Always Assume to Problem Lies within Yourself
It is easy to blindly follow the direction of the gurus without truly understanding the mindset. You can do exactly what they are telling you, but simply just going through the steps does not mean viewers are going to flock to you. It’s not an easy thing, but 99% of the time when viewing new streamers who complain they are not getting viewers following all the tips and guides simply just have boring content. Sure, you get a schedule down pat, the stream setup looks great, but it’s the presentation of the content that sucks.
When new streamers come and ask why they are not seeing growth the first thing we look for is their social media presence. Most of the time their Youtube channel has 6 videos of raw gameplay with no or very basic editing. No great titles, no eye-catching thumbnail, really no real effort put in. Looking at their Twitch VOD’s it’s hours on hours of gameplay with music with almost no talking, just dead air over the mic. We quickly come to the conclusion you gave up before you really even getting started, and viewers pick up on that quickly and move onto the next streamer to watch.
The tip here is to not cut corners. It’s not Twitch’s or YouTube’s fault you are not seeing growth, it’s time to self-reflect and analyze your content plan to derive what is not working and make the appropriate changes. Take the time to learn new skills whether it be video editing, photoshop, or simply being charismatic in front of the camera. Sit down before your stream and come up with your content plan for the day, then go stand in front of the mirror and practice discussing the topic paying attention to your facial expressions. You may not get it right the first couple of times, but with practice and persistence, you will find what works. Effort is the majority of the fight here, cutting corners and being lazy will only lead to wasted time and failure.
Observe and Learn from Others
This may seem like odd advice, but do you have a streamer that you simply cannot watch, yet they have a bunch of viewers and a healthy social media following. This is the perfect learning opportunity. Putting your spite aside, watch their stream and analyze why it is that they have so many people invested in them. They’re obviously doing something successful to draw in loyal viewers, they’re successful for a reason. Let go of your pride, and figure out what it is.
In order to build an audience, you need to put your mind into what they are looking for when clicking streams to watch. It’s not all gameplay and music, it’s usually commentary and the person’s outlook on certain topics. You need to figure out what content you need to deliver for those viewers to come click on your stream instead. This is a valuable practice to understand and promote your own channel growth.
Find Your Own Niche
Here you need to figure out how you can stand out. Experimenting with different ideas, reflecting on what skills you have or what experiences you have been through, or simply ret learning something entirely new. The intent here is to find clever ways to deliver content that is truly unique and engaging that nobody has been doing yet.
Simply posting highlight clips of your best gameplay is not going to give you huge numbers coming into your stream to watch. Every other streamer on any platform (Twitch, Youtube, Facebook) has already been doing that for years. If somebody is on Youtube browsing highlights for a certain game ask yourself, are they really going to click on your highlight video over the popular big brand streamers? The answer is no! If I want to view sick FPS game highlights, I’m going to Shroud, NickMercs, TimtheTatman not some video with 20 views. What is the reason to watch you over say Shroud? The answer to this question is something that you can only solve.
The point here is amazing gameplay simply does not bring a flock of viewers to streamers anymore. There has to be additional content from the streamer to bring in larger audiences. Everybody on Twitch is sitting at their desk playing video games, what value do you bring to an audience that others do not? That answer is your niche that sets you apart.
Do not get Complacent
In other words, do not get comfortable and start coasting. Being a streamer is an ever-evolving career. What works today may not work as well next year. Should you truly find success, others will notice and jump onto the bandwagon to follow the latest hype and trend. You need to stay vigilant in keeping your motivation up and staying ahead of the curve.
You can combat this by creating a content pipeline. You found something that is working for you, now sit down and plan what we will call “episodes” or “seasons” for that content. Work with graphic artists changing up themes and overlays to match the timeframes of the content. You can also plan different variations of the content, changing it up on a schedule you set. The key point here is to have a plan how you are going to change it up from time to time to keep your content fresh and keep viewers engaged coming back for more.
This will also keep you motivated by having something to look forward to as you work on the projects and also hype up your community by hinting you are working on something new.
Stop Focusing on Growth
This is an important one, stop focusing on getting more followers, more subscribers, and more viewers. You should be focusing on improvement. The results of improvement will bring in more viewers, followers, and subscribers. This is a mindset you must adopt.
You can advertise on social media all day long and get the word out that you are a streamer and go live during this time every day. Sure, people may see it, but the people gained as part of your community will be minimal. Instead, save some energy on your social media crusade and put that time into self-improving your charisma skills or content plan.
Even if you only make small improvements one by one over many weeks, those small improvements will eventually add to a giant difference from before and after to allow your streams to deserve higher number viewership. There’s no quick start to fame, it’s a slow process with a lot of work to get there.
So stop worrying about how many followers you have or how many subscribers you have. Those are literally the worst metrics to focus on when starting as a small-time streamer. Focus on improvement in your streamer’s weakest areas and with time, eventually, the quality of your stream and content will bring in the audience it then deserves.
These five things are the building blocks and foundation that we would attribute to the success of building your own unique streaming community. None of this is about network getting to know as many like-minded people in the industry and relying on somebody else’s hard work to gain exposure. It is all about yourself as a creator and, in general, that’s all it needs to be. You are selling your content to an audience, not bandwagoning onto somebody else’s fame.
This is simply all that you need to know. It takes effort. Most streamers, even with amazing talent, still fail simply because they give up too easily. This is hard. We can be transparent here sharing the exact steps for success and not worry about giving out the “secret sauce” because, at the end of the day, we know most people will not put forth the effort laid out here and call it quits anyway. It’s people who have what it takes to work hard enough, put in those extra hours, and put forth the work ethic when things are difficult with little results who ultimately win in the long run. Even the most popular streamers have stories of when they were starting out in their parents’ house with 5-10 viewers for years before being where they are today.
We hope this guide can help steer you on a focused path forward. Thanks for reading and until next time, stream on!
Need some tips on staying motivated while working on improvements?
Check out our Tips for Becoming a Successful Streamer guide.