Twitch is one of the most popular live-streaming services on the Internet. It’s popularized among the gaming community and attracts a large number of viewers everyday. However, many brands avoid marketing on Twitch. In reality, you should seriously consider what this streaming platform can do for your brand.
What, Exactly, Is Twitch?
Twitch.tv is an online video platform similar to YouTube made popular by the gaming community. Visitors can watch their favorite “celebrities” live during game play and interact with one another in real-time.
In many ways, those who stream live content to Twitch are just as engaging as those who create content for YouTube. In fact, many of them will produce videos on both platforms.
Why Would You Market on a Gaming Site?
The gaming community is just as diverse as any other. The only real difference is the overall medium. Many people are just as attracted to watch live game play as enjoying certain television shows.
Who’s to say what fine entertainment is other than the one watching? After all, not everyone likes the same content on television.
For many visitors, it’s more than just watching someone play a game. It’s about watching the person who is playing. Many Twitch streamers are found to be quite entertaining, insightful and engaging. It’s the personality of the streamer that drives many to watch.
Twitch also utilizes channels outside of gaming. While it’s usually the most prominent reason why people visit the site, the industries and topics covered by Twitch continue to grow and expand.
Because the audience of Twitch is so diverse, many brands are starting to realize its potential. Here are 10 reasons why you should seriously consider building a Twitch marketing strategy of your own.
1. Massive Millennial Engagement
Millennials are the target audience of many brands nowadays. This is because most of them are influencing most markets today as they begin to come of age. Coincidentally, millennials make up the majority of the audience watching Twitch.
The gaming site has more than 100 million active monthly viewers. That’s nearly a third of everyone in the world who uses Twitter. While it’s not as popular as many other social media platforms, few offer the same level of live engagement as Twitch when it comes to millennials.
The only imbalance from a marketing perspective is the number of males versus female watchers. Although three-quarters of Twitch viewers are male, that still means more than 830,000 females watch on a daily basis.
When it comes to reaching the younger audience for almost any purpose, few systems are as concentrated. This means many brands who market specifically to millennials have potential to reach a higher return-on-investment when contracting Twitch influencers. Of course, the product itself is going to play a role in whether a campaign is successful or not.
2. Private Contracts with Streamers
Those who watch games on Twitch have needs just like anyone else. While a lot of them will be more susceptible to gaming equipment, software and mobile apps, these are not the only products you’ll find advertised on the live streaming system.
Take Achievement Hunter, for example. This group of game-playing guys are often sponsored by Blue Apron, Omaha Steaks and DollarShaveClub.com. None of these companies belong to the gaming industry, yet all of them regularly sponsor Twitch streamers.
Why would these businesses advertise during a live stream of game play? The same reason why companies throw money at YouTubers, Twitter users and Facebook personalities: influencer marketing. Using the right social personality has potential to make a big impact in sales and leads.
Consumers are more likely to trust social media content over traditional ads by seven times. In other words, it’s often more effective to use a social influencer like a Twitch broadcaster to reach a target audience.
3. Pre-Roll Ads
Like YouTube, Twitch uses pre-roll ads for brands. This means you don’t have to worry about settling on any one Twitch streamer to market your products. All streams start with the pre-roll and streamers can set their broadcasts to include more throughout the live feed.
The growth of Twitch has prompted brand names like Netflix, Apple, Nike and even Kellogg’s to advertise on the site. Because the type of content is so closely monitored by Twitch, it’s often a safe way to market.
A lot of brands prefer this method as opposed to YouTube’s lack-luster performance when it comes to governing over creators and their content. It’s less likely your ad will show up on Twitch next to offensive video material.
This isn’t saying that Twitch doesn’t have its share of people who try to abuse the system. However, Twitch is fairly strict and keeps a vigil over its live streamers to a degree that is often more efficient than YouTube.
4. Worldwide Market
Twitch is home to a variety of game players from all over the world. This gives you access to a wide scope of viewers. Although Twitch doesn’t have the massive appeal of systems like YouTube, average users still spend just over an hour and a half watching content per day from across the globe.
Of course this only helps those who are looking at a global market instead of a local one. Still, finding a good fit for an influencer on this platform can easily get your brand in front of thousands of people instantly in specific locations.
On average, there are more than 622,000 viewers on Twitch. At any given time, you can reach a large number of people from all over with a single ad especially if you find a good influencer to support.
Again, I would have to point out the big corporations that have invested in Twitch marketing. Its global companies like Apple who find value in reaching the millennial audience you should watch. It’s all about following the money, and Twitch is demonstrating constant growth on a worldwide scale.
5. It’s Not Often Tapped
Twitch isn’t as saturated with business ads like other platforms. It may be beneficial to you as it provides a method to reach an audience who may be untapped by your competitors. If your business is looking for the “new” audience, you may not find a better platform.
