Faces of Gaming: Brian Christopher — From actor, Uber driver, and cater waiter to slot celebrity

October 2, 2022 8:48 AM

Faces of Gaming: Brian Christopher — From actor, Uber driver, and cater waiter to slot celebrity

Photo: CDC Gaming Reports
  • Tom Osiecki — CDC Gaming Reports and Raving Partner
October 2, 2022 8:48 AM
  • Tom Osiecki — CDC Gaming Reports and Raving Partner

Faces of Gaming is a monthly column from consultant Tom Osiecki about interesting and engaging people in the gaming industry.

The thing about Brian Christopher is this: What you see is what you get. It’s his superpower, what sets him apart.

Christopher has the enviable job of streaming videos to a vast audience of fans while playing slots on a regular basis. Early on, his authentic, honest, and affable style put Christopher on a path to become a dominant casino influencer. And from this simple concept, Christopher grew Brian Christopher Slots, a giant in the evolving casino-influencer space, with 1.3 million subscribers over multiple platforms, 5.9 million monthly unique viewers, and 600,000 average daily video views.

From Uber to influencer

“I visited Vegas for the first time about six years ago. So I went to YouTube to find out what casinos I should visit and what games to play. I found people were uploading videos of themselves playing slot machines. I thought that was really weird; why would anyone ever want to watch that? A few hours later, I was still watching and realized the appeal of it.

“I decided that when I was in Vegas, I’d record some of these for fun. I filmed myself playing a couple of games and put them on my YouTube acting channel. That was it. I was done and never planned to upload another slot video. About a week later, I looked back and I had over a thousand subscribers, thousands of views, and tons of people in the comments asking when the next video was coming out.

“So I was like okay, maybe I’ll put out some more. Then I was invited to the YouTube Partner Program, where you can start monetizing videos. I was an actor who’d just moved to the United States from Canada. I was working for Lyft and Uber. I was a cater waiter.

“Now, I was making more money on my YouTube videos than at those jobs to support my acting. I knew I was onto something. I started going back to the casino getting more video content, uploading more regularly, and making it look more professional. I really haven’t stopped since,” said Christopher.

YouTube, cruises, and a slot machine

An actor since age 12, Christopher parlayed videoing himself playing slots into YouTube and Facebook channels, merchandise sales, exclusive cruises on Carnival Cruise Lines, a Brian Christopher-themed slot section at the Plaza Hotel and Casino in Las Vegas, and a Brian Christopher-branded slot game recently released by Gaming Arts.

The rising influence of influencers

The concept of casino influencers seems like an obvious idea.

Millions of people enjoy playing slots on a regular basis. Why not have a place where they can enjoy watching what they enjoy doing and learn about the variety of games and new games coming on the market?

I recently spoke with Christopher about the reason for the rising influence of influencers in the casino industry.

“I’m not an ad, right? I’m not a casino saying, ‘Stay here, eat that.’ People see a living talking person who speaks their language and is at their same level. For us, our audience is such a big part of what we do. Every single week, we’re hosting meet-and- greets. We’re going all over, connecting with people on a human level. The great part is that it’s just me. I’m not putting on a show. I’m not an actor playing a part. I’m just having fun.”

With a business model that emphasizes the personal touch, Christopher has a full schedule of appearances at major casinos across the country. He offers them videos, live premieres, livestreamed group slot pulls, slot tournaments, meet-and-greets, branded slot-floor design, contests, sweepstakes, VIP player offers, and a targeted newsletter.

A Younger Audience

Brian Christopher Slots has 536,000 YouTube subscribers and 640,000 Facebook followers. A look through his media kit reveals an audience that definitely trends younger and skews male—a market that has been long coveted by casinos.

“It doesn’t make any sense. Usually, Facebook is known to be older and more female. And it’s great. I’m a male Millennial, so that helps you know why they connect with me. I think that when we first started and when everything was shut down, people were just looking for content. Millennials started enjoying the entertainment that I provided and Facebook started targeting that audience,” Christopher related.

The core experience

With a massive streaming audience and a work ethic that includes hundreds of personal appearances, I asked what makes up the core of the Brian Christopher experience.

“It’s inclusiveness. It’s authentic. It’s fun! It’s community, really. We connect with everyone from every walk of life around the love of slot machines. We all come from different walks of life. We all have different political views. We’ve all had different struggles in our lives, but we can connect over this and it’s beautiful.”

