here I was in Nashville with a record deal and on a massive show? Being a country music singer when I didn’t even think I know how to sing?
And I just heard the internal voice say, “Ad, what do you think you are supposed to do? I just gave you a stage and a microphone. What do you think you’re supposed to do with it? Go SPEAK. Go ENCOURAGE. Go INSPIRE PEOPLE. I’m just giving you a bigger platform than you were going to give yourself.”
And that is what Adley has been doing ever since. She went through a lot of hard times. A terrible record deal set things back and even forced her to declare bankruptcy at one point. But through it all Adley kept grinding hard and trying to do something that would entertain and encourage others to have confidence in their own authenticity and abilities.
Things Have Gone Wrong in Your Life. How Do You Deal With The Hard Times?
The bad things aren’t happening TO you. They are happening FOR you. They are incredible, irreplaceable gifts designed to refine you and make you stronger and able to climb the next mountain ahead of you. The same tools that got you this far are NOT the same set of tools that will take you where you are going next. So every time I feel like I’m in a valley, I ask myself “what tools am I supposed to pick up here? What am I supposed to learn through this time?” Because I know the faster I learn them, the faster I can get onto climbing the next mountain!
Adley does admit that it is easy to say this now in hindsight but it wasn’t that easy to get to this place where she views bad things in this way. There were times she was struggling but she knew she had to work hard to overcome it all. And boy, has she done that in a big way.
There Is a Quote That You Try to Live By…
I don’t remember whose it was, but they said “If you make your life a life of service, you will never wake up lonely, depressed, or anxious again.” Not another day in your life. It is when we focus on ourselves, trying to change our own circumstances, that we can feel even more stuck and hopeless. And if you feel caught in that cycle, quit thinking about yourself so much. Focus on simply making someone else’s day. And watch how much better yours gets in the process.
Adley worked at finding a way to use all the lessons she had learned on her journey in a way that she could entertain and have a fun life where she could uplift others. She realized that singing didn’t need to be the main focus. It was just the introduction to becoming an entertainer on a much bigger level. She has become a massive social media star in the process.
How Did Social Media Help You?
It changed everything! If you want to entertain, just entertain. You don’t need permission to do that. I just started making these personality-forward videos and that would resonate 10 times more than my posts about music. Music was focused on promoting ME. And the silly videos were focused on adding value to other people. That’s the difference in why it worked.
She was still trying to reconcile the musician side of herself and the behavioral identity. People expected her to sing, and was felt she was letting people down by going on a different path. It was only when she understood that passions can change that she could really start to flourish.
What Would You Say to People Starting Their Own Business?
Buckle Up! The highs are so high. You are so proud of yourself. And the lows CAN BE equally so low if you let the losses and failures become tied to your ego and identity. Don’t let them attach. You are not your failures. Failure is a requirement for success. You will fail all along your way to the top. It’s only a true failure when you quit, and you don’t learn from each failure, and take those lessons with you.
Learning From Her Journey
It is clear that Adley has embraced the lessons life has taught. Her followers love the fun personality that she brings to the table and the heart that comes along with it. That is why she is one of the most viral content producers of the last three years and why we can’t wait to see more!