If you’re selling something that targets a young demographic, then Twitch might be a useful part of your marketing mix. This is certainly is so if you target young males who love gaming.
However, if you do decide to get involved with Twitch influencer marketing, it’s essential that you pick the right streamers for your game (or other product). Not all Twitch streamers are of equal value to your marketing campaign.
It is highly possible that you may never have heard of this social streaming platform, Twitch. It isn’t as well-known as networks such as YouTube or Instagram. However, it’s surprisingly popular with its young, predominantly game-playing male target audience.
It is an obvious platform for brands connected with gaming to make connections and sponsor relevant broadcasters.
There are between 2.2 and 3.2 million monthly broadcasters. Although Twitch still has a strong games bias, you will find broadcasters in other niches, such as cooking, art appreciation, and video podcasts.
Topics covered on Twitch are widening, and this now creates opportunities for brands with no obvious gaming connection. Brands wishing to be seen as trendy and forward-thinking have great opportunities to become Twitch sponsors and work with typically highly engaged audiences.
It can be challenging for brands to connect with streamers, however, because it is a tight community. Streamers value their audience immensely and won’t promote products unless they feel they will be of value to their fans.
Not that Twitch users are more averse to sponsorship than on other social networks. 82% believe that sponsorships are good for the gaming industry, and 80% are open to brands sponsoring a specific gamer or team. They just have to be the right brand with the right streamer with the right audience.
Because Twitch’s main point of difference is live streaming, influencer marketing on Twitch also involves live video. You can’t just provide an existing video to a Twitch influencer and hope they will upload it.
It can be particularly effective when you have a product that a live streamer can use while broadcasting. Games have a distinct advantage, and many of the top gaming companies make deals with big-name streamers to play their game for a period. Indeed, EA recently allegedly paid Ninja $1 million to play Apex Legends for a day.
Ninja has recently ditched Twitch and signed an exclusive deal with Mixer. Twitch has made Ninja’s Twitch page to generate traffic to other Twitch streamers, with a Mario reference “The Ninja you’re looking for is in another castle.”
Although Ninja has left, Twitch is still the largest live streaming video platform.
Besides games, you can live stream using other products, such as food and drink. You could probably even use it to show off hair products and fashion, assuming that you can find a steamer with a suitable audience.
Other types of Twitch promotion include shout-outs, giveaways, and the unboxing of products.
Twitch has more than 15 million daily active users. 55% of them are aged between 18 and 34. 81.5% of Twitch users are male.
This predominance of male users is rare for social media. Sites such as Instagram and Pinterest have a strong female bias. Even Facebook users are 53% female vs. 47% male.
This provides opportunities for marketers to promote male-focused brands.
Twitch is also more youth-oriented than many of the other social networks. Generation Z has moved from the networks they perceive as being used by their parents – Facebook in particular. They prefer to be where their parents aren’t. Twitch has been able to take advantage of this rebellious feeling, and this could be highly beneficial for youthful brands.
Twitch has even troubled video-leader, YouTube, with Twitch being more active than YouTube Gaming Live. The top gamers tend to stream live on Twitch and then upload highlights videos to their YouTube channels.
Another feature of Twitch is that its users remain on the site for much more extended periods than the other social channels. Indeed, they spend 95 minutes per day on Twitch on average.
Surprisingly, 4 pm EST is the optimal Twitch peak viewing time. The image of gamers in dark rooms in the early hours of the morning is not always right. Clearly, many teenagers come straight home from school and log onto their Twitch account.
If you target the type of people who use Twitch, then you should seriously consider it an essential part of your marketing armory.
Although best known for its gaming channels, Twitch is gradually growing its non-gaming section. Two of the fastest-growing niches on Twitch are “in real life” videos (IRLs) and live streams of TV shows.
Non-gaming brands who see the value of Twitch streamer sponsorship include Gillette (worked with Dr. Disrespect to promote their razors) and KFC (with Dr. Lupo to sell chicken wings.
