How To Be Successful On Twitch
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Twitch has grown to be a pretty big deal. It's the number one platform for streaming games on the Internet. The growth of Twitch has been fueled by a growing interest in eSports, independent broadcasters, and steady funding. As the service continues to become more mainstream, it's going to attract many people who may want to try their hands at making money by being broadcasters. After all, the more people that watch Twitch, the more opportunity there is to make a dollar. Playing games for a living, or just to make a little extra cash, sounds like a fantastic idea, but it's a very competitive field that's about to get even more crowded. Think you're up to the task? Let's see what it'll take to make it as a broadcaster.

As is currently stands, Twitch broadcasters mostly consist of people streaming games from their PCs. At the time of this writing, there are nearly 600 streams going on simultaneously. Once the Xbox One and PS4 come out, that number is sure to skyrocket thanks to their built-in Twitch integration. The barrier of entry won't be nearly as high once consoles come into the fray. New broadcasters won't need to worry about video cards, CPUs, RAM, and other technical bits that contribute to the overall quality of a stream. Starting up a Twitch stream will be as simple as hosting a multiplayer match. This will result in split viewership among new broadcasters. Standing out will be very difficult. On top of that, obtaining and keeping viewers requires a lot of work in its own right. If you want to stand a chance, there are some things that you absolutely must do.

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Engage the Audience

I don't know about you, but I think the most entertaining broadcasters are the ones that acknowledge your presence as a viewer. I never understood why someone would turn on their webcam, start up a game, and sit in complete silence. You need to show viewers that you appreciate them coming to your channel, and make them a part of the overall experience. The chat box is a HUGE part of Twitch, and it's the only way to know what the audience is thinking in real time. Read the chat, respond to the chat, and greet people when they come in. It may not seem like much, but people remember simple acts of courtesy like that.

Unfortunately, the Internet as a whole isn't a very courteous place. No matter what you do, you're bound to run into some trolls. They'll curse you, insult you, and try their hardest to make your stream miserable. Anyone that does that should be blocked without question. You don't even have to say anything to them. Just block them. Once you do that, carry on like nothing happened. Don't even mention it to the more civilized members of the chat. Vibes, whether positive or negative, are contagious. If your viewers see you're uneasy, they'll become uneasy. On the flip side, your positive attitude will rub off on viewers as well. Keeping the chat in check while trying to play a game won’t be easy. Once you earn some loyal viewers, you can set them up to be moderators to take some of the burden off you.

Arrange some community multiplayer matches as well. It can be a friendly competition between like-minded people who just want to have a little fun. People like feeling included.

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Stay as Consistent as Possible

Sometimes, when I browse Twitch, I come across new streams that I enjoy. If I don’t follow them right away, I make a mental note of when I was watching the stream so I can return another day. Treat your stream like how a television network treats its shows. If you stick to a schedule, people will know when to look for you. If they can’t nail down when you’re live, they’ll go somewhere else. It takes a tremendous amount of dedication to stick to a schedule that you set yourself. But if you want to get to the point where you can build a community on Twitch (and maybe make some cash), it can’t be avoided.

Be Yourself

If you’re going to be spending a lot of your time streaming, it’s very important you act as naturally as possible. Don’t try to mimic someone else or be the person you think the public wants you to be. They really just want you to be you. It’s really easy to tell when someone is faking their personality, and it’s very off-putting. Keep in mind, you’re going to be doing this for hours nearly every day. You’ll burn yourself out if you constantly pretend to be someone you’re not.

Getting known on Twitch is difficult, but if you apply at least one of these tips, it'll make your streaming career a little easier.

Jeremy Hill
Jeremy Hill
@JeremyTHill

Contributing Writer
Date: 10/04/2013

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