What is Twitch? From its use to how it can help your brand

Twitch is the quintessential live streaming platform. It is the most used in the world and has the potential that your venture can make the most of to position itself among your target audience. If you want to know how, keep reading.

140 million users. More than 2 billion hours of viewing every 30 days. Those are the numbers of a platform that is already gaining space beyond the gamer world. A platform that you can also take advantage of to boost your business. But what is Twitch? If you need a compass on this topic, you are in the right article.

The platform made the leap during the pandemic. In February 2020 it had 3.75 million active channels and, in June, up to 7.4 million. That is, it grew by 200% in just four months. When we think about what Twitch is, we usually associate it with gamer streamers, but today it is expanding into other areas such as recipes and live shows.

Twitch allows you to monetize the content you upload and enjoy other accounts for free. Whether you want to understand what Twitch is to watch broadcasts or with an entrepreneurial look, in this guide you will find useful information.

A few clicks away from connecting with the world: what is Twitch and how does it work?

Twitch is a live streaming platform, that is, live broadcasts. It is the largest in the world. You can access it from your cell phone or from your computer. In addition to looking at the content, you can interact.

Its origin was more associated with the broadcast of video game games but, as said before, it is going further and further. Now you can find music content, lifestyle, talks with athletes, etc. This expansion of its “channel guide” is linked to the fact that, in 2014, Amazon bought the platform.

Its exponential growth put it above all streaming platforms. In the third quarter of 2021, for example, Twitch accounted for 70.5% of total viewing hours, well above Facebook Gaming and YouTube Gaming Live.

You already know what Twitch is. Now how does it work? Streamers (those who make the broadcasts) broadcast their video game gameplay or other content in real time. On the other hand, they interact in a chat with their viewers.

Create and be part of communities: what is Twitch for?

Within the definition of what Twitch is, there is also a key to answer. What is it really for? The answer will vary according to what you want to do on the platform: stream? View? Obviously, you can do both.

If you want to join Twitch to create content, the platform will allow you to do so in a very simple way. You need a good computer that doesn’t skimp on hard drive memory, a microphone, and a camera. These elements are what will allow you to be live and start creating your community.

You have analytics for your channel that will give you information about your streams. This data can be from the source of traffic to demographics and number of views. With all the data, you can sharpen your content according to who you want to reach and who is already with you.

You can also see only content. In that case, when answering what Twitch is and what it is for, we would tell you that it offers you a wide variety of channels of different content.

The best? You can access for free. You will find everything: art, music, videogames, sports. If you want, you can subscribe to your favorite channels and make a financial contribution to those who created it.

And no, it’s not like TV. It’s much better. You can join the live broadcast chats. A chat in a live broadcast allows you to chat with who is watching and who is doing it. This reinforces the sense of community.

But as in any community there are certain rules. In this sense, it is important that you know what banning is, whether you are going to watch or create content. Those who violate the rules of coexistence and, for example, incite hatred or bullying, Twitch can ban their account, participate in chats or follow certain channels.

How to use Twitch? What you need to know to take advantage of the platform

When we talked about what Twitch is, we saw that there were at least two ways to use the platform. To view content and/or to create it.

We have to make the same distinction to see how to use the platform, since the pages and options to consider are not the same.

Use Twitch to watch content

With your account ready (if you don’t have one, don’t worry, we’ll see how to create one shortly), you’re all set to navigate the site. We are going to tell you about the key functions and buttons that you do or do have to use.

If you’re opening the Twitch home page for the first time, it’ll ask you to choose your interests and offer you some accounts to follow. Pay attention to the home and the other options that appear:

If you click on “Explore”, you can search for accounts of channels or games that you want to start following. In your search, you can surf between categories or other tags.

Important fact: for each channel, you will know who is in charge of the stream, number of viewers, followers and category, and you can also follow them. You can also have your favorite channels at hand, they will be anchored on the left side of the Twitch page. There will also be those recommended by the platform.

If you’re already participating in a live stream and want to continue browsing Twitch, you can. This can be viewed in PIP mode, which means that the video stays in a floating window while you explore what other features the platform has.

In addition, in the home you will find other options besides “Explore”:

  • The crown icon, you can see what rewards Twitch gives if you upgrade to Amazon Prime.
  • The bell, for its part, will notify you if you have notifications.
  • With “Get bits” you will be able to acquire bits to reward your preferred creators.
  • In the icon of your profile, you access the entire menu about your channel and settings about your account.

Another important point is that, although watching the videos is free, if you subscribed to a channel by paying a monthly fee, you have benefits. Depending on the type of subscription you choose, you will be able to see content without ads, access exclusive broadcasts, talk privately with the creator, and more.

Using Twitch to create content

What is Twitch for those who create content? All. Making live broadcasts is much easier than on any other streaming platform. Later we will see how using software can help you make the task even easier.

Now let’s focus on what Twitch is for streamers and what options you have. First, you need to set up your channel. How? Using the “Control Panel”, which you access by clicking on the icon of your profile that we saw in the previous section.

In the “Control Panel” you will be able to do actions such as completing the information of your transmission and giving it a title. Also, you can configure the live broadcast notification, choose categories, tags and languages ​​and see the statistics.

You can also track the achievements and next goals of your channel by clicking on the extensions section in the left menu.

In the “Events” section, Twitch gives you the option to create events for your channel. You can even share them with whoever you want through social networks. Advertising them on social networks will help you reach more people.

If you go to “Activity”, there are concentrated all the activities that you created or modified in your channel. In “Analysis”, you will be able to access your channel’s statistics including information about your channel’s payment periods and a breakdown of income.

Also, if you still don’t know how to broadcast, in “Tools” you will get the most used applications.

Finally, in “Videos”, you will have all the data on your audiovisual content. If you want to watch your broadcasts, create highlights, add a message to your videos or organize them, it’s the ideal option!

How to create an account on Twitch?

We already saw what Twitch is, what it is for and how to use it. But, to put into practice everything that was explained, you have to create an account. It is important that you know that by signing up you are agreeing to Twitch’s terms and services. But first things first: go to the official Twitch page.

Once you’re there, click on “Sign Up” at the top right of the page. Then, complete the required fields.

The user that asks you is the same that you are asked for in any other social network when you create your account, such as Facebook. That is, it is the name with which users will find and search for you. If you don’t have a definitive idea, don’t worry, you can modify it later.

It also asks you for a password that has to be strong, they insist a lot on this, if it’s weak, they won’t let you register. In addition, you have to complete your date of birth and you have the option to complete your registration with your cell phone number or e-mail.

Depending on the option you choose, a code will be sent to your phone or email to complete the registration. When you have it, enter it where indicated. And ready! You already have everything to start exploring the platform.

Earn income from what you are passionate about: how to make money with Twitch?

It is a fact that, with platforms like YouTube, generating income is possible. In the case of Twitch, there are several ways to do it. But there is a first step, which is to be an affiliate on Twitch.

This is what will allow you to monetize your channel. To be an affiliate, you have to meet a series of criteria such as reaching 50 followers, broadcasting for 8 hours and broadcasting on 7 different days.

One step further is to join the Twitch Partners program. What is being a Twitch partner? It is enjoying benefits such as monetization and tools to grow your channel such as personalization.

In order to apply, you have to meet a series of criteria. The criteria in this case are more difficult to achieve. You will find: broadcast 25 hours in the last 30 days and have an average of 75 viewers.

With that said, let’s look at the monetization options in both cases:

  • Channel subscriptions: it is a monthly payment that the audience makes to streamers. They range from $1.99 per month to $10 or $15 for 6 months. That is, if they subscribe they can do it for a month, for 3 or 6.
  • Bits: What is a Bit on Twitch? They are virtual currencies that your audience can acquire to send you Cheers or animated emoticons during your broadcasts. Each Bit will give you 1 cent.
  • Advertising: You will be given money for advertising on your channel. The amount will depend on the CPM (Cost per thousand ad views) and the campaigns that are active. You can determine the duration and frequency from your “Control Panel”.

Twitch for companies: an opportunity to expand your business online?

You already know what Twitch is, now is it the place for your company? For starters, Twitch is a good channel to strengthen the connection with your customers. For example, some big companies like Netflix and Burger King are present.

You have to know that there are mostly men (there is talk of 70% men and 30% women). Also, most of the audience is millennials and centennials.

If this is your target audience, then go ahead. Some actions that you can do to add Twitch to your marketing strategy are:

  • Interviews: for example, you can invite an influencer who has weight on the platform.
  • Events: above we saw a little of what it was about; This option allows you to create live events and promote them on social networks. This will help you with brand recognition.
  • Webinars: make a broadcast on a particular topic and exchange opinions in the chat.
  • Sponsorships: You can promote your brand during a streamer’s broadcast.

Light, camera, stream: how to stream live on Twitch?

If you’re streaming from a computer, there are programs that can help you manage your stream. The most used are Twitch Studio and OBS Studio.

Twitch Studio

It is a very simple tool. You download it from their website and you can start using it. You have to give permission to access your account and, once linked, configure your camera and microphone. It gives you the chance to customize with scenes or colors and even choose the quality of the transmission. Then click Start Broadcast.

Note Studio

It is a bit more complex. Once you downloaded it, you have to click on “File” in the menu. Then, in “Settings and Issue”. When it lets you choose the “Broadcast Type”, select “Broadcast Service” and “Twitch Service”. As for the “Server”, I chose “Automatic”.

To continue, within Twitch you have to look for the retransmission key of your channel that is in your “Control Panel”. When you are already in your panel, click on “Settings” and then on “Channel”. Then, select “Primary transmission key” and click “Show”. You will have to place that key where the OBS Studio tool asked you for the “Broadcast Key”.

Once this is done, you will be able to configure the video, audio, output and emission. To start streaming, you have to click on Start “Broadcast”.