What is Twitch?

Twitch is a live streaming service, with its main focus being video game streaming and other types of streaming. Twitch users can set up an account and live stream themselves playing video games, playing music, or even just going about their day as an “in real life” stream, which also includes Twitch Pulse.

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Ways to make money on Twitch

In case you want to dedicate yourself to streaming

In case you want to dedicate yourself to streaming and earn money with Twitch fully, you can choose from the following options:

  1. Direct donations: You can add a personalized link to your Paypal account in the chat or create a donation panel so that viewers can make donations to your channel.
  2. Affiliate Program: On Twitch, you can become an affiliate if you meet the following requirements:
    1. Stream 8 hours in the last 30 days
    2. Stream 7 different days in the previous 30 days
    3. With an average of 3 or more simultaneous viewers in the last 30 days
    4. Get and keep at least 50 followers.

By doing so, you will get the option for your followers to subscribe. Twitch offers subscriptions of $4.99, $9.99, and $24.99, and streamers get 50% of the profits.

You will also access the bits to receive donations with this currency from your followers. Also, if your channel has grown enough, you will be able to earn advertising revenue.

  1. Partner Program: In addition to all the affiliate program benefits, partners have more customization options and tools for the channel. These are the requirements to become a member:
    1. Stream 25 hours in the last 30 days
    2. Stream 12 different days during the previous 30 days
    3. Get an average of 75 viewers in the last 30 days.

7. Add Affiliate Links

Bloggers all over the world make six-figure incomes per month through affiliate marketing. And, while that is amazing, the great news is that Twitch users have the ability to do the same.

Individual Twitch users can form affiliate partnerships with companies, attach the link to their stream, and then get paid when their followers use the link to purchase the item. It’s a plain and simple way to make money.

Most affiliate partnerships on Twitch are for video game products, technology products, or video game related merchandise.

However, if you can’t cultivate a technology-related affiliate partnership, there are many other companies who are eager to offer this opportunity. And, any affiliate link is better than no affiliate link!

2. Create Merchandise

The suggestion of creating merchandise in order to make money on Twitch is not necessarily for users just starting out.

However, for users who have large, dedicated following merchandise can be an extremely effective way to pad your pockets. Traditional merchandise such as hats, hoodies, and t-shirts are all wonderful options for gaming merchandise. For users really looking to give their revenue a boost, they can add video game accessories such as controllers to that mix.

When creating merchandise for your followers it is

When creating merchandise for your followers it is suggested to do so in conservative amounts until you know you have a dedicated enough following to buy it.

The Twitch Partner Program

OK, so we’ve covered the basics of Twitch. With a sizable following you can apply for the Twitch Partner Program. That lets viewers subscribe to your channel, earning you money in the process. Again, you’ll share revenue with Twitch, but when you have subscribers you make money each month, whether or not those subscribers view videos and ads. As a partner, you also have access to help with starting a merchandise campaign, plus more control over video quality.

In exchange for paying a subscription fee for access to your channel, viewers get access to special perks like subscriber-only chats and unrestricted access to your broadcast’s archives. They even get special emoticons they can use on your channel.

Of the site’s over 8.4 million active streamers, around 27,000 are partners. Those are pretty tough odds, but Twitch gives guidance to potential applicants. The site says it’s looking for broadcasters who “engage their chat, develop strong communities, and find creative ways to stand out from the crowd.”

According to the Twitch partnership application page, the company evaluates applications for partnerships on a case-by-case basis. However, all  partners must conform to Twitch’s Terms of ServiceCommunity Guidelines and DMCA Guidelines. DMCA stands for the Digital Millennium Copyright Act.

Ad integration

Ads make up a small proportion of where proceeds for a Twitch channel come from. There’s a preroll that’s enabled every time a user enters your channel to watch the stream and you can set ads to play during breaks so you don’t do a chair stream.

Many of Twitch’s most popular streamers are now contractually obligated to run a certain amount of advertisements during their broadcasts. For some high-profile streamers, the ad-breaks are only 60 seconds each hour, but many are required to run more based on an agreement with Twitch.

How to Earn Money on Twitch with a Regular Audience

Once you’ve built up a regular audience, it’ll be easier to make money on Twitch using the methods outlined above. Plus, it’s possible to make a little extra money in two more ways:

  • Brand sponsorships
  • Merchandise

Brand Sponsorships

You don’t need to be a Twitch Affiliate or Partner to land sponsorship deals (although that would help) — all you do need to have a relatively large engaged audience that brands will want to reach.

You can promote all sorts of brands and products to your Twitch audience, too — from gaming hardware and fashion brands to drinks and musical instruments.

Brands typically reach out to streamers they want to work with, but there’s nothing stopping you from pitching brands directly.

You may also want to check out services that set up sponsorship deals between brands and streamers, such as PowerSpike and HelloGamers.

2. Regular payments from viewers on streaming platforms

Getting an occasional tip from your viewers is great, but regular payments are better. These payments will usually net you a couple of dollars each, but if you can get enough of them, they add up. You’ll need to meet certain requirements to enable this kind of support, as platforms reserve it for members of their content creator programs.

Here’s an overview of recurring payment features on the major platforms:

  • YouTube has a channel membership program that allows users to subscribe to its channels with monthly payments. To open your YouTube channel (where you group your videos) to this opportunity, you need to be in the YouTube Partner Program and meet additional eligibility requirements.
  • Twitch has a paid subscription program that lets you earn from paid subscriptions if you’re an Affiliate or Partner. Your viewers get one subscription for free through Twitch Prime, or they can pay for them using PayPal, Amazon Pay, or credit cards.
  • Facebook Gaming extended its Fan Subscriptions featureto Level Up gaming content creators.You must achieve a certain number of returning weekly viewers, and the feature is only available in certain regions.

If the platform allows it, you should make content that’s exclusive to your subscribers. It’s a nice way to show your most loyal viewers that you appreciate their support. Also, remember to give a shoutout to people when they subscribe and a mention on their subscription anniversaries.

4. Revenue from ads

Advertising revenue powers half the internet, including Google services and Facebook. Why not you too? If you join the right streaming platform or social network, you can start earning some decent ad money.

When you start broadcasting live videos on a specific platform, like YouTube or Facebook, you may be able to take advantage of their advertising programs. Here’s a breakdown of the different types of in-stream ads that are usually available:

  • Pre-roll ads: These ads play as soon as a viewer clicks on your stream. They have to view the ad before they can start watching your content.
  • Mid-roll ads: Mid-roll ads play in the middle of your live stream. Your stream continues in a smaller window while the ad takes up most of the screen.
  • Display and overlay ads: These types of ads usually pop up as banners or small cards on top of your stream.

If you want to generate revenue with ads, join these platforms:

  • YouTubeoffers pre-roll and mid-roll ads, as well as display and overlay ads.
  • Facebook offers mid-roll ads if you meet the viewership number criteria.
  • Twitchoffers in-stream ads, as well as display and native ad opportunities.

Advertising in live streaming is a hot topic and a regular cause of controversy. Try to exercise as much control as you can over the advertisements displayed during your streams or on your channel. Also, remember that viewers can use ad-blocking software to prevent some ads from showing. Therefore, using ads as the sole method to monetize your live streaming may not be the best idea.

Tips for Succeeding as a Twitch Streamer

A platform that allows you to make money by live streaming video games sounds too good to be true. While it’s obviously possible to make money on Twitch, there’s more to it than just sitting down in front of a webcam. Here are some tips that will give you the best chance for success.

#1. Be Memorable and Different

There are thousands of Twitch channels that are streaming very similar content. The best and most effective way to have success is to stand out and be different. You need to give viewers a reason to watch and follow you.

#2. Play More Than One Game

Some Twitch channels focus on a specific game and others showcase a broader range of topics. While there are pros and cons to each approach, streaming only one game will limit your potential audience. You’ll also be linked to the success and popularity of that one game. Branching out will give you more opportunities and a higher ceiling.

#3. Network

Networking can be one of the keys to success with a Twitch channel, like any other type of business. Linnea Labs, a PR executive at Pearl Lemon and a former Twitch Affiliate who is no longer using the platform, told us that most of your profits will come from external third parties and sponsors. So work to get connected with others in the industry, including other streamers and brands that want to reach your audience.

