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Move over Instagram, Facebook, YouTube, and Twitter. Marketers are exploring new social media platforms to reach out to a wider audience. And Twitch influencer marketing is the hottest new trend.
Since it’s a relatively new platform, not many marketers are aware of it and its potential. You can leverage the newness of the platform to your advantage. Be an early bird and capture the audience on the platform before your competitors.
For marketers who are interested in learning more about Twitch influencer marketing, here is a comprehensive guide.
What Is Twitch?
Twitch is a social media platform that allows users to stream live videos for audiences to watch. Anyone with access to a computer, gaming console, or phone can create live streams on Twitch.
In its initial days in 2011, a majority of the content on Twitch revolved around gaming. After Amazon acquired the platform in 2014, it began to expand. Now, influencers use the platform to upload videos of everything that they do. From cooking and painting videos to camping and podcasts, you can find it all on Twitch.
Image via Twitch Tracker
According to Video Game Stats, Twitch has 15 million daily active users. In just April, users watched Twitch content for more than eight hundred million hours. What started as an “underground playground” is quickly becoming a mainstream social media platform now.
Twitch focuses on providing a community experience to their users. One of the biggest differentiating factors between Twitch and YouTube is how they approach sponsored links. While sponsored links are huge on YouTube, Twitch doesn’t allow them.
Moreover, Twitch doesn’t have an algorithm that pushes specific content to users’ feeds. Twitch notifies their users only when a content creator whom they follow uploads a new video. Twitch does broadcast advertisements. Compared to YouTube, they fit in more naturally with the Twitch community.
While streaming videos, Twitch influencers can also engage directly with their audience through live chat. Similarly, fans can interact with each other in a chatroom that’s a part of every channel.
With such engagement, Twitch is already grabbing the attention of brands and influencers. It’s a goldmine for marketers who want to promote their products. That’s why Twitch influencer marketing is growing steadily.
Understanding Twitch Influencer Marketing
Twitch influencer marketing is similar to influencer marketing on other social media platforms in most aspects. The only exception on Twitch is that the content is only promoted in the form of live videos.
You can’t have sponsored posts or pre-recorded videos on Twitch. Because of the nature of the medium, giveaways, product unboxing, and shout-outs are popular for Twitch influencer marketing.
Even the process of getting in touch with influencers is the same. Typically, brands reach out to Twitch influencers via email. After discussing the details of the promotion, the influencers and brands sign a contract. According to the requirements in the contract, influencers promote the brands to their followers.
However, unlike Instagram and Facebook, Twitch users are more open to advertisements. 80% of Twitch users are open to brands sponsoring a specific gamer or team.
It is evident that marketers don’t need to worry about their content appearing too advertorial on Twitch. If your product is valuable to the Twitch community, you are more likely to find a positive response.
“[The Twitch demographic] is a very elusive audience you don’t find on other platforms. We have a different kind of audience compared to a place like YouTube or Instagram.”
-Andrea Garabedian, VP of advertiser marketing, Twitch told Adweek
Data on Twitch’s website shows that 82% of Twitch users are male. Overall, 55% of audience members belong to the age group 18-34. Twitch requires users to be at least 13 years old to create an account.
Compared to other social media networks, the time that users spend on Twitch is significantly higher. To get a fair idea, take a look at the time that users spend on Instagram.
On average, users under the age of 25 spend 32 minutes a day on Instagram. On the other hand, users who are older than 25 spend more than 24 minutes per day on Instagram.
As it is evident, Twitch provides a lot more engagement.
Which Brands Currently Use Twitch?
Twitch’s primary audience is still the gaming community. So, it’s obvious that gaming brands are rushing to showcase their products on Twitch.
You’ll find nearly all major gaming brands on Twitch. However, non-gaming brands are also opening up to the platform and partnering with influencers.
Let’s take a look at some of the brands that are using Twitch influencer marketing.
Gillette teamed up with Guy Beahm, better known as DrDisRespect, on Twitch to promote their range of razors. Often referred to as a WWE character of the gaming space, Beahm sports an iconic oversized mustache.
Image via Dextero
Given that the mustache is an integral part of his brand identity, this Twitch collaboration fit organically. But this sponsorship was a unique one.
Even before he announced the Twitch influencer marketing campaign, Beahm joked about Gillette’s products in his live streams. In one of his videos, he also sang the official Gillette slogan on his show.
Finally, in June 2018, Beahm revealed that Gillette was sponsoring his new green screen room. He named it the “Gillette Skybox.”
In 2018, UberEats collaborated with popular Twitch streamer, Tyler Blevins, (also known as Ninja). Their Twitch influencer marketing campaign was so successful that UberEats received the maximum number of redemptions in just one day.
For this campaign, UberEats presented a challenge to Ninja. For every kill on Fortnite, his fans would get 1% off on their UberEats orders.
They even gave him a time limit. The challenge started when he ordered Quizno’s through their service. Ninja had to make the maximum number of kills until they delivered food at his door. At the end of the time limit, Ninja won a total of 25% off for his fans.
Image via Twitter
Using the code NINJAMOS, UberEats users worldwide could avail a discount of 25% on their orders. Initially, the Twitch influencer marketing campaign was supposed to extend for three days.
