Influencer marketing is already a thriving industry that focuses on the biggest of the social platforms: Instagram, Facebook, YouTube, and Twitter. However, it’s the up-and-coming social platforms like Twitch and TikTok that might provide the biggest results for new brands, since influencer marketing is just beginning to develop in these places. Influencer marketing on Twitch could be the new way to get results for your brand and early adopters may be able to make big strides toward brand awareness on Twitch.
For gaming brands and the gaming industry at large, Twitch is already a natural extension of their target market and working with twitch influencers is a no-brainer. For other brands, you’ll need to find a niche, recruit the right influencers, and find unique ways to present your brand’s message.
What is Twitch?
Twitch is a video streaming social media platform founded in 2011, focused primarily on streaming gameplay. The most common streaming videos show popular gamers playing the game in real-time.
While similar to a YouTube channel, users on Twitch can share their videos. However, the primary difference is that Twitch focuses on the live-streaming experience instead of pre-recorded content.
Twitch is compatible with smartphones, gaming consoles, and computers, so they offer a wide variety of choices when someone streams games.
However, Twitch is no longer a gamers-only platform. Since Twitch was acquired by Amazon in 2014, they have started to promote other types of live-streaming content. Other categories of content include painting, cooking, podcasting, ASMR, and music. Basically, if you can live stream it, it lives somewhere on Twitch.
How Twitch Works
Twitch is a highly engaged community of users. There are the “streamers” who share their content and the “viewers” who consume this content. Here’s a breakdown of their basic features.
Streamers can start live-streams to share their content. Twitch notifies their subscribers that the stream has started and viewers can choose to join the live-stream.
Within the live-stream, viewers can chat back and forth with the streamer, or each other, and engage with the content that the streamer is sharing.
Twitch’s Pulse is similar to Facebook’s News Feed, where streamers and users can share updates for their content. Although not the primary focus of the platform, it provides a valuable space for streamers to share additional content with their subscribers.
Pulse also provides an additional piece of real estate for brands to work with influencers in creative ways.
Twitch appeals to a very specific audience, so it is important to examine your own target audience to determine if Twitch is the right fit for you.
82% of Twitch’s users are male, and 55% of these men are between the ages of 13 and 34.
There are more than 140 million monthly unique viewers on Twitch, and 3 million creators stream on Twitch each month. In fact, Twitch holds a whopping 72.2% share of the video game streaming market. They are the leaders of this industry by a large margin.
Since Twitch caters to the gaming community, certain assumptions can be made about their interests. Further research about specific streamers can also pinpoint which games they are interested in and which gaming consoles that they prefer.
It should be noted that not all content is family-friendly on Twitch. Luckily, this Reddit thread has plenty of recommendations for kid-appropriate channels.
Twitch is also uniquely suited for brand promotions. 80% of Twitch users are open to the idea of a brand sponsoring streamers on the platform.
Who are the Influencers on Twitch? Gaming Micro-Influencers and Streamers
On Twitch, the influencers look a little different than on Instagram or other social media platforms. Influencers on Twitch are offering live entertainment to their subscribers and other viewers, unlike other platforms which typically rely on static posts or sharing.
Twitch influencers are the streamers who have an engaged audience of subscribers. While subscribers is one factor indicating influence, it should not be the only consideration. Instead, working with gaming micro-influencers who have a small, but hyper-engaged audience could actually yield a great result for your brand. Engagement should be valued over subscribers as it is a better indicator of the streamer’s overall influence.
Benefits of Influencer Marketing on Twitch:
- A highly engaged audience –While Instagram has been the juggernaut of influencer marketing for a while now, promotions on Instagram are typically more static than Twitch. Instagram posts are images or video that the users can interact with after the fact. On Twitch, users can interact with the streamer in real time The users are highly engaged because they can interact with the streamer as they are creating content, rather than giving feedback and engagement after the influencer has already posted.Your influencer marketing promotions can get real-time feedback from potential customers and the streamer can answer their questions sooner than other platforms.
- Live chats – If you want to see what your typical customer thinks, then live chats are the place to be. The users can interact with the streamer and you can get to know your target customer in a real-world setting.
- Reach a niche audience – You can tailor your brand’s promotions to the audiences that you can find on Twitch. Given that Twitch users are mostly male and passionate about gaming, you can appeal to their interests with your branded campaigns.
Types of Promotions for Your Twitch Influencer Marketing
There are plenty of ways to use Twitch with your influencer marketing campaigns. Here are just a few ways that you can partner with streamers to build brand awareness among viewers.
Shouting out a brand during the live stream is an easy and effective way to get the word out about your brand. The streamer will take a moment at the beginning of the live-stream and at some point in the middle of the stream to talk about your brand.
The streamer should be given a couple of talking points to make sure that your brand’s message is covered. You should also watch a few of the streamer’s videos to see the best moments for presenting your brand’s content. Be sure to include a clear Call-to-Action so that the viewers know what they can do if they are interested in your brand.
Who doesn’t love a freebie? Streamers can really pack a punch with their brand promotions if you include something to motivate their followers to take action. Whether it’s a discount code, a contest, or a giveaway, their followers will appreciate that you are generous with your potential customers.
Giveaways also give you opportunities for user-generated content that you can use in other marketing channels. The streamer will enjoy a high level of engagement and you’ll have plenty of new leads!
Unboxings are a consistently high-performing type of content on Twitch and YouTube. Streamers will open the package from your brand live, on camera and share their initial thoughts on the products.
