Twitch is definitely the go-to platform of any budding streaming gamer. But while the grass is greener on this side of the garden (opposite YouTube of course), not everyone will find success, followers and earnings as Summit1g, TSM_Myth, Riot Games and other top streamers on Twitch.
Boosting the number of viewers isn't just important for popularity purposes. You actually need the viewers to increase so you could get 'Affiliate' status and begin to earn from your streams.
To become eligible, your Twitch channel should have at least 50 followers with an average 3 (or more) viewers over the last 30 days. You should also have broadcasted at least 500 minutes in the last 30 days and have been active for at least 7 unique broadcast days in the last month.
The good news though, is that you can do something about your Twitch numbers. If you're planning to take the platform seriously, this post is a must-read and should teach you how to get more and more and even more viewers on twitch.
How to Get More Viewers on Twitch
By now, you should have set-up your gaming station, installed your chosen gameplay recording software, and written a business plan, content calendar, and Twitch goals.
It's perfectly normal for you to explore the ways how to get twitch viewers. After all, everyone starts out with virtually ZERO viewers and then makes their way up.
Before you learn all the secrets to get twitch viewers that I'm going to share to you below, I have three questions for you:
Do you have the patience to work hard to gain followers? - You might think that streaming games "is all fun and games," but if you're coming into this industry in hopes of making revenue from your content, it is important that you have the patience to see things through.
Do you have the potential to grow? - Twitch can be a complicated business model. It could start fun, then the goals of streaming daily (or more) could lead to a lot of mistakes, or even burn out. Are you ready to fail and learn from the experience? Is your mindset prepared for the ups and down you'll likely live through?
Answer these three questions as honest as you can. If you answered YES to all, then let's begin exploring these 15+ methods of how to gain viewers on twitch.
Hard Work and Good Strategy WILL Pay Off
Ask any famous streamer how to get more followers on twitch and you'll receive a consistent answer: work hard.
In the world of online streaming, working hard means you have to stream consistently and frequently. You can try different techniques on how and when you'll stream, but a good strategy should include:
Ideally, you should stream for long sessions (at least 4 hours per session), and several times a week. Doing so could improve your chances of being discovered by more people.
Use Social Media Message Boards And Chat It Up To Win Over More Viewers
Becoming proactive is another effective, yet underrated technique on how to get more viewers on Twitch. Go outside Twitch and encourage people from social media, forums, and various message boards into checking you out on Twitch.
Below are some places you can begin. Pick and choose which ones you'd like to try, or do all to expand your reach:
- Your Profile - Share your streaming details with family and friends on your personal Facebook account. Encourage them to share your post to THEIR friends and family as well.
- Facebook Groups - You can find existing Facebook Groups that you think may be a place where your target market "hang out." This can be anything from PC gaming, Twitch-related groups, vintage gaming, and so on. Make sure you follow their rules and never spam. If you can't find anything specific to your niche, maybe you should be the one to lead and create that group.
- Sponsored Posts - Place an ad (there's a fee for this), and answer anyone who comments on the ad post.
Other Social Media
- Twitter - Got 140-character game? Go here for quick promotions. Try to tag your posts with other popular Twitch streamers. You might get lucky to get a shout out.
- Instagram - You'll need an eye-catchy picture or video to get the attention of people here, but it's also worth a shot.
- TikTok - The newest of the bunch, if you have followers on TikTok and would like to invite them to your Twitch, you can use this as many times you wish.
- Reddit - Reddit is the king of all messaging boards. You can find anything and everything under the sun being discussed here. However, Reddit is notorious for not liking self-promoters, so only share your Twitch account or streaming details here if you have something unique to share, or if your content would bring value to Reddit users.
- Esports forums - Online gaming is a serious market. You can find dozens of forums dedicated to the games you play, the country you're in, and other categories.
Discord is a free VoIP application that many Twitch streamers and YouTubers prefer to chat up their followers. Aside from the live messenger chat you can set up during your Twitch stream, Discord also lets you join or create Discord Groups exclusively for your own community.
