How to Grow on Twitch in 2021 - 5 Tips Every New Streamer Needs to Know!
Alright, so a lotta you guys have been asking me recently how we went about growing from no Twitch following at all, to over 20,000 Twitch followers and an average 100 to 300 concurrent viewers per stream in only 6 months.
Today, as part of a brand new Twitch growth series, I’m going to take a little of your time to not only walk you through how I did it, but how you guys can as well.
So I urge you to take a few minutes to read through as much of this as you can as I’ll be going over the Do’s and Don’ts of what to do and what to avoid doing to grow your Twitch channel.
Now I went browsing around the internet – various different websites, forums and even Reddit in an attempt to find out what worked for other people. To see the advice given to new up-and-coming streamers.
One of the most common suggestions given was to buy followers – DON’T!
Regardless of how tempting it may be. This is 100%, without a doubt the wrong way to go about beginning your Twitch journey. You should NEVER purchase bots. You should NEVER purchase fake views.
They do absolutely nothing and are recognizable to Twitch staff when reviewing your account for Affiliate and Partner. Plus, wouldn’t it be more fulfilling to have grown off of your own merit?
Okay, let’s start this off with what is perhaps the most overlooked arsenal at your disposal: Social media. I know, I know. “You can’t grow on Twitch using social media!” – I’m sorry, but yes, yes you definitely can. And I’m going to explain how right now.
First things first: Do not – and I cannot stress this enough – use social media as a means to exclusively advertise your stream. Nobody is going to care about it. I cannot tell you how many people I follow on Twitter that spam 3, 4 times per day that they’re streaming. That they’re “still streaming.”
Social media is a means to go about growing your presence on a separate platform. Spam will always be treated the exact same way: It will be both ignored–overlooked completely, and you’ll lose interaction. Potential future interaction.
Your goal on social media is to post about things that interest you – that might be of interest to other people. You need to search for topics that you either cover, have personal experience with, or can relate to.
You need to find people that are actively talking about those topics, and you need to engage them. You need to engage their followers – the people that liked, that retweeted, that shared their posts.
Again, don’t spam. You’re looking to actually build real relationships with other people. If you go into this with the sole intention of “gaining a new follower,” then just stop. It will be very evident, and that isn’t the type of relationship you want to have with other people. You’d essentially be using them.
Be genuine. Be honest. Be friendly, and be nice. Growing a social media presence on other platforms is important. It allows for you to interact with other people in the same genre as you, it allows you to connect with your viewers – your fans in ways that you wouldn’t otherwise.
And don’t just stick to a single platform. Create an official Twitter. Create a branded Facebook page. An Instagram. A TikTok even if you think you have the time for that. Get your name out there. Start engaging other people. Make friends. Find people with similar interests to you.
FIND A GAME
So far I’ve noticed that new streamers tend to fall into one of two categories: The streamer that thinks they can grow by streaming newer, more popular games because other popular streamers are streaming them. And the streamer that plays niche, obscure titles thinking playing something unique will garner growth for them.
One very important thing worth noting here is neither the former, nor the latter are going to work for you. If you repeatedly stream new games, popular games.. you’ll end up behind the hundreds, if not thousands of other streamers that have established followings.
If you stream games nobody is watching – games nobody cares about.. nobody will find you. So what do you do? You find “a game,” not multiple games. Find a game that you think you can dedicate a large amount of time to, and stream it.
But you have to make sure it’s not only something you think you can enjoy long-term, but it’s gotta be something that viewers are going to be able to enjoy as you continue to grow and stream it regularly.
Why do you think so many streamers start off playing games like Overwatch or Fortnite, then after growing, having hundreds, maybe thousands of concurrent viewers, move to include additional games into their schedule?
If you dedicate yourself to a single game – to getting good at that single game, you’ll find viewers are more apt to stick around and watch you. This works even better when you stick to a single game and base your social media profiles around growing in the same niche.
Trust me, when you make a name for yourself in a single game – Final Fantasy XIV, World of Warcraft, Overwatch, Fortnite.. people will seek you out, both your Twitch, your social media – heck, even your Youtube if you have one. Speaking of..
YOU NEED A YOUTUBE CHANNEL
I’m not exaggerating here. You absolutely need a Youtube channel. Granted, you don’t necessarily need an editor – you can get into editing yourself and edit everything on your own, but you need a Youtube channel. There’s no denying that.
The #1 way to grow your Twitch channel is by pushing new viewers to your stream. What is the largest social platform on the internet? Youtube. While social media is great for slowly pushing new viewers to your stream, nothing comes close to the kind of traffic Youtube can generate.
