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September 27, 2018  //       //  Opinion

Game on! Tapping into Twitch for your communications campaigns

By Andrew Rogers

Is Twitch something you should consider as part of your digital marketing strategy? Twitch is finding itself on the radar of more marketers outside of the video games industry. But is the platform right for you?

For those not already familiar, Twitch is the largest online community for video game live streams. If you’re looking to watch the world’s best speedrunners race through Super Mario Sunshine, or pro esports players dominate in Overwatch, Twitch is the place to be. The platform currently sees an average of 15 million daily active users, putting it on par with many national broadcasters . There’s also a very large and active community of content creators. Over 2.2 million Twitch creators broadcast their games live on Twitch monthly.

Twitch has been the go-to video game streaming platform for a few years now. It’s been grabbing even more attention recently thanks to gaming phenomenon Fortnite. Many would argue that without Twitch, Fortnite would not have ballooned into the global juggernaut it is today . It currently stands as the most streamed game on Twitch.

For those not familiar with gamer culture, Twitch can feel like an intimidating and impenetrable platform. This shouldn’t put brands off, even those slightly outside of the video games industry. Any brand looking to appeal to Twitch’s core demographic should consider how they can partner with the platform and its community of creators. Many have already done so, as Twitch’s Partner Programme has now climbed to 27,000 Partners . Before you get started though, make sure you’ve considered the following:

Is the Twitch audience the right demographic for my brand?

There’s a risk of stereotyping gamers too much. Too often, we see gamers as young, male, and perhaps even a little antisocial. This stereotype is completely out of date. Gamers are more diverse than ever before, and Twitch itself has run initiatives to encourage more women and LGBT people to watch and stream.

That said, some of these assumptions do still ring true for those logging onto Twitch. Twitch’s core users are 82% male, and 55% are under 34 . If your brand is targeting older, female consumers, then Twitch may not be for you.

Can I get a streamer that fits with my brand?

There are thousands of streams available at any one time on Twitch. So why do some channels do so much better than others? As with any other influencer marketing project, it all comes down to the personality of the streamer. Twitch users have their favourites for different reasons, whether it’s the way they react to games, the kinds of games they play, or the way that they speak to and engage with their audience.

There is plenty of variety out there. So brands need to make sure they put in the time and research to find a streamer that fits well with their brand. They need to uphold your brand values too, so make sure you’re watching their streams to avoid bringing on board a potentially embarrassing and damaging ambassador.

Have I briefed my streamer properly?

Twitch content is live, and any activity should come with the usual health warnings. You won’t be able to edit or amend what happens or what is said, so your streamer needs to make sure they’re fully on board and understand any brand messages you’re looking to include. Put in the work ahead of time to avoid any nail-biting moments when the live streams go out.

Twitch is only growing in popularity as watching people play games becomes a more accepted way to spend time online. As more money is pumped into global esports, Twitch will also continue to grow. Don’t shy away if you’re not a video gaming brand – Twitch can and should be a consideration for your digital marketing strategy.


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