#4. Use Other Platforms as Well

Many of the most successful Twitch users are also on other platforms like YouTube and TikTok. Although there are significant differences between platforms, you’re able to leverage your success and ultimately increase your earnings.

Learn more:

MakingMoney on Twitch: Gaining Followers

OK, so you’ve set up a Twitch channel and you’re ready to start broadcasting your game play. First off, it’s a good idea to decide on a tone that can help create your personal brand on Twitch.

To help you establish that tone, consider a few guiding questions: Do you want your channel to be funny or serious? Are you about helping other gamers, competing with other gamers or making viewers laugh? What kind of audience do you want to attract? Will you be the best gamer or the funniest gamer?

The videos themselves aren’t the only way you can reach viewers. Twitch also has a chat feature. Viewers might hit up your chat room to ask you questions about game play, or to get to know you better. Responding to viewers in friendly, helpful ways can help you retain and grow your following.

Another important factor in your success on Twitch is the games you choose to broadcast yourself playing. Not surprisingly, there’s a lot more competition with major games that lots of broadcasters are playing. If you want to be the go-to broadcaster for major releases, more power to you. But you’ll probably have an easier time standing out if you broadcast games that fewer people are playing.

What Do Twitch Streamers Make Per-Follower?

As previously mentioned, Twitch streamers don’t necessarily earn money on a per-follower basis. More followers doesn’t always equate to more money, as anybody has the ability to follow a channel without ever having to tune in to watch a stream.

Consistent viewership is far more important than high follower numbers, as it ensures that streamers will actually be seen. Discoverability on Twitch is solely driven by a channel’s current view numbers, so follower count isn’t the goal that you should strive towards; some streamers do the “follow-for-follow” method, pay for followers, or have fake followers, which may look good on paper but is worthless in the long run.

However, if we were to roughly estimate, a Twitch Streamer could probably expect $1 to $1.50 per average viewer per month, if they were to stream 5 days a week. But again, this is a very rough estimate. If you happen to have viewers that are extremely generous, then this number is probably higher. If you’re less fortunate and have viewers that rarely ever subscribe or tip, then this number may be lower.

How to Build an Audience on Twitch

If you really want to know how to make money on Twitch, it all comes down to this: grow a sizable audience.

Let me be honest: This takes an enormous amount of time and work — and even then, success is far from guaranteed.

Still, how can you build a community and increase your Twitch viewership? Here are 4 best practices to follow.

1. Find Your Niche

To attract attention, you need a way to stand out from the crowd. So, look for ways to carve out a niche for yourself. 

For example, perhaps you become an expert at a new game that’s growing in popularity. Or maybe you’re not the best gamer, but you’re witty and fun. 

2. Build a Following on Other Social Media Accounts

Compared to many social media platforms, Twitch offers very few ways to promote your streams. So, venture out to other platforms to build an audience.

For example, you could build your audience on YouTube or grow an Instagram following. Then you can promote your Twitch streams to your followers.

Take Real Summit1g — he often shares stream highlights on his Instagram account:

3. Network with Other Streamers

Networking and supporting other ambitious and popular streamers is a great way to generate new opportunities.

For instance, if you engage with another streamer and are active in their chat, the streamer and their viewers may visit your channel and follow you.

Plus, if you build friendships with other streamers you can plug each other’s channels and host each other. This will help cross-pollinate your audiences and attract new viewers.

4. Engage Viewers

Whenever a new viewer joins your stream, you have a golden opportunity to convert them into a true fan who’ll subscribe and promote your stream to their friends.

So, engage them in every way you can.

Ask viewers questions, respond to chat comments, crack jokes — ultimately, create highly entertaining content to get viewers to tune in regularly.

How to Get Paid on Twitch

Twitch pays its affiliates once they reach a pre-tax amount of at least $100. The account balance can also include money from subscribers and other Twitch monetization methods, but it will not include sales from merchandise or donations through third parties.

If that amount is not reached, Twitch will roll over the money to the following month. Once the pre-tax amount is $100 and over, Twitch will pay 15 days after the end of that month, and it takes about 3-5 days for the money to enter your account.

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