New Features = New Opportunities.
Every time Twitch releases a new feature, no matter how big or small, Twitch creates a new opportunity for streamers to take advantage of. That time you spent complaining about how a new feature “doesn’t benefit the little guy”? Some other streamer that probably has fewer viewers than you was thinking of new ways they could take advantage of the new feature for their stream.
In the past few months, it seems as if Twitch has been releasing new feature after new feature. With every new awesome feature that people enjoy, there are always people that somehow find a way to look at the negatives of these things. DON’T BE THAT PERSON. Whether it’s on Twitter, on your stream, or other avenues of social media, being the person that always finds things to complain about is always the wrong choice. There is a difference from constructive criticism and whining.
A common complaint I see by many streamers is that certain features only benefit the big name streamers and makes it less likely for smaller streamers to get found. I’ve got news for you: most of these new features are going to help bigger streamers more. This doesn’t mean that it can’t help you though. You have to be able to see the big picture.
A great example of this was the recent introduction of Vodcasts, the finished product of Twitch Playlists. Instead of appearing in their own section, they were now appearing in the normal Live Directory and Following feed. The idea of “always on” is quickly becoming a new reality on Twitch. As a smaller streamer, it can be really daunting to know “X Big Name Streamer” will now have even more opportunities to grow their stream. This makes the primary focus on others, rather than themselves. Your mindset shouldn’t be focused on what others are doing with the feature. You can’t control someone else’s stream. Your mindset should be centered on growth: “There is a way I can use this feature to have a positive effect on my stream, and I am going to find it!”
Streaming as a small streamer isn’t easy, but the majority of the “Big Streamers” started out there, too. The reason many of them were able to explode in popularity was because they took a game, or a feature, or just one lucky break and used it to propel their stream to a higher level.
- Improved Stats
- Interactive Interfaces
- Twitch Affiliates
- Twitch Calendar Events
- Sub Gifting
- Twitch Premieres
- Twitch Rooms
If you’re reading this post, and you’re realizing you haven’t been taking full advantage of these features, now is the time to start changing that!
I want to break down a process on how you should digest, think about, and employ a new features release. By following these steps, there’s a good chance you’ll start to see some positive results.
1. Do Your Research
I’m assuming most streamers follow Twitch on Twitter, but if you somehow have not done yet, do that RIGHT NOW. Staying up to date on when new features are released is incredibly important, and Twitter is usually one of the first places that features are announced. Once announced, do some research on what exactly the feature entails. The more information you have on the exact product, the more readily you’ll be able to take advantage of the product.
2. Inform Your Audience
You won’t believe how many streamers know about the new products Twitch is pushing, but never talk to their own streams about them. A big part of the reason smaller streamers never take full advantage of a feature is due to the fact they never tell their chat about the feature. When viewers see you’re excited about a feature, they will want to find out why. The more informed your viewers are, the more inclined they are to check it out.
3. Watch Other Streamers
If you really want to understand what works/doesn’t work for a new feature, check out someone who is successful with it. Twitch is full of streamers that are willing to share their secrets and techniques, and all you have to do in order to learn is tune in. Maybe you’ll find something that you can use on your stream, or even make improvements to the method. Don’t just copy and paste what they do, though. Try to find your own twist.
4. Try New Things/Take Some Risks
Whether you stream on Twitch full-time, or it’s just a side hobby for you, trying new things and taking risks are healthy for the growth of your stream. Not every feature that Twitch releases is going to be right for you and your stream, but a lot of times you’ll never know until you try. I see so many streamers think that it’s a waste of time to give something a shot, then complain when their stream remains so stagnant. What is the harm in giving a feature a shot? Even if it fails on your stream, you’ll learn a ton about why it failed, which will lead to more success down the road. I can’t tell you how many times an idea for a game to play, an event to run, or the use of a feature on Twitch led to later success, even though it initially failed for me.
5. Stick with It
This step goes along with step four as well. I’ve seen a common problem on Twitch where streamers are onto some great ideas that in the long run will greatly benefit their stream, but they give up on it too early. There is always a point where if something isn’t working, you have to move on, but many times streamers never really give something enough time to grow. Sticking it out for just a little longer sometimes is the key to the breakthrough, so don’t give up if it doesn’t meet your expectations right away!
New features can be daunting, but understanding and taking advantage of them as they come out will help your stream in the long run!
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