With unboxings, streamers can share how they plan to use the products and can show the products in a real-world setting.
Someone familiar with YouTube and Twitch may also be able to double-up on content for you, sharing their unboxing video to both channels.
Live chat is an opportunity for streamers to engage with their audience. They can post about the brand as the rest of the stream is happening and address any comments from their followers in response.
Live chat responses also help to reinforce any message presented during the live-stream through shout-outs. Chat bots may also provide a valuable place to discuss your brand. The streamer can set up a chat bot that replies with information about your brand when someone inquires. They can also set up a chat bot to address common questions that they receive about your brand. It’s a simple step that can help streamers expedite communication to their followers, so that they won’t have to manage as many pieces while they are creating content.
Twitch allows streamers to add a logo to their streams. Adding your brand’s logo can help viewers recognize your brand. Streamers can add it to the entire stream, or just when the sponsored content is presented.
Streamers can place information about the brand in their info section during streams. They can also hyperlink to the brand’s website, which allows viewers to easily find your brand online.
While probably not the singular way you want to partner with a streamer, adding your brand name to the stream’s title can help viewers find your brand online. It’s just one more place to get your brand’s name seen.
Because there’s sponsored content within the video, you should also include #ad or #sponsored in order to be FTC compliant.
Sharing to Pulse
If Pulse is the equivalent of Facebook’s timeline, then it’s valuable real estate for your brand’s messaging. Also, sharing to Pulse about upcoming streams can help you get additional viewers to your sponsored content.
4 Steps for Your Twitch Influencer Marketing
1. Set Your Goal
In order to successfully construct your Twitch influencer marketing campaigns, you’ll need to think about the results. If you’re trying to achieve better brand awareness, then partnering with a large streamer could be the right move.
If you’re trying to get the viewers to take an action, like signing up for an email list or downloading a freebie, then you’ll want to partner with the influencer in ways that will drive traffic to your website.
Once you have determined what you want to achieve, you can start to create a campaign that is guided by these goals.
2. Pick Your Influencers and Streamers
Your streamers should be selected according to your goals and your target audience. If you are trying to reach a certain demographic, then you should pick streamers who are reaching those particular viewers. Remember, just because a streamer fits your target demographic, doesn’t mean that their audience does too.
Once you have a list of streamers that you like, you can reach out through a Twitch chat or through email. Let them know that you’re interested in working with them and let them know how you would like to partner (shout-out, giveaway, etc).
3. Create Your Collaboration
It’s important to give the streamer the creative freedom to present your brand to their audience in a new and interesting way. Let them have input on how to best reach their viewers. They can provide valuable insight into ways to craft your brand’s narrative.
On the day of the promotion, you’ll want to be viewing the live stream and accessing the chat so that you can engage with the promotion as it’s happening. While a streamer should be allowed to answer any questions their viewers have, you may be able to lend support and offer answers about your brand if needed. You should also have a way outside of Twitch to reach your streamer in case you need to provide an answer for them or correct anything within the promotion. A phone number so you can text back and forth as needed is all that’s needed.
4.Track Results & Repeat!
There are a few ways to track the results of your campaign. If you are sharing a coupon code, then you can track uses and purchases with the code. You can also track clicks on any hyperlink within the streamer’s information.
Once you’ve tracked your results, you’ll be able to adapt your approach and repeat the promotion. With each sponsored stream, you should be able to improve your results and optimize each campaign with the previous campaign’s findings.
Upcoming Trends for Twitch’s Influencer Marketing
Non-gaming streams are on the rise.
Twitch is trying to broaden its appeal in the midst of other streaming competitors, like YouTube, Instagram, and Facebook. In doing so, they are promoting non-gaming channels to reach broader demographics.
In growing their non-gaming categories, Twitch is rapidly becoming an option for brands outside of the gaming industry. Brands in the lifestyle, retail, and wellness spaces are finding channels that suit the needs of their influencer marketing.
Authentic engagement is being rewarded.
Twitch is focusing their efforts on keeping the platform authentic. Recently, Twitch started Channel Points, which allows streamers to reward loyal viewers. Twitch is trying to reward streamers who are really engaging with their audience, so that engagement is prioritized by users of the platform above other vanity metrics.
Top Talent is getting scooped up.
As big brands start adopting Twitch as another channel for their influencer marketing, they’ll try to lock down talent so that they have exclusive access. This could mean that gamers and influencers on the platform receive lucrative deals, but it could also mean that the top level of talent is committed to other brands by the time that Twitch influencer marketing is widely adopted.
Watch Parties could be the next big thing.
Because Twitch is now owned by Amazon, watch parties is a new feature that will soon allow streamers to watch content from Amazon Prime and react to it in real time. While this feature is still being tested, it could become a staple of the platform in the near future.
Twitch is releasing user-friendly software.
Twitch Studio is designed to make streaming easier for new users. It will take a lot of the complexities out and will simplify the streaming experience for these new channels.
In addition to simplifying streaming, Twitch is also working on integrating with Apple TV, so that viewers can watch live and pre-recorded content from this device.
All in all, Twitch is trying to make live-streaming accessible to the masses, so that all demographics can start using the platform.
There’s no time like the present to try Twitch. As users across all social platforms begin to favor video content over images, Twitch will become more and more important within the influencer ecosystem. Brands who are early adopters of the platform will reap the greatest benefits from these influential streamers.
Live-streaming could just help you unlock a whole new way of generating interest and revenue for your brand!