Many Twitch streamers dream of turning pro. But how they get there is a bit of a fuzzy process. How do you know that you’ve made it? How can you apply to become an affiliate or a partner? And how do you make a big deal out of staple events like channel raids and new viewers without using special tools? Well, Twitch has just answered those questions. It’s rolling out some new tools that not only track your progress towards getting paid but streamline some of the previously required chatbots or outside streaming software.
Let’s back this up a bit and explain Twitch for those of you non-gamers. Twitch is the world’s leading social video platform and community for the video game culture. It has 15 million daily active users who gather to interact with others about video games, music, the arts and their lives. People enjoy watching Twitch because they want to see others who are highly skilled or extremely entertaining. Twitch is an honest way for people to decide if they want to purchase certain video games. Twitch is a social experience that relies on audio and chat to enable creators and their audiences to interact in real-time about everything related to gaming.
How has Twitch improved? To start, you now have achievements that tell you how close you are to hitting the goals you need to reach the affiliate or partner levels, such as the number of times you stream in a given period and your typical viewer count. Twitch will give you a statistical summary after every stream so you’ll know which achievements you’ve reached, where your traffic is coming from and other data that can help you grow your audience.
Twitch is also making a bigger deal of “rituals”. Which are those everyday occurrences in the life of a regular streamer. There’s now a formal “/raid” command that automatically hosts another channel and drives your viewers there, so it’s easy to show affection for a fellow streamer once your own stream is wrapping up for the day. There are even raid stats and moderation tools to help you identify where that flood of new viewers is coming from. If there’s a new user, they can let everyone know and get a special welcome. You can offer “premieres” where you host the viewing of a pre-recorded series.
Yes – there is an improvement for viewers also. You can finally gift subscriptions. If you have a friend who can’t afford to subscribe or you’re just feeling generous, you can give someone a month of access to any subscription-enabled channel at any tier level. This won’t auto-renew, but it can be helpful if you want someone to participate in a subscribers-only event or just help them use a favourite emote. Streamers can use this to hand out prizes, for that matter.
You will have to wait until November for achievements, summaries, raids, and welcomes for new users. Premieres, rooms, and gifting are due sometime in the fourth quarter of the year. What’s clear, though, is that Twitch knows its success hinges around convincing people to stream regularly.