And I’m not saying to upload crappy-quality “highlight” videos of your stream, no. You’ll get a view here or there, and that will be treating your channel much in the way you’d treat a spammy social media account.
What you need to do is create a Youtube channel and tailor content to the audience you’re attempting to build.
Do you have an MMO channel? Do you stream World of Warcraft? Use that knowledge, use that footage you’ve acquired streaming to create guides on class builds, guides on PvP, dungeon guides.
Do you have an FPS channel? Do you stream Overwatch? Again, use that knowledge, that footage to create guides on how to play different heroes, secret spots to place turrets, aiming guides.
There is so much you can utilize Youtube for – and you can push all of that traffic directly to your stream.
Streaming on time, multiple times per week is important. So is streaming the same type of game people come to know you for. Consistency is key – and this applies to a variety of different things.
If you have a schedule, make sure you stick to it. If you can only find time to stream twice per week, every Tuesday and Saturday, then don’t fret. People will still be more than happy to stop by and watch you during those 2 days per week.
As long as you’re making sure to stream every Tuesday and Saturday – you’re making sure to begin on time, and end on time. There’s nothing worse than wanting to watch someone – but having said streamer begin at random intervals throughout the day.. or worse, week.
Furthermore, as noted in the “Find a game” segment: Stick to a game. Streaming a variety of games isn’t going to appeal to a wider audience – it’s going to alienate your current audience.
Consistently streaming the same game will allow you to grow an audience consisting of fans of that particular game. Nobody wants to watch you play Counter Strike if you’re an MMO player.
Consistency allows people to make you a regular part of their day – their week. You become a reliable source of information, a reliable source of entertainment for them.
Seriously, don’t overdo it.
When starting a brand new stream – well, even if you’re not new to streaming, but you’re still small – you’re still attempting to garner that initial wave of interested viewers, make sure to balance what you do.
Stream on a schedule. But at the same time, make sure you’re not streaming for too long – or not long enough. Most successful streamers will tell you that you need to stream for several hours per day.
Not only does it provide you the potential to find a larger number of new viewers – or recurring viewers at different times during the day, but it provides additional content for viewers that are both sticking with you throughout the stream, and newer viewers popping in for the first time.
And when streaming, please don’t overact. I know some of the top streamers on the platform these days are “overreactors,” but let’s be real.. people aren’t looking for a less popular version of someone they already watch. They want someone unique – that can offer them something other streamers can’t.
With this in mind, your “character,” your “persona,” should be an extension of who you are. Don’t act like someone you’re not. Balance who you are – but a more active version of who you are.
I’ve read that you should act as though you have hundreds viewers watching you, and honestly that’s not untrue. But don’t be obnoxious. Just be who you are.. only a little more entertaining.
When I started Youtube I never did it with the intention of growing to the almost 300,000 subscribers we have currently. Yet here we are, and I cannot be more thankful for the amazing community we’ve amassed.
However, Mrs Stix – who’s my wife, and myself included, both wanted to begin streaming over on Twitch. Partly because it sounded fun, providing us the opportunity to engage with our viewers – and partly because it would be a new way of obtaining footage for future videos.
But starting a Twitch channel is difficult, and we only averaged 10, maybe 12 viewers the first few streams.
By the end of the first month, we were averaging 50-60 average viewers, and fast forward 6 months we’re averaging anywhere from 100-300 viewers, depending on what we happen to stream at the time.
Unfortunately we chose to stream a variety of MMOs to obtain footage for our channel so that has ultimately limited our overall growth, but what we did was utilize our Youtube channel – ahead of the content – in the intro, letting viewers know we stream the game we’re talking about.
We utilized the Twitter pages we had grown, the Facebook page we had grown, the Instagram page we had grown. We utilized every method we had – we remain active on every platform because honestly.. they’re an amazing way to stay connected with everyone.
But we’ve grown utilizing the exact methods listed above. We’re exactly who we are, we stream 3 times per week: Tuesday, Saturday and Sunday at 3PM EST, we grow and push our stream through our Youtube channel, social media, and.. well we don’t stick to a game but we stick to a genre, and that’s good enough for us.
With the knowledge above, I guarantee you’ll find success in some form streaming. But this is only part 1 of a multi-part series I plan on creating to help you guys grow on Twitch and Youtube.
I plan on covering quite a bit more over the next several months – and if you guys have questions, or suggestions on what I should cover relating to Twitch next, let me know in the comments down below!