Go to Meetups and Events
This isn't just a tip on how to get more Twitch viewers; this can also be a good way of making new friends.
By going out and participating in local events or meet-ups during conferences like MineCon, Twitch Con or Supanova, you can connect with your online followers in real life. As long as you give them the time and try to really converse with fellow attendees, there's a good chance that your followers become loyal fans.
Don't forget to bring your "business card" to these events. Giving them out to people you meet not only ensures they'd remember you once you go home, but promotes your Twitch channel as subtle as possible.
If you don't have a card yet, make one and include your real name, Twitch name, channel name, social media accounts, website URL, and other details you're comfortable to share.
Watch Other Streamers
When you were a newbie, you probably learned which streaming software is best for you and other beginner issues by watching other streamers.
If you're trying to get more Twitch viewers, continue watching other Twitch streamers and actually participating in their chats. Be genuine, interactive, respectful, and have fun. If you keep at it, other streamers will notice you eventually and get curious if you have a channel yourself, or better yet, plug your channel on their own channels for a much-needed boost.
Avoid self-promoting on other streamer's channels.
If you become friends with many Twitch streamers (and their followers), it's easier to spread the word about your own channel. It would be automatic for these streamers to advertise your events for free. And if you're up for guesting, you can participate in other people's streams, too! That would be an awesome way of introducing yourself to the Twitch community.
Invest in a Good Twitch Layout
Having a professional schedule for your channel is just one part of your business. Your channel should also "look the part," so make sure to spruce it up to match your content.
Plus, having a good Twitch layout will surely help in attracting more viewers.
Check out the Twitch layout of your favorite streamers and take note of the details you like. It should include a space for your webcam (at either the upper left or right corner), as well as all important info, such as name, social media, schedule, and chat box.
If you don't have any experience creating layouts, don't fret. You have a couple of options:
- Free Twitch layouts - Sites like TwitchOverlay, TipeeeStream, or WDFlat offer Twitch overlay, layouts, and other special effects completely free. The downside to going this route is that other Twitch streamers could also use them.
- Premium Overlays - Own3d.TV is a good example of a site that sells expertly-designed Twitch template packs complete with overlays, panels, banners, and other special widgets.
- Outsource on Fiverr - Hire a graphic designer, so he/she could turn your idea into reality. This could probably be the most expensive option, but it guarantees a unique template that no other Twitch streamer will have.
Be Strategic With Your Games
Some people think that Twitch streamers just "stream whatever game they like." Although this may seem to be the case, most popular streamers actually planned them out.
Being strategic means:
- Skipping popular games - Don't compete with hundreds of streamers playing the same game. Skip them when they're hot. In the same vein, you wouldn't want to be playing something no one is interested in as well. Stick to the middle ground and search for games being played by 10 or 20 streamers. You'll have more chances of being seen when a viewer tries to search for this game.
- Be on top of your chatbox and look out for requests. - When your viewers are requesting specific games, acknowledge their requests and decide if you're going to do them or not. If the request is for the same game, then maybe it will be worth it to check it out. If not, then let your viewers know you'd be playing it some other time instead.
- Be seen - If you're camera-shy, you may be in the wrong industry. Always turn your webcam on, so you'd get more viewers.
- Use keywords wisely - Include acronyms, nicknames, fanmade names of games in the title of your stream. You may also include your language (used throughout the stream), such as "Eng" for "English," Spanish, or any other language.
Stream for Several Hours
As you already know, working hard is the #1 ingredient for a successful Twitch channel. You need to have enough time to stream for several hours at a time. The main reason for this is that you'd like as many people to stumble into your channel and find you active.
Generally speaking, famous Twitch streamers are online for around 5 to 10 hours daily, sometimes longer if they're in the mood or hosting a special event.
If you're a beginner, it would be challenging to do beyond 5 hours, but know that if you stream as much as you can daily, you'll be able to get comfortable in front of the camera quicker and build a following faster as well.
