26-10-2021 | Digital Marketing

Marketing on Twitch For N00bz

Heard of Twitch? If you’re not a gamer, you may have heard on the grapevine about an exciting streaming service called Twitch. For those that like to stay up all night grinding your favourite games you may be surprised that some haven’t even heard of it!

 

Well, Twitch is growing. Rapidly.

 

In 2020, Twitch saw a 70% increase in consumed content compared to the previous year. That’s 18.6 billion hours of consumed content. In 2015, this was less than 5 billion.

 

This has led to more intrigue around the platform than ever, especially from brands that are looking to expand their digital marketing activity. With the platform seeing an average of 15 million daily active users, brands are slowly realising that they may be missing out.

 

And it’s not all about gaming. There are many more niches on Twitch that you can get stuck into with your marketing, such as cosplaying, chess, and even model-painting.

 

So how can you utilise the platform?

The evolution of Twitch

First, let’s take a look at how content on Twitch has evolved over the years. Twitch.tv was created in 2011 by Justin Kan as a spin-off from Justin.tv, due to the vast-popularity of the gaming category of the latter. As the years went by gaming on Twitch became more and more popular, becoming the biggest gaming-streaming service out there (and inspiring others like YouTube to follow suit).

 

In recent years, alongside the colossus that is gaming on Twitch, there has been a resurgence of live-streaming non-gaming content. This has opened the platform to wider audiences, with demographics on the site becoming more balanced. In 2017, 80% of daily users were male. In 2019, this number had dropped to 65%, and this trend has continued through to today.

 

Although the scales are levelling out, one thing remains: the platform’s users are young. 78.4% over users are 29 and younger. And with niches cropping up in all corners of the site, opportunities for small like-minded communities have exploded.

Why do you need to know to start marketing on Twitch?

There are two main types of marketing on Twitch.

 

  1. Influencer marketing
  2. Traditional marketing

 

Reaching out to influencers on the site can be extremely lucrative, as brand-deals and sponsorships have become more popular and, crucially, accepted by audiences.

 

Being able to market your products in a personable way is by far the most important aspect of influencer marketing, as your influencer-of-choice will be adding social proof by the second. With the oversaturation of digital marketing techniques, users of social media and entertainment services (such as YouTube and Twitch) are more dismissive as ever, and it seems that the humanisation of brands is how they stand-out.

 

But don’t fear! If this isn’t your vibe, traditional Paid Media marketing techniques are also viable options on the platform. Twitch offer a huge variety of placements for paid ads, including:

 

  • Homepage carousel
  • Homepage headliner
  • Medium rectangle
  • Super leaderboard
  • Twitch premium video

How can it be done?

Let’s look at some examples, both good and bad.

 

Infamously, KFC added their ‘bucket of chicken’ emote for Twitch chat, but this got hijacked by the not-so-nice side of the platform. Originally, this emote was introduced as part of a paid partnership with a PUBG tournament, and was quite a clever marketing idea with the game’s use of the saying ‘Winner, Winner, Chicken Dinner’. Viewers were encouraged to use the emote to win a real chicken dinner. Perfect, right?

 

Well, it didn’t last long. Twitch chat’s sense of humour can be ‘a bit much’ at the best of times. And the emote was shortly used for racist jokes. 2 days later, Twitch removed the emote.

 

This is an extreme example, but an example nonetheless, of the kind of space Twitch can be. With memes and trends running the show, marketers need to be really careful with how they can fit into the space in a fun way that doesn’t cross any lines. As long as silly fun can be used for your brand, Twitch is the space for you, but make sure it doesn’t get out of hand.

Let’s take a look at an example that’s a little less scary. Gillette teamed up with DrDisrespect, the moustachioed character created and played by Guy Beahm. Beahm would promote their razors through his personable and entertaining streams, adding social proof through comedy.

 

It worked, and that was due to one thing.

 

The deal fit his branding. His moustache is an iconic part of his character; DrDisrespect would not only joke about Gillettes’ products before even agreeing to the brand deal, he even went as far as singing their slogan on stream.

Should you find a niche? And how do you do it?

Finding a niche can be a double-edged sword. Narrowing down your audience to a very specific group of people will have two effects.

 

  1. You will be marketing to fewer people (duh) and therefore this can get fatigued quickly
  2. Your audience will be extremely engaged (even for Twitch audiences, who are more engaged than most)

 

This means that your audience will be more likely to interact with your brand, but this is not a sustainable tactic. But it is definitely a great tactic to get started on Twitch with.

 

So how do you do it?

 

First, and it may seem simple, but take a look at what is on there. For example, a quick search for model-painting and you can literally watch paint dry (it’s exciting for some of us, promise).

 

But don’t forget that you need to get in-front of viewers, and going too niche won’t make you any money. Make sure you find the balance between engaged audiences and big enough pots.

 

Next, as always, think about your audience. What do they like? There’s no point marketing on cosplay streams if you’re pushing a set of bread knives (unless they are cosplaying Edward Scissor-hands). Make sure you have understood who your audience is, what they are interested in, and most importantly, how they engage with marketing on Twitch.

 

Are you targeting talk-show and podcast listeners? Do they engage more with giveaways and brand shoutouts, video pre-roll ads, or display ads? Once you’ve found your niche and figured out how to market to them, it’s all systems go! 

Is it for you?

The main thing you need to remember is that Twitch’s audience is young. And if you’re interested in influencer marketing, Twitch may be the way forward.

 

If you can find a fun angle for your brand that fits into a niche, resonates with an influencer’s audience, or is creatively unique, then you’re in!

If you’re interested in marketing on Twitch head over to their advertising page to find out how your brand can get involved in the platform.

Headshot of Sam Bacon

Sam Bacon

Performance Executive