Do Less, Be More: The Power of Stream Self-Promotion

Thousands of people have turned a dream of playing video games into a profitable full-time job. Want to become one of them, but have no idea how to make other people get to know about you? Building your audience on Twitch or other streaming platform is hard, but with our tips it will be much easier.

#1. Create Your Image, Interact

There are so many people trying to be the next sensation on Twitch or Hitbox, that in order to win this strong competition you should bring something different to your stream. First of all, make it clear what you are promoting. Your live streaming channel is unique only because of you. Whether you are a funny person or have a sarcastic manner of commenting, you should emphasize this quality in your stream promotion. That sounds simple, but takes a lot of work: only YOU (your skills, your knowledge, and your charisma) can establish long-term relations with other streamers and make them watch your stream. The most effective way to raise your streaming channel recognition is networking, which means getting involved in different communities, forums, social networks, etc. If you firmly decide to promote your streaming channel, be ready to contribute much effort and patience. It takes some time to obtain visible results. N.B. If you enjoy playing competitive games, such as League of Legends or Rocket Legue, it is a good idea to engage your viewers to play with you. For example, you can schedule special nights when you play only with viewers.

#2. Take Part in Gamer Communities

Active interaction with other streamers is a key. When you have spare time, pay attention to other streaming channels, find streamers you like, start communication. For example, you can ask other streamers for streaming tips. Most of them would gladly give you some piece of advice. Try to become friends with other streamers, but don’t do it only for views. If you manage to create friendly relations, streamers will promote you of the own free will. Forums are a great way to get to know other people that share your interests and concerns. Check out the communities for games you enjoy most. It will be easy for you to join the conversation for the first time if you are talking about something you really like. To promote yourself via forums, you can add your live streaming channel link to your signature. Advertising your stream in the dialogues is a bad form of promotion. You can do it only in case somebody is directly asking you this info. Moreover, many forums forbid placing links within forum conversations. Be aware of possible restrictions and read forum Terms&Conditions before joining any community. Get to know other people, communicate, share your experience, and create connections first – remember that the word of mouth is one of the most effective ways of stream promotion. N.B. Among the most popular gaming communities we can list Reddit, The Lift Gaming Forums, BG Forum, /r/Twitch, etc.

#3. Connect Your Streaming Channel to Twitter

Search for streamers of your level and add them on Twitter and Twitter list. Then, look through the list of added contacts and identify streamers that only advertise their streams on Twitter. You can remove these people, as they are not helpful to you. Their Twitter accounts have been set up automatically when they linked their Twitter to Twitch. You need only those users that are active in conversations related to new games, features, etc, and are of the similar interest with you. Try to retweet, like and comment the users from your list on the regular basis. Moreover, it is good if you can contribute something to discussions: write your own tweets, share useful posts, find funny things – anything you think people are interested in. Tweet when you go live, announce updates to your schedule, comment recent gaming news. If you work for your reputation, sooner or later people will start to recognize you and your brand.

Here are some useful tips to help you promote Twitch stream through Twitter more successfully:

  • Create an Appropriate Username and Logo
Use the same username for Twitch and Twitter account. Have a logo of your stream is an advantage: put it as an account picture on Twitter.
  • Make Twitch Users to Follow You
Encourage Twitch users to follow you on Twitter by using info panel with Twitter image below your video stream or pop-in reminder.
  • Use Hashtags
Use hashtags – 2-3 maximum, more can be annoying. Hashtags should be short bullet points describing your stream, so that users can search for these terms and easily find your stream. You can also add such generic hashtags as #LOL, #WOW, #Hype, etc. – they will probably attract more people, but have less chance of getting notice.
  • Make Retweets
Don’t forget using images in your retweets – this will increase their popularity.
  • Choose the Concept of Your General Tweets
Your tweets can be related only to your stream and game OR they can be more personal (when you post whatever you think to be interesting to your audience). Remember, that users become more involved in the stream if they feel that they know you as a person.

#4. Promote Your Stream through Social Networks

Along with Twitter, you can use any social network to promote streaming channel (Facebook, Instagram. Snapchat, Steam, etc.) As you are streaming games, participating in Steam (the biggest game distribution platform) Groups can be a good idea. You can create your own Steam group to share events, announcements, and initiate discussions with other streamers. Facebook can also be perspective, if used properly. You can create a new page associated with your current Facebook account. But, for the security reasons, we would recommend create a new account and separate page for your streaming channel. Consistency and appealing posts are the important part of interaction on Facebook. Don’t forget about placing icon and banner of your streaming channel. When you have stream, you can create an event with some details. Moreover, you can add Facebok milstones: it looks good when you mark some significant events or numbers describing the growth of your live streaming channel. N.B. Include links to your social networks’ accounts on your Twitch page. Customize Twitch settings in order to post automatic updates about your streams to all social networks you are using for stream promotion. Don’t post the same content in all social networks; try to talk about different things. And the main thing – don’t forget to interact with your followers.

#5. Create a YouTube Channel

You can connect your Twitch or Hitbox account with YouTube. Thus, you will be able to export the most interesting highlights (past streams) to your YouTube account. You can also use YouTube to make announcements of your future streams and events or keep a video blog. Moreover, it is possible to set notifications for YouTube watchers indicating that you are currently live on Twitch. Search for these settings in Twitch Live Annotations. Using YouTube as an additional platform will help expose new people to your streaming channel. Many popular steamers edit and publish entire streams to YouTube, because they already have the demand for it. For beginning streamers we recommend making new content for YouTube (for example, you can create some compilations of fun time on your stream or list useful tips for beginning streamers) as well as creating short highlights.

#6. Organize Giveaways to Gain Loyalty of Fans

Organizing giveaways is another way to bring more people to your streaming channel. But, be aware that many people taking part in giveaways will join your channel only for seeking lucre. They can follow you during the giveaway period, but you will never see them again on your stream. Before organizing a giveaway on your channel, make sure that you understand all pros and cons of this type of stream promotion. Pros of Organizing a Giveaway:
  • Attracting more viewers to your streaming channel
  • Calling your viewers to action
  • Viewers have a chance to receive prize and are more motivated to watch your stream
Cons of Organizing a Giveaway:
  • Spending money
  • Attracting temporary people that are interested only in free prize, not your channel
  • If not done fairly, can scare away potential fans
Organizing giveaway on your live streaming channel can be an effective way of promotion. But, it can also be unprofitable and useless waste of time and efforts. For instance, it doesn’t have any sense to make a giveaway for a 50$ game, if you have only 5 viewers on your channel. Watch the video about 4 Keys to Successful Giveaways on Twitch (the same rules are applicable to any other streaming platform): N.B. Tools that can be used to organize giveaways for your live streaming channel: Twitch Giveaway Plugin (for Chrome), The Moobot, Amazon Giveaway.

Take Away

If you still think that you can just put the link of your streaming channel somewhere in the Internet and people will follow your stream, you are wrong: things don’t work that way. Promotion of live streaming channel is a tough work. You can have all existing social networks’ accounts, but if you don’t type anything more than “Hey, I’m going live now”, users won’t follow you for a long. The key of successful stream promotion is building relationships, sharing your experience and enjoying what you do.

11/1/2016