Here’s a complete guide with all the steps you need to become a streamer and earn money playing video games! You’ll learn how, in just a few simple steps, you can get started as a streamer on Twitch, YT, etc. as well as how much a streamer earns and lots of other valuable information that will help you achieve your dream of becoming a streamer.
- Here's the program
- What is a game streamer?
- What are the 5 steps to becoming a professional streamer?
- Is there any specialized training to become a streamer?
- What are the best streaming platforms?
- How much can a streamer earn?
- What are the advantages and disadvantages of this streamer activity?
- What equipment do I need to stream?
- What are the essential qualities of a Streamer?
- What are the most popular games you should stream?
- 16 ways to monetize your streamer business and earn money
- 12 tips for becoming a successful streamer
- Pros and Cons
- Information recap
What is a game streamer?
A streamer is any person who broadcasts their video game games live on the internet, using platforms such as Twitch, YouTube Gaming or Facebook Gaming. These streamers share their gaming experiences with other viewers (often gamers themselves) who watch them in real time, interact with them via chat, and sometimes, make donations to them.
In other words, being a streamer means becoming a kind of star in the online gaming world. You put yourself forward, demonstrate your gaming skills, share tips, and above all, you create a real community of fans who follow you and watch your streams regularly. And the best part of all is that you can earn money doing it too!
Among the best-known streamers are a host of personalities who have made their mark in the industry. Names like Ninja, PewDiePie, Shroud, Pokimane, and Dr Disrespect are often mentioned when talking about the most influential and popular streamers (personally my favorites are BayAreaBuggs and his buddies, Operator Drewski, and FailRace for his sometimes epic “survive the hunt”, how about you?).
What are the 5 steps to becoming a professional streamer?
Let’s take a look at the steps you need to take to get off to a good start in the world of streaming and turn your passion for video games into a career as a professional streamer.
1Get properly equipped: To start with, make sure you have the right equipment. You’ll need a high-performance PC, a fast and stable Internet connection, a quality microphone to communicate with your viewers, and a webcam to show yourself on screen. You’ll also need to invest in good lighting so that your face is clearly visible during broadcasts.
2Choose your streaming platform: Select the one that best suits your goals and style. Twitch is one of the most popular and is specifically geared towards video games, but YouTube Gaming and Facebook Gaming also offer excellent solutions as we’ll see in more detail below. Do your research, watch other streamers. and familiarize yourself with the different features of each before making your choice.
3Develop your streamer identity: It’s essential to stand out as a streamer. Define your identity by choosing a catchy channel name and creating a striking logo. Also think about your style of play, your personality, and how you want to interact with your viewers. Be authentic and engaging and create a friendly atmosphere during your broadcasts.
4Create a broadcast schedule: Regularity is key to building community loyalty. Establish a consistent broadcast schedule and stick to it as much as possible. Notify your community in advance via social networks of broadcast times, so they can get organized and join the stream. Consistency will help you build a loyal fan base who will come back regularly to watch you play.
5Interact with your audience: Interacting with your audience is essential to building your community. Respond to comments, engage in conversations, ask for their opinions on the games or topics you cover. Create a strong bond with your fans by showing them you appreciate them and actively involving them in your broadcasts.
These steps already give you a solid foundation on which to begin your journey as a professional streamer, but I’ll be touching on some of them again in later chapters and providing you with tips on how to develop your fanbase, monetize your channel, and live your passion to the full. So get ready because the adventure is just beginning!
Is it compulsory to show your face during a stream?
Before going any further, it’s important to note that to be a successful streamer, you don’t necessarily have to show your face. While many streamers opt for a face-to-cam approach, there are plenty of examples of others who have succeeded without ever showing their face (or maybe in the form of a vlog).
The content and entertainment you offer are key to attracting and retaining your audience. Some gamers prefer to focus on the quality of their game, their comments, and their interactions with fans, without necessarily showing their face on screen. This approach can create an atmosphere of mystery around you and allows those watching the stream to concentrate on the game itself. And be aware that some viewers simply don’t like it (especially when the thumbnail of your image takes up too much of the screen).
The most important thing is to find the method that suits you best and that will bring out your different qualities. So don’t be afraid to explore different approaches and find the one that works best for you.
Is there any specialized training to become a streamer?
In the early days, most streamers who broke into the streaming world did so without any training whatsoever simply because they were fans of video games and decided one day to start their own business. But then, there was no other choice because there was no training to help them get started. Today, things are different.
Yes, in some countries there are specialized schools or training centers to help you develop your skills not only in video games but in everything that revolves around them. Note that these training courses are not specifically focused on the streamer’s profession, but rather on e-sports, on the technical skills that will enable you to improve the quality of your content (video editing), and on optimizing your communication (marketing and social media management).
Some platforms, like Twitch, offer educational resources, guides, and forums where you can interact with other streamers and learn from industry best practices. Don’t underestimate the power of online streaming communities either, where you can share experiences, ask questions, and get advice from more experienced streamers.
You can also find a wealth of resources on e-learning sites such as Udemy and Skillshare. These offer a variety of courses and tutorials in different fields, covering topics such as video editing and creating compelling content, optimizing audio and video quality, managing a fan community and much more.
In addition to online training courses, don’t forget to explore free resources such as YouTube tutorial videos, specialized blogs, podcasts, and books on the subject. All of these resources can help you learn the technical basics, provide advice on what hardware and software to use, and help you develop presentation and channel management skills. The key here is to stay curious, keep learning, and adapt to changes in the industry.
What are the best streaming platforms?
Choosing the right streaming platform is a crucial decision as these offer a wide range of features and different audiences. Here, then, is a list of some of the most popular:
- Twitch: The undisputed leader in video game streaming, Twitch attracts a huge community of passionate viewers. With a user-friendly interface and solid monetization tools such as subscriptions and donations, Twitch is a powerful tool for building a community of loyal followers and generating revenue quickly.
- YouTube Gaming: With the power of YouTube behind it, YouTube Gaming offers a solid, streamer-friendly solution. You can reach a wide audience, benefit from visibility on the world’s most popular video platform, and capitalize on advertising revenues and brand collaborations.
- Facebook Gaming: Facebook Gaming offers a unique opportunity to reach a massive audience thanks to its active user base. With features such as live videos and chat rooms, you can easily interact with your viewers and grow your fan community.
- Kick: Kick is a new platform that launched in December 2022. It presents itself as an alternative to Twitch and offers vastly superior benefits to its streamers, particularly in terms of profitability. To attract streamers, Kick offers a highly attractive revenue share, with 95% for the streamer and 5% for the platform. What’s more, content creators can keep 100% of donations and tips given by their subscribers and get their money back the same day.
- Trovo: A fast-growing player, Trovo offers an interesting alternative to the big established platforms. With features such as the “Partnership Program” offering financial benefits to popular streamers, Trovo seeks to attract creators with an engaged community and opportunities for growth.
- Other emerging platforms: There are also several emerging platforms such as DLive, YouNow, Caffeine or even AfreecaTV. These can offer opportunities for streamers looking for new audiences and monetization possibilities.
Note that your choice will depend on your objectives, your target audience, and your content style. Take the time to evaluate each of them and explore their features and communities before making a final decision. Don’t hesitate to try out several to find the one that best suits your needs.
How much can a streamer earn?
Every time, in practically all my articles, I start this chapter with the same phrase: “It’s hard to say”. And to tell the truth, that’s even more the case here. Because a streamer’s income can vary considerably depending on a number of factors, such as his popularity, community size, the revenue streams he exploits, and his ability to monetize his content. There is no fixed figure or magic formula to determine exactly how much a streamer can earn as it depends on too many elements specific to each individual.
Some very popular streamers (I mentioned a few at the start of this article) can earn substantial income from their activity. This can include income from a variety of sources such as subscriptions, donations, advertising, sponsorships, sponsorship deals, brand partnerships, merchandise sales, and even income from exclusive streaming platforms. These successful streamers can earn six figures or more a year!
But calm down because the vast majority of streamers don’t generate such high incomes. Competition is fierce, and it takes time, constant effort, and a certain amount of luck to achieve such high levels of income. The majority of new streamers don’t even generate any income in the first few months, and it’s only after a year or more that the first rewards finally arrive.
It’s essential to bear in mind that streaming isn’t necessarily a path that will guarantee you spectacularly high incomes, but rather a passion that can potentially be made profitable. So focus on the quality of your content, on building your community and on diversifying your sources of income to maximize your chances of success.
What are the advantages and disadvantages of this streamer activity?
As with any activity, there are both advantages and disadvantages. It’s important to be aware of them, and above all to understand them, before you decide to take the plunge. Here are a few points to consider:
- A passion turned into a profession: You can make a living from your passion for games and share your enthusiasm with a community of like-minded people, which can be extremely rewarding on a personal level.
- Flexibility and independence: You can work from home and manage your schedule as you wish, all of which means great flexibility and autonomy in managing your career.
- Community interaction: Streaming allows you to build a community of fans and interact with them in real time. You can connect with people from all over the world, create a special relationship with them, and share unique moments.
- Revenue-generating opportunities: If you manage to develop a solid fan base, it’s possible to generate revenue from a variety of sources as we’ll see later. Some success stories can even lead to lucrative opportunities outside streaming.
- Competition and market saturation: This sector is highly competitive, with thousands of streamers looking to make their mark. It can be difficult to make a place for yourself and get noticed among the existing competition.
- Financial pressure and instability: This business can be demanding in terms of commitment and consistency to maintain and develop your channel. It can be difficult to guarantee financial stability, especially at the start of your streamer career.
- Additional workload: Being a streamer requires more than just playing games. You have to manage your channel, interact with your community, promote your content, maintain your equipment, and keep up with the latest trends. All of this can be time-consuming and requires good organization.
- Negative comments and social pressure: You’ll sometimes have to deal with negative comments and criticism. It’s important to develop the resilience to deal with sometimes derogatory opinions, and to remain confident both in yourself and in what you do (although be sure to take constructive criticism into account as it can really help you to improve).
What equipment do I need to stream?
To start out, you’ll need a powerful PC that can run both the game and the live streaming software. Make sure you have a fast enough processor (Intel i5 or i7 or Ryzen equivalent), an adequate amount of RAM memory (8 or even 16 Gb), a high-performance graphics card (nVidia RTX or AMD equivalent) to run the most demanding games while maintaining optimum image quality and smooth streaming, and an SSD drive (1 TB or more).
A stable, high-speed Internet connection is also essential to broadcast your games live without latency or interruptions. Preferably opt for a wired Ethernet (RJ45) connection as it generally offers far greater stability than Wi-Fi.
To guarantee clear, high-quality sound, invest in a good microphone. Choose a model that minimizes unwanted background noise and captures your voice clearly. Poor sound quality, with excessive interference or a muffled, nasally voice, can be unpleasant for those watching you.
Although optional, the use of a webcam can add a personal dimension to your broadcast by allowing your subscribers to see you live while you play. Make sure you have a quality webcam with good video resolution.
Finally, don’t forget the lighting. A good light source, such as a lamp or spotlight, can improve the quality of your video image by avoiding harsh shadows and making you look your best.
But above all, don’t feel obliged to invest in high-end, expensive equipment from the outset. Bear in mind that you can always upgrade your set-up over time according to your specific needs and objectives but also and above all according to the success of your channel.
What are the essential qualities of a Streamer?
To succeed in this field, it’s essential to possess certain specific qualities that will enable you to stand out from the crowd and attract a loyal audience. Here are some of the qualities you need to become a successful streamer:
- Be a talented gamer: To captivate attention, it’s best to be a skilled gamer as viewers like to watch streamers who excel in their field, whether in competitive, role-playing, or strategy games. Hone your gaming skills, be responsive, and demonstrate your mastery of the game to inspire admiration and inspiration in your viewers. And if you’re not up to speed on a particular game, train intensively first.
- Have charisma and energy: Your personality is the key to attracting and holding people’s attention. Be charismatic, passionate, and energetic throughout your streams. Interact with your viewers, respond to their comments, and create a friendly, fun environment. Your dynamic presence will help build audience loyalty and encourage them to return for future streams.
- Be creative: To stand out among the multitude of streamers, develop your own creative style. Offer original ideas, relevant commentary, and entertaining moments. Find unique ways to showcase your personality and content to deliver a memorable experience to your viewers.
- Master technological tools: Streaming requires a solid understanding of the technological tools involved in live broadcasting. Familiarize yourself with the software you’ll need to use, audio and video equipment, game capture setups, as well as popular streaming platforms. By mastering these tools, you’ll be able to deliver quality broadcasts and a smooth, optimal experience.
- Know how to interact with your community: A streamer’s success depends largely on his or her ability to interact with the community. Be attentive to your viewers’ comments and questions, engage in discussions, create polls or interactive games. Build bonds with those who interact with you, establish a relationship of trust and create an enthusiastic community around you and your content.
What are the most popular games you should stream?
The answer to this question is simple: There are no absolute “best” games. Streamers’ and viewers’ preferences vary considerably according to their personal interests, tastes and playing styles. Some streamers focus on triple-A games, which are large-scale titles developed by famous studios (EA, Ubisoft, Epic Games…) while others prefer to explore independent (indie) games, which are often more original and creative.
The main aim is to find games that you’re passionate about and that allow you to provide engaging content for your followers. If you’re a big fan of triple-A games with stunning graphics and a compelling story, you might opt for popular titles such as GTA (Online or RP), Red Dead Redemption II, Minecraft, Call of Duty, Fortnite, League of Legends, Assassin’s Creed, Ghost Recon, The Witcher, Fifa, The Elder Scrolls, Halo, Far Cry, Overwatch, Zelda, etc.
On the other hand, if you’re drawn to more creative and innovative games, indie games can offer a variety of interesting options. Titles such as Rocket League, Die Young, