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I have a confession to make: I'm addicted to Twitch. I seriously have an unhealthy fascination with online people-watching. (No, I am NOT and was NEVER a fan of Chatroulette.)
Since I lack the hand-eye coordination to be a gamer, I didn’t hear about this platform in my young adult years. Fast forward to 2015, and a college friend of mine started raving about Twitch. That was the first time I ever heard about it—a site where nerds throw money at gamers. My friend ecstatically talked about all of his favorite streamers, how engaging they were, and how unapologetically WEIRD their followers were. This was a one-time conversation that stuck with me. I was severely attracted to the concept. I dismissed the wildly popular gaming aspect of Twitch, and focused on the idea of hosting like-minded people and building a community. And rather than posting scripted videos after editing footage with sniper-like accuracy, Twitch streamers talked to their fans. Live. It seemed like a more genuine platform than YouTube.
A few years after my first Twitch conversation, I was confined to my house with my infant son. The days were long, and the nights were lonely, sometimes. I needed to hear an adult voice and talk about adult topics—politics, the weather, movies, SOMETHING. Even though my son is a fantastic listener, he’s unable to offer advice and rebuttals. I had to find a social outlet, but not just ANY social outlet… like a PG mom’s yoga group with free vegan avocado toast and coffee. That's not really my vibe. THEN, I cleaned the cobwebs from my brain, blew away the dust, and found Twitch. I suppose I originally filed the thought of joining Twitch away because I SUCK at gaming (and frankly, most video games can’t hold my attention.) But I gave the platform a second chance, and I'm so glad I did. When I started browsing through the site, I discovered that there were more intriguing niches that were rising in popularity. From ASMR to cooking to chatting to stand-up comedy… the site was surprisingly diverse. The more I watched, the more I loved it. I listened to streamers debate about the LGBTQ community. I engaged with followers in numerous chat rooms and discussed Christmas traditions. I asked interactive streamers for advice, and they certainly delivered. In short, I’M HOOKED. Before, I was looking for a platform to liven up my social life (or lack thereof). After hopping on Twitch, I had a more profound “light-bulb” moment… What if I became a Twitch streamer?
I spent 48 HOURS investigating the Twitch world—taking notes as I browsed. After digging through the streaming categories, I primarily saw four types of streamers:
- The Funny Gamer Guys
- Stunt Performers (Backflips for Subs!)
- Uncomfortable ASMR Chatters
- Titty Streamers
Yeah… I saw a lot of boobs on Twitch. No nudity, just miles and miles of cleavage. Watching show after show, I drowned the chat rooms with questions and gathered advice from the streamers. Thankfully, most of these streamers were very friendly and polite, so they were happy to offer detailed tips to an aspiring Twitch personality. They taught me how to add overlays to live streams, how to engage followers, and how to network on and off the site. The most important tips that I walked away with were these:
1. Be consistent.
Set a stream schedule and stick to it. Reliability is IMPORTANT.
2. Be YOURSELF.
Don’t try to be someone else just because it’s TRENDING. Be genuine and do what you love.
3. Treat your followers like close friends.
Connect with your viewers and nurture that connection. Maintain it. Make your audience feel special, and be open with them. Be friendly, and your viewers will become your subs and your “buddies” in NO TIME.
Solid advice. So, I decided to take these tips and run with them, FULL SPEED AHEAD! (Well, I’ll have to learn how to use OBS first, but…)
The streamers that I considered the most interesting where the streamers who paid attention to their chat and answered questions. There were also a few wonderful storytellers. Those are the hosts I wanted to emulate. I wanted to create a show where I could entertain my viewers and teach them something new—all while indulging in alcohol. Yep! Ace Hessy’s brainchild is very close to term, and it’s called “Chats / Drinks.” My show is going to be filled to the rim with trivia, memes, Q&A’s, fun conversations, and much, much MORE! I’ll be streaming VERY SOON.
If you want to support me, help me build a community from scratch. Go on to Twitch and look for acehessy! I’m SUPER EXCITED to run this “test” and see if Twitch is a good fit for my personality.
Thank you for reading, and I hope to chat with you on Twitch! Cheers!