Aside from maintaining a content schedule, you can also add a countdown screen that you can turn on an hour before your actual stream. This way, anyone who might have accidentally viewed your stream at this time would be intrigued and hopefully go back to your channel once you're live.
Make Stream Adjustments To Get More Consistent Views
Just as blogs have popular posts and not-so-popular ones, you'll learn sooner or later which content are winners and which don't bring much viewers.
Learn from the mistakes of past Twitch streamers. Here are some of the things you can do BEFORE you accidentally turn viewers away:
- Learn where and when to use call-to-action. Call to action can be something verbal, a link to subscribe, a button to push and other tasks you're encouraging your viewers to do. Whenever you're streaming, make sure to squeeze in a message asking viewers to click the follow button, join the chat, leave questions for you, find you on social media, and so on.
- Adjust your schedule as you see fit. If you've already created a weekly content schedule, but your numbers are not improving, tweak it regularly until you find the best times for you and your followers. This stagnant viewership could also be caused by a more popular streamer taking some of your viewers away from you.
- Use tools like Twitch Strike - This site gives you all the information you need to know how many channels are broadcasting vs amount of people viewing, as well as the most viewed games, most in-demand streamers, and so on.
- Switch between games. Choose games you love and switch between them. Make sure that you take note of your viewership numbers whenever you do this, so you'll be aware if your switch led to an increase or decrease in viewers.
- Optimize your title. There are two reasons you should do this: first is to encourage more people to click, and the other is to help Google bots rank your content appropriately in search engine results. And while we're on this issue, please don't try to click-bait, or trick people into clicking by using an interesting headline only to find out that the title has nothing to do with the actual content.
Stream on Other Sites
Here's a trick to get viewers on Twitch: simultaneously stream your Twitch event with other sites like YouTube and Mixer. This is possible with tools like Restream, and it virtually takes no additional effort after the initial set-up. Just make sure your streaming layout also indicates your Twitch name so those viewers whose attention you grabbed from other sites know where to find you again.
Sometimes, the niche you chose may just be too saturated on Twitch that it is impossible to compete with renowned names. It may even not be about other people being more talented than you; It could possibly just be that you have just started years later than them.
If Twitch seems like a difficult platform to break into, you could try moving to another platform like Facebook Gaming. Even popular streamers like FreyaFox have used to solve a problematic Twitch channel with stalled viewership numbers.
Use Content Syndication Strategies To Grab New Viewer's Attention
When you're a Twitch streamer, it means you're a content creator. One of the biggest ways you could attract more people to watch you is by spreading the word about what you do.
Ninja, one of the former Twitch top earners who was rumored to be recruited to join Microsoft's Mixer for $20 to $30 million, shared in the past that content syndication was the secret to his Twitch viewership numbers.
Some examples of content syndication include:
- Pick Snippets of Your Stream Recording to Turn into YouTube Videos - After your stream on Twitch, save your recording, pick and choose parts of the stream, and edit to turn into YouTube videos. Title appropriately, since YouTube's search engine is as advanced as its parent company, Google.
- Create your Own Site. Your Twitch account is technically owned by Twitch, so if ever the company gets bankrupt and packs up, "your channel" won't be yours anymore. Creating your own website solves this problem. Plus the site can now be your personal advertising space for all of your Twitch streams and events. Don't forget to add the Stream Status For Twitch plugin, so your website visitors could be updated with your Twitch schedule.
- Get Your Newsletter Up and Running. Not everyone is a fan of newsletters, but there is still a market for people who check updates via email. Make sure these people are able to receive news about your Twitch streams directly. Ask your followers to sign-up to your newsletters if they wish to get updates this way.
- Build a game-related site. If you're streaming only vintage games like Mario, Donkey Kong, and other similar games, build a site all about the games you play. Write cheats, tutorials, trivia, and all other tidbits of information that you think your followers would love. What's great about maintaining a site like this is that not only can you build authority over your genre, and give valuable content to your viewers, you also have a chance to add another income stream through ads.