Technically, IRL doesn’t exist as a category anymore. Twitch has tried hard to widen its customer base and last year replaced the overarching IRL category with ten new channels:
- Hobbies & Crafts
- Food & Drink
- Music & Performing Arts
- Beauty & Body Art
- Science & Technology
- Just Chatting
- Travel & Outdoors
- Sporting & Fitness
- Tabletop RPGs
- Special Events
- Talk Shows & Podcasts
This makes it much easier for non-gamers to find content on Twitch now, and non-gaming sponsors to find suitable sponsors with whom to work.
Baked Earth has written about some of the more unusual channels that use Twitch live streaming for non-gaming purposes. Some of his favorite channels include:
- 419STREAM – a live camera inside cannabis grow tent (probably not a good idea to watch this one in class or at work)
- Dutchsinse (Official) – showing global seismic and earthquake activity
- Hitch – the experiences of a guy (Travis) while hitchhiking and couch surfing across the world
- Deadflip – Twitch-streamed pinball
- Cnotbusch – sculpting amazing statues and figurines out of clay
- DevWars – “Esports for developers.” DevWars usually pits two teams against one another in a three-round coding competition.
As with all forms of influencer marketing, Twitch sponsorship relies on you finding the right streamers. There is little point in using a streamer whose audience will have little interest in your game or product. Likewise, you need to ensure that any streamers with whom you work have similar values to those your business follows. For example, if you portray yourself as a family-friendly business, there is little point setting up a sponsorship with an edgy, foul-mouthed streamer, who is anything but PC. Some of the brands working with Logan Pool on YouTube discovered this when he filmed himself beside a dead body in a tree last year.
The first thing you must ask yourself is, what is your marketing goal? What is the reason that you want to become involved with Twitch live streaming sponsorship?
You then should look closely at your game or product type. What types of streamers will have an audience who could be interested in your game/product? For instance, if you are selling a product that would appeal to 11-14-year-old boys, there is a high likelihood that these boys like the game Fortnite. In that case, you will look for suitable Fortnite players who stream on Twitch.
If your product is more sports-oriented, however, your potential customers are more likely to play sporting videogames, such as NBA 2K19, Skatebird, or FIFA 19.
The top non-gaming category is Music and Performing Arts.
There are multiple ways that you can find Twitch influencers, from manually searching through the site to using Twitter to find Twitch followers (it may seem counterintuitive to use one social network to find influencers on another, but it does work for many people.
You can use data from Twitch’s API to help identify influencers. 10% of streamers account for 95% of the viewers on Twitch. So, you can use the Twitch API to identify these top 10% of streamers by a variety of metrics such as concurrent viewers or channel followers.
Probably the best way, however, is to use SocialBook, which includes many relevant statistics to help you decide on the best Twitch streamers for your brand.
As with all marketing, your goals will affect the type of influencer you’re looking for. Therefore, you may choose to focus on different factors depending on what will be most useful for a particular campaign.
Some of the areas you should consider include:
- The genre someone streams in. If they are non-gamers, do they have a sufficiently large audience to warrant your investment?
- For gamers, what types of games do they play? Does your target market take an interest in that type of game? Would your potential customers take an interest in a hard-core shooter, for example? Are the more into simulation games? Do you aim to sell to younger boys who are absorbed in Minecraft?
- Will the audience be interested in your product? Most male gamers love fast foods but have less interest in health products. Other categories (particularly the non-gaming ones), may work in reverse.
- Does a stream have reasonable viewing numbers? These are commonly called average concurrent viewership (AVC). Twitch streamers have AVS ranging from 50,000 down to single figures. Even streamers with less than 100 viewers may be worth sponsoring. They will be comparatively cheap, and many have active but small communities. If they are increasing in popularity, it may well be worth working with them now, before they become famous, and increase their rates.
- Does the streamer speak the language of your target market? Some of Twitch’s top streamers are based in countries that don’t speak English. They may not be of value to your campaign.
- How active are your potential streamers? You will want to work with streamers who broadcast regularly, so can cultivate a community.
- What’s the sentiment of a streamer’s community? Is the streamer popular with his audience, or does he regularly receive negative comments?
Twitch can be a particularly successful influencer marketing solution for brands who target the right kinds of people. If you sell anything game-related, that appeals to game players, or that simply appeals to young males, then you should consider sponsoring a Twitch streamer.
SocialBook just released the data for brands to find the RIGHT Twitch streamers. Visit socialbook.io for a free demo to find out how!