Everyone says it’s really hard to grow on Twitch. The platform is saturated and the ideas have all been done before, right?
What if we said growing your Twitch stream isn’t actually as hard as people have told you?
You don’t have to be the best at your game or an incredible comedian to grow your community. You just need to learn more about what it takes to build a small business.
Why Streaming Is A Small Business
A small business needs four things:
1. A product
2. A group of customers
3. A way to deliver the product to the customer
4. A system to collect value in exchange for the product
When we apply this to streaming, we realize the business model is the exact same:
1. The product is the streamer.
2. The group of customers is the streamers audience.
3. A way to deliver the product is the streamers content.
4. A system to collect value is the streamers monetization strategy.
This means we can apply traditional business concepts like marketing and branding to streamers and see valuable returns in effort.
The best news is these business concepts have worked for millions of companies and creators. They can work for you too.
Here’s where to start.
Step One: Start With Self-Awareness
Step one is to create your product - yourself. You can do this by improving your self-awareness then growing your skills based on the information you discovered. Self-awareness is your ability to accurately assess your skills and opportunities.
Our favorite way to grow self-awareness is with our free workbook Build Your Dream Stream.
In the Build Your Dream Stream Workbook, you’ll get 6 exercises to help you learn more about yourself and connect with your goals and ultimate vision.
Having this information before creating content ensures the things you create will take you where you want to go.
If you’ve already started streaming, don’t worry. You can still do these exercises.
Next up, you need to learn who your audience is.
Step Two: Define Your Perfect Viewer
Most streamers think any +1 to their viewership is a step in the right direction. This belief can be very detrimental to your stream.
When you create content for everyone, your brand becomes hard to understand and generic. When a brand is generic, it’s impossible for a viewer to have preference for it. Preference drives people to watch some streamers over others.
To make people prefer your stream, you need to create a space that makes them say “Wow! I’ve been looking for a stream exactly like this! I’m so glad I found you.”
The only way to do this is by creating a space for a specific type of person. We call this “Your Perfect Viewer”.
You need to know exactly who this person is; likes and dislikes, what they do in their free time, what their goals are, etc. You need to know them as well as you know yourself.
Then you’ll build a brand that speaks to them and creates preference for your stream. This is how you’ll grow: by attracting your perfect viewer over and over, then doing things to make them stay.
Step Three: Build A Brand They Love
It’s not enough to know who you create for, you must also know how to communicate in a way your Perfect Viewer will understand and relate to.
This communication happens everywhere in your content: your graphics, consistency, content style, topics, energy, the way you treat others, and more. Everything you do either serves or detracts from your brand.
This means every interaction someone has with you is an opportunity to deliver value to your Perfect Viewer.
You deliver this value through your content.
Step Four: Create Valuable Content
There is a lot of nuance here, but there are two main things you need to know:
1. The content must add value through entertainment, education, inspiration, connection, etc.
2. It must speak to your Perfect Viewer.
Learning to create content takes trial and error. You might feel like you’re creating for a long time and no one is paying attention. This is normal.
Focus on learning as much as you can and don’t quit. This simple strategy will put you ahead of 95% of streamers.
When your content starts attracting people, it’s time to learn about community.
Step Five: Build A Community
Community strategies bring people together. They help your audience become friends.
When you can inspire this level of connection, you build relationships that will keep your viewers coming back.
A great way to help your viewers get to know each other is by featuring them. Use your platform to highlight their work and help them break the ice with each other. You might try a weekly featured member or hold live interviews.
The next step is building a business model to keep it all running.
Step Six: The Business Model
If streaming is a hobby for you this step doesn’t matter much, but if you want to make content creation into a career building a strong business model is important.
Making money from your stream empowers you to invest back into your content. It unlocks more opportunity for your community and your life.
There are a lot of ways to make money as a streamer: affiliate marketing, sponsorships, merch, crowdfunding, selling your own product/service, appearances, and more.
The way you make money is completely customizable to your goals.
There is a lot to learn about every step in this process so it’s important to understand this one piece of advice: streaming is a journey. You probably won’t be great in the beginning, but it’s not impossible to grow a stream or become a great streamer.
Dedicate yourself to streaming, give it time, and learn as much as you can. Our team is here to help if you need it.