Grow Your Stream By Connecting With Others
If you have a marketing background, you probably have an idea that networking can be an effective technique on how to attract viewers on twitch and you're definitely right.
As I stated before, you should take advantage of your existing network (family, friends, coworkers, peers, etc.) and ask them to stream your Twitch channel. Teach the non-techy people in your life how to do this step-by-step.
You can also connect with other people from the Twitch community by:
Networking should be a continuous marketing effort that you should include into your business plan. It ensures that your viewership never plateaus and that there is no way for your revenues to go but up.
Play in Tournaments, Host a Tournament, Become a Commentator
Here are some advanced techniques to explore if you know your way around Twitch, but is still trying to look for ways on how to get viewers on twitch to double in numbers.
- Join tournaments - Are you exceptionally good at playing a particular game? Join a tournament, get free publicity, and even get a chance to take home the prize. Sometimes, you don't even have to win to gain followers - your personality, looks, sense of humor, singing talent, or other quirks could be the reason new people begin to follow you.
- Host tournaments - If you don't have tournament-level skills yet, you can still expand your network by hosting a tournament yourself. Find sponsors for the prizes, or even shoulder it yourself. No matter how you do this, as long as you promote the event properly, viewers would surely pour in organically.
- Turn into a commentator - For those with the personality to become a commentator, join upcoming tournaments to meet new people and bring your name out into the world. You're not going to win any prizes this way, but you might just pull in new people to your own Twitch channel just by the way you comment on other people's game-playing.
Reach out to Bloggers or News sites
You can also network outside the Twitch community by looking for gaming bloggers, game-related news sites and other websites in your specific niche.
In most cases, third-party blogs and sites would only let you in if:
Once you're given access to these sites, you are able to reach more people and hopefully impress them enough so they'd follow you back to your Twitch channel.
Join a Stream Team
You're not the only one finding creative ways on how to increase viewers on Twitch. Find other streamers who are on the same boat as you.
Join a stream team and boost each others' viewership by:
- Giving streaming tips and gaming advice
- Promoting each other on different platforms like Facebook, Twitter, etc.
- Literally becoming each others' viewers
Stream team members do these favors for free, in hopes of getting back what they put in. If you don't participate much, don't expect your teammates to put effort in promoting you as well.
Appear On A Podcast
Podcasts may be an entirely different industry to streaming games, but they can merge if you're able to find podcasts that talk about gaming, Twitch, or any topic you have knowledge in. Once you do, ask how you can appear on their podcast.
Your first appearance doesn't have to be big. Like Twitch streams, you'll get better with practice, so start guesting on smaller podcasts. In time, you'd be surprised that the podcasts will be sending you requests to do an interview with them.
For some people, appearing on other people's podcasts is also the start of their own podcasts. They enjoyed the experience so much that they created their own podcasts.
Whether you're serving as a guest on another podcast, or hosting your own, make sure to include the link of your Twitch wherever possible. If possible, mention your stream in the podcast as well.
Get quoted in an article
This method may not be for beginners, but it can happen to any streamer.
If a school paper, local magazine, online magazine, or any other media reaches out to you for an interview, never skip this chance. Leave everything you have scheduled for that day and give them the time.
As with most cases today, e-mail is how questions are sent, so your answers would probably go back that way as well.
Before the story is printed (on paper) or published (online), make sure to request your name or Twitch channel be included in your quote. Doing so could bring curious readers to your Twitch channel and check out some of your streams.
Become someone's testimonial
It can be tricky to use this technique of how to get twitch viewers, but if you've been working hard trying to improve your numbers, this could be doable.
Let's say you've changed your Twitch overlay recently with a paid template, share how it helped improve viewership or bring changes to your streaming routine. You can also share how the data from Twitch Strike helped you decide the content to stream. And so on.
Reach out to the company and tell them the improvements you experienced with their product or service. There's a good chance they'll use your message as a testimonial and share it to their audience.