However, UberEats received an overwhelming response. As a result of it, they had to end the offer in a single day. Alternatively, UberEats declared that new users could still avail the discount using the code EATSNINJA.
3. Monster Energy
Jaryd Lazar, whose Twitch name is Summit1G, is known for being a high energy player. With over 3 million followers, Twitch often features him in the list of top broadcasters. He streams games like Fortnite, GTA V, DayZ, PlayerUnknown’s Battlegrounds, Counter-Strike: Global Offensive, and others.
Image via Monster Energy
Given his image as a high-energy person, Monster Energy collaborated with him to market their energy drink. Unlike the other Twitch influencer marketing strategies mentioned above, this one was all about subtle branding. Lazar wore Monster Energy merchandise on multiple occasions while live streaming his gaming sessions.
KFC partnered with DrLupo, known as Benjamin Lupo in real life, to give free dinners to his followers. In the Twitch influencer marketing space, KFC’s campaign was very different.
They encouraged DrLupo’s followers to type “dinner dinner” into the chat box when DrLupo defeated other contestants in PUBG. This phrase seamlessly fit into the game’s slogan of “winner winner chicken dinner” while promoting KFC.
Image via Mediakix
DrLupo, a professional eSports player, teamed up with KFC to give away free dinners to his fans. Moreover, KFC created a new bucket emote for the event. After a victory, when DrLupo’s followers typed this into the chat box, they stood a chance to win a gift card.
KFC used Twitch influencer marketing to increase their brand awareness and connect with their target audience. Because they created a new emote, they garnered a lot of interest from the audience. Even after the promotion, other content creators made podcasts and wrote articles based on the emote.
Gaming giant, Ubisoft, uses Twitch influencer marketing often to promote their new games to their target audience. To promote Tom Clancy’s Rainbow Six: Siege, Ubisoft collaborated with LIRIK, a Twitch influencer with more than two million followers.
Image via Mediakix
LIRIK created a sponsored livestream during which he played the game and interacted with his followers. During the streaming session, a follower asked him if he would recommend the game.
In his signature style, LIRIK responded to this question quite candidly. He said, “Do I recommend this game? Are you asking sponsored Lirik or unsponsored Lirik? Yes, sponsored LIRIK says this is a good game and so does non-sponsored LIRIK. It’s a fun game.”
Another example of Twitch influencer marketing is Ubisoft’s collaboration with Twitch influencer, Tucker Boner, whose alias is iiJeriichoii.
To promote their game South Park: The Fractured But Whole, Ubisoft created a live streaming session with Boner. Throughout the video, he built up excitement around the game while remaining transparent about the sponsorship.
6. Electronic Arts
Video gaming company, Electronic Arts, (EA) partnered with Twitch influencer, RoryPlays, to promote The Sims 4: Cats & Dogs. RoryPlays is one of the few female Twitch influencers on the male-dominated social media platform. While she only has around 19,000 followers, her livestreams get a lot of engagement.
Image via EA
In partnership with EA, she created a sponsored live stream in which she discussed the features of the game. This Twitch influencer marketing partnership was perhaps the most conventional one among the others. At the beginning of her stream, she featured the EA logo. Additionally, she provided a link where her audience could buy the game.
Best Strategies to Use Twitch Influencer Marketing
For those who are new to the platform, Twitch influencer marketing can seem confusing. The traditional rules of content creation do not necessarily apply to this platform. That’s because Twitch only allows live streaming. So, how can you connect with your target audience with a variety of content?
Here are some of the best branding techniques that you can use for Twitch influencer marketing:
Twitch streamers have a loyal fan base who place trust in the influencer’s words. If you’ve got a new game or a product launch lined up, collaborate with a Twitch influencer and have them review it.
This is one of the easiest techniques for Twitch influencer marketing and it can boost your sales and brand awareness.
2. Product Placement
If your goal is to create more familiarity with your brand, product placement can be an effective strategy for Twitch influencer marketing.
You can give your branded merchandise to Twitch influencers to showcase it in their live streaming videos. Alternatively, you can ask them to feature your logo in their videos.
Giveaways are the best way to create some buzz around your brand. After all, who doesn’t like a freebie? Giveaways are a great way to create a positive brand perception and to generate more leads.This strategy is the safest way to grab audience attention in the Twitch influencer marketing space.
Twitch influencers often go live for an extended period when they’re attending an event. You could plan a product launch event, a gaming competition, or even a charity event for marketing.
The biggest advantage of this strategy is that you can invite multiple influencers. It’s a great way to create traction with Twitch influencer marketing.
5. Unboxing Videos
Unboxing videos remain a popular form of video content creation. Their popularity comes from the fact that users can get an idea of what it is to use the products in real life. At the same time, it gives marketers a chance to highlight the features of their product.
Twitch influencer marketing is a relatively new concept for marketers. Right now, only a few brands are using Twitch to marketing their products.
It’s a good time to step in early and utilize the latest social media platform to its fullest potential. If executed well, Twitch influencer marketing can boost sales and increase brand awareness.
Shane Barker is a digital marketing consultant who specializes in sales funnels, targeted traffic, and website conversions. He has consulted with Fortune 500 companies, influencers with digital products, and a number of A-List celebrities.