*This article was originally published on the PowerSpike medium blog.*
For the past few years, influencer marketing has revolved around the same few platforms:
Twitter, Instagram, Facebook, and YouTube.
Recently, however, newer influencer marketing platforms have begun to catch the attention of marketers looking to reach massive audiences. The most recent of which being Twitch.
What is Twitch?
Twitch is a platform that allows anyone with a computer, phone, or video game console to stream live video of themselves for audiences to watch.
In the early days of Twitch, the platform revolved solely around gaming content. After being acquired by Amazon in 2014 for $970 million dollars,however, Twitch began expanding the types of content people could watch and stream on the platform.
Nowadays, you can watch “streamers” (the influencers who stream on Twitch) do anything — from painting, cooking, podcasting, camping, and more — and if you like their content, you can follow them to receive updates any time they go live.
Dave Greco, a streamer on Twitch, live streaming himself creating digital art to 330 viewers.
Twitch started as a fairly “underground” social media platform. But all that has changed.
The site now has a reputation for growing mega-stars in the world of content creation. Influencers like Ninja and Dr. Disrespect stream to tens of thousands of viewers every day and are beginning to receive attention from national publications and media outlets:
An article by CNBC covering Ninja’s rise to fame. And no, those income numbers aren’t fabricated.
By November of 2016, over 292 billion minutes of content had been streamed on Twitch. In just two years, however, that number grew to 560 billion minutes with daily active users hovering around 15 million.
With so much attention on the platform and so many streamers gaining huge followings, brands and advertisers are now paying close attention to Twitch streamers as a way of marketing their products. That leads us to Twitch influencer marketing.
What is Twitch influencer marketing?
Twitch influencer marketing is almost identical to every other type of influencer marketing. The only difference is the promotions your sponsored influencers give are live as opposed to a static video or image.
Dr. Disrespect, a popular Twitch influencer, live streaming from a speed boat to promote ASUS computers and Intel CPU chips.
The process for hiring Twitch streamers is simple. Brands typically contact streamers over email to arrange promotion details and sign contracts, and once everything’s in place, the streamer will begin to promote the brand to their audience as per the contract requirements.
Some platforms like PowerSpike also offer easy ways to contact and hire Twitch streamers at scale. These platforms are a great way to break into Twitch influencer marketing, as their technology handles most of the process for you.
There are many different types of promotions on Twitch — everything from shout-outs, product unboxings, giveaways, and more. We’ll dive deeper into these promotion types in a later article, so be sure to sign up for our newsletter to be notified when that goes live:
Although traditional advertising methods don’t resonate with younger audiences, a surprising number of Twitch viewers are accepting of their favorite streamers accepting sponsorships. According to Twitch, 82% of Twitch users say sponsorships are good for the gaming industry, and 80% are open to brands sponsoring Twitch streamers and esports teams.
What does the audience on Twitch look like?
A majority of audience members on Twitch are male.
According to Twitch, 82% of Twitch’s audience members are male, with 55% of those audience members being 18–34 years old. While there is an age requirement for creating an account on Twitch (13 y/o), there are many younger viewers as well.
What brands are currently using Twitch influencer marketing?
Nearly every gaming brand is using Twitch influencer marketing to promote their products/services. It makes sense given the platform largely revolves around gaming.
As the platform has expanded into other areas, however, more and more non-endemic brands are jumping on board:
Gillette, a razor brand, is sponsoring Dr. Disrespect.
Mobil1, a motor oil company, sponsors Rocket League tournaments, a game where players use cars to play virtual “soccer.”
KFC sponsored Twitch streamer Dr. Lupo to advertise its chicken wings.
Why are so many brands jumping into Twitch influencer marketing?
The main reason brands have started promoting on Twitch is its growth rate.
According to TwitchTracker, there were around 590,000 daily concurrent viewers on Twitch in 2016. That number jumped to 1,070,000 daily concurrent viewers in 2018, and is now sitting at 1,260,914 only 23 days into the new year at the time of this article’s release.
That’s a lot of growth. Many brands recognize this as an opportunity to get in early and start developing relationships with popular streamers before the space becomes cluttered.
But viewer numbers aren’t the only reason to promote on Twitch.
The Effectiveness of Live Promotions
With other influencer marketing platforms, the promotion process is 1-dimensional.
Whether an Instagram influencer posts a sponsored photo or a YouTube creator posts a sponsored video, the promotion is finished once the content is released. The only audience interaction coupled with the promotion is a few liked comments and responses here and there.
On Twitch, both the audience and the streamer are fully involved in the promotion as it’s occurring. If viewers have questions or comments about the product/service a streamer is promoting, the streamer can answer them in real time. This creates an environment that solely revolves around your product while it’s being promoted.
On top of the heightened interaction you receive when promoting on Twitch, the level of connectedness between a Twitch streamer and their viewers is much higher than that of influencers on other platforms. Here’s why:
The average Twitch viewer spends 1.5 hours per day watching their favorite Twitch streamers. On top of this, Twitch is centered around live interaction.
A streamer’s viewers can actively talk with them by posting messages in their chatroom. Most streams are essentially a back-and-forth conversation between a streamer and their viewers. This level of interaction creates a much deeper connection between the streamer and their audience members that isn’t common among other platforms.
When viewers are more connected with the influencers they watch, they’re much more likely to take product recommendations from them.
Twitch is growing at an insane rate with no plans to stop. And with its recent expansions in content types, the room for non-endemic brand promotions on the platform is growing at nearly the same rate.
Want to jump on board?
*A call to action on the original article was placed here.*