Twitch isn’t merely about video games. It’s an expanding system that includes a variety of entertainment. In fact, some channels promote cooking shows instead of game play. This means the platform is becoming more friendly to a variety of industries in terms of marketing.
A lack of saturation also means your ad will have more of an impact on the audience, and possibly in greater frequency. Whether it’s an ad roll or a sponsorship, getting your name out there more often than the competition makes an impact.
6. Twitch is Deeply Social
Social media marketing tools can greatly benefit any brand. The biggest driving point behind Twitch is the social element. Sure, people love Facebook and Twitter for the same reason. However, those systems are not running in real-time. They are message-based, which means it could be hours if not days before you see a response.
Twitch allows users to directly interact with the streamer in real-time. Ask a question and you could very well get an answer almost immediately. Some streamers on Twitch allow the viewers to decide what games to play, what restaurants to review or even locations around town to live-stream a visit.
It’s this social interaction that gives the platform its power and why so many people watch broadcasters. This engagement is why some experts believe Twitch to be a superior system when it comes to audience retention and loyalty.
The broadcaster isn’t the only one being social, either. Many like the idea of sharing space with others who have similar interests as the streamer brings an audience together. Many of the people in the chat room will go on to create friendships both on and offline.
7. Flexible Branding Options
It’s not difficult to put a bit of money into the ad pre-roll for Twitch to basically market your brand. However, the system is flexible to where you can be more creative when engaging the audience.
For instance, the gaming headset manufacturer Turtle Beach often gives free hardware to streamers as long as the brand is mentioned. This is because it gives the audience a chance to see the merchandise in actions. The same can be said about a myriad of clothing companies who adorn broadcasters for a shout-out.
It doesn’t always take money to market to the audience. Sometimes offering a physical incentive to the streamer is just as productive as a paid ad.
Another example is seen when Achievement Hunter had a “steak cam” during a live stream. The team barbecued Omaha Steaks during a broadcast of game play. It was a fun way to demonstrate the product.
The point is you don’t always have to spend a large amount of money to get your brand in front of a receptive audience.
8. Constant Growth
In 2012, Twitch saw about 20 million monthly viewers. Each year, this figure has nearly doubled. Like many other social channels, this one continues to gain popularity over time.
The growth of the social site is an identifier that it will continue to be around for quite some time. And thanks to the introduction of other elements that are outside of gaming, the audience is continuing to be more diversified. In reality, I don’t see why Twitch couldn’t directly compete with YouTube in terms of viewership over the next decade.
No one likes to invest marketing into a platform that is dying out. The proven development of Twitch should be enough to at least convince you that it’s no longer considered a fad. Since its creation as Justin.tv in 2011, the site has been home to a myriad of major gaming events and consistent improvement.
In fact, Twitch has about 40% more average active streamers than YouTube Gaming Live.
9. Using It Yourself
You don’t have to be a gamer to benefit from streaming on Twitch. In reality, many brands embrace live feeds for panels, show floor interactions and press conferences. As long as you can make it entertaining to watch, there is a great deal of possibility for creating a strong brand on the platform.
The key element is to make it an entertaining broadcast. Because it is live, you won’t be able to benefit from most editing tactics. In some ways, this makes it a bit more difficult to manage.
Think of filming an episode of a show in front of a live studio audience, which just happens to reach all corners of the planet.
Another point to note is how charities are often part of the experience on Twitch, as well. More than $65 million has been raised for various charities thanks to the contributions of broadcasters and viewers.
A lot of major brands have their own Twitch channel. Most of them are in the gaming industry in some form or another. However, it goes to show you don’t need to rely on a streamer to influence an audience if you can do it yourself.
10. It’s Live
Live events are some of the most viewed elements whether it’s on television or online. It’s being a part of something that draws many to experience events first hand that often draws a crowd. Whether it’s American football or the Olympics, live feeds draw an audience.
That’s the premise behind Twitch and why it’s such a powerful tool. It’s not just gaming, especially since developers have included channels for things like Anime and fitness. It’s a platform that is directly interactive and engaging. A viewers voice has meaning, especially when you have a streamer who constantly interacts with the audience.
This is perhaps one of the primary reasons why any brand should consider Twitch stream marketing. In a world where interactivity matters, few platforms have this level of engagement. And it’s this engagement that has greater potential for an audience to act on your ad.
It’s Not Just About Gaming
Although Twitch centers around games, it’s not the only reason people visit the site. The personality of the streamer plays a key role in attracting a dedicated audience. It’s all about delivering an engaging and interactive experience. In some ways, these influencers are just as effective as using a creator on YouTube.
Don’t discredit Twitch simply because it’s a gaming site. Realize its potential to reach a massive millennial audience.