A Slot influencer with his own slot machine

Over the summer, Las Vegas-based slot manufacturer Gaming Arts released Brian Christopher’s Pop’N Pays More!, a slot machine co-created by Christopher. The game features Christopher’s images and catch phrases known by his fans, called Rudies.

“I wanted some fun features on the game, some interactive things happening. They were totally on board with everything I suggested. Everything that you see on the game is a perfect collaboration between us and Gaming Arts,” Christopher stated.

In a press release on the game, Christopher added, “We’re a perfect match. We’re both super-innovative and forward-thinking. As my fans already loved the original Pop’N Pays games with their constant action, fun bonuses, free games, and catchy music, Gaming Arts was the obvious choice to partner with.

“It’s been just about two months now and we’re in over 20 casinos in eight different states,” said Christopher.

Cruise exclusive

Christopher recently struck an exclusive deal with Carnival Cruise Lines.

You’ll be able to see him play at sea across the Carnival Cruise Line fleet, which is now the exclusive cruise partner of Brian Christopher Slots. He’s also Carnival’s exclusive casino-gaming influencer.

Plaza experience

Expanding from digital media to brick-and-mortar casinos, Christopher has a branded slot section at the Plaza Hotel and Casino in Las Vegas.

“As of 2023, we’re going to be working exclusively on smoke-free gaming floors. So the Plaza chose to build an expansion on our existing space, which is super-exciting. The Brian Christopher Slots at Plaza area will now go from about twenty-eight slot machines to closer to eighty.

“I oversee selecting the games that go in the area. I pick all my favorite games, games that I love and that my fans would love.

“It’ll have its own entrance from the street at the front of Plaza, which will be completely smoke-free. So that partnership has been really great for us both. It’s been a long time coming.”

Playing with a purpose

Christopher is known for being outspoken about several causes. Recently, he received the Harvey Milk Foundation Visibility Award from the Harvey Milk Foundation.

“I was surprised to be contacted by Harvey Milk’s nephew, Stuart Milk. It’s about what I do in my videos. What I do is just show myself as my authentic self. I’m a gay man. I’m married to a man. We’ve been together for 19 years. We have a great relationship and we share our photos and a love of each other on social media, and everyone sees that.

“That visibility is why we got the Visibility Award. That’s pretty incredible,” Christopher exclaimed.

“One of my favorite experiences was a fan telling me, that because of me, when their son came out to them as gay, they were able to accept him. They’d never met a gay person and said they would have disowned their son before. But after seeing my love of Marco and how ‘normal’ we were, they realized we’re all the same and that love is love.”

Smoke-free commitment and photo bombing

In 2023, Christopher, a longtime proponent of smoke-free casinos, will appear exclusively at smoke-free facilities—putting his own money where the smoke isn’t.

“I believe in it. I think it’s the future. A lot of casinos that went smoke-free during COVID and have remained smoke-free are seeing the benefits. We’re already over 60% booked out for next year. I know we’ll be fine. Even our Carnival Cruises next year will have a smoke-free casino onboard,” Christopher related.

Not surprisingly, Christopher has campaigned for allowing photos in casinos.

“It’s still crazy to me that you can get kicked out of a casino if you take a photograph of you and your friends having fun. Or videoing a bonus or taking a video of a jackpot you just hit and sharing it with your friends on social media. It makes absolutely no sense that they would say no.

“A lot of casinos have come around to it now. A lot of them are now saying you can take a photo, you can take your videos, whatever you want.

“It’s definitely been a tremendous help toward changing that mindset.”

Oh Nelly!

If you’re walking through a casino and hear people yelling, ‘Oh Nelly!”’ after a big win, “Line it UP!” in anticipation of a winning spin, and other Brian Christopher catch phrases, including “Do it to it!,” “It’s all about timing!,” and “Rude,” know that you’re in the company of the growing trend of casino influencers.

After all, what you see is what you get with Brian Christopher fans.

For more information on Brian Christopher Slots, visit www.bcslots.com.

—————————

Former entries in the Faces of Gaming series:


Tom Osiecki is a casino consultant who writes an occasional column for CDC Gaming Reports called Faces of Gaming, about interesting and engaging people in the gaming industry.

Tom Osiecki is a marketing and management consultant for Raving Consulting and can be reached for consulting engagements at 775-329-7864.

If you know of a fascinating personality in the gaming industry you would like to see profiled, please send Tom Osiecki an email at tosiecki@cdcgaming.com.