How to Become a Streamer? A Beginner’s Guide
Imagine you’re with your friends and the discussion turns to games. You are trying your best to describe that game you were playing last night, but you can’t quite do it with words alone. You wish you could show them the game, you wish they would have seen you blast that demon boss back to the depths of hell. Then all of you would cheer and rejoice and really FEEL the ingenuity of this game! Guess what, with a variety of streaming platforms, now you can do exactly that, but… how to become a streamer?
- How to become a streamer, exactly?
- Who can become a streamer?
- Which platform should I start streaming on?
- Which type of content should I stream?
- What equipment do I need to start streaming?
- What are the basic steps to growing my channel?
- Is there a general streaming etiquette?
- Is that all about how to become a streamer?
How to Become a Streamer, Exactly?
Answering this question is more difficult than becoming a streamer oneself. So, to better answer it and help you become a streamer, we will break it into 7 more narrow questions.
Who Can Become a Streamer?
The answer to this question is quite simple: pretty much anyone. You can start streaming even if you are under the age of eighteen, in this case though remember to have your parent’s or guardian’s permission before hitting that ‘GO LIVE’ button.
Which Platform Should I Start Streaming On?
This is an important part of how to become a streamer. Twitch, YouTube Gaming, Caffeine.TV, Facebook Gaming – all these streaming platforms have their pros and cons, and choosing one will depend on your ultimate goal.
- Twitch is by far the most recognisable and biggest platform out there, although you won’t be able to stream with 1080p in 60 FPS until reaching Twitch Affiliate status.
- Facebook Gaming is growing rapidly since the Microsoft Mixer platform shut down. Setup is easy, though you may struggle a bit with editing your clips and low-quality streams if you decide to pass on Facebook’s Level Up Program.
- YouTube Gaming provides 1080p streaming for anyone, the drawback is YouTube’s messy content management where live streams get mixed with recorded clips, so getting your channel out there might be a challenge.
- Caffeine.TV is the smallest of these four, which means fewer viewers, on the other hand, it is easier to be discovered there.
All of them have different monetisation programs and offer different ways for streamers to make money out of their content, so make sure to get familiar with them. In the beginning, this might seem not that relevant to you as it doesn’t interfere with how to become a streamer, however, as you grow it will become an important factor. You can read a bit more about earning on Twitch streaming in our guide: Easy to get into, difficult to master – how to monetise Twitch stream?
Which Type of Content Should I Stream?
While live streaming is usually associated with gaming, the truth is that there are no limits on what you can stream (as long as it does not violate the terms and conditions of a particular platform). In fact, one of the biggest categories currently on Twitch is ‘Just Chatting’, where streamers can literally simply talk with their viewers.
So whether you are crazy about playing an impostor in Among Us or would rather show people how you build a kitchen cupboard from scratch, there is always a place for you on a stream.
What Equipment Do I Need to Start Streaming?
No matter if you want to know how to become a game streamer or to stream any other kind of content, your first thought might be that you need a PC. The reality, though, is that it is entirely possible to stream on a Mac, Xbox, Playstation, and even a mobile phone. The choice is yours! If you would like your channel to be appealing to watch though, remember to get yourself at least a decent microphone and a good quality camera.
What Are the Basic Steps to Growing My Channel?
Expanding your viewer base might not be an easy task, there are some basic steps you absolutely should consider:
- Customise your channel. There is nothing more disappointing for the viewers than channel info with nothing in it. Your channel should reflect who you are as a creator and what content you would like to show, so make it recognisable! Provide viewers with information about yourself, use eye-catching panels and overlays, let visitors know when you are streaming, how they can support you, and what social media they may follow you on.
- Schedule your streams. Consistency goes a long way in establishing your stream’s community. Even if you stream once every few days try to find hours that work best for you and your followers and stick to them. This will allow everyone enjoying your stream to know when they may expect you online and motivate them to come back next time you’re live.
- Notify your audience before your stream starts. Seems obvious, yet many times this feature is easily forgotten. Even though many platforms send notifications about your stream automatically, there are additional tools and bots to improve sending these to your viewers. Remember to let people know you’re streaming on social media as well!
- Think about the overall idea for your channel. Take a minute to think about what you like to show to people. Are you really good at something and would like to show your skill? Or you would rather like to entertain everyone and laugh with them about how terrible you are in League of Legends? Maybe you are a really social person and decide on building close relations with your audience? Whichever direction you decide to go, remember that the most important thing is to keep your channel authentic and fun not only for viewers but also, most importantly, to yourself.
Is There a General Streaming Etiquette?
While everyone loves seeing their channel viewer count rising, remember that streaming is not only about the numbers. An important aspect of how to become a successful streamer is that they build strong communities. The mutual respect pays off way more in the long run than cheap shots aimed at momentary boosts for your channel. No one wants to work with an a-hole after all! So here are some things you should avoid:
- Don’t force yourself to network. Build real and natural relationships with other streamers simply because you feel like doing so. Make friends and mutual support will come out naturally.
- Do not steal someone’s work. While there is nothing wrong to search for inspiration on other streamers channels, do not bluntly copy their style and way of being. Your channel should reflect your individuality and personality – things that set you apart from the rest. Individuality and authenticity cannot be faked.
- Respect other streamers’ channels. Do not wander around popular broadcasts spamming chat invitations to your stream.
Is That All About How to Become a Streamer?
Absolutely not! Streaming is a long term adventure. Regardless if you intend to stream for close friends or you want to become a Twitch super-star streamer, try to educate yourself at every turn. You will find tons of good guides on streaming out there! Take a look at our knowledge base articles for reference:
- From rags to riches: the story of Ninja and how you can follow his journey to the top
- Easy to get into, difficult to master – how to monetize Twitch stream?
- How should streamers work with brands?
- How to attract viewers and have your stream stand out?
- Read this before you start working with streamers
- Streaming: 10 tips for getting started
Whatever you do, whatever is the focus or idea you have for your channel, the most important thing to remember is that streaming is an amazing way to express yourself. So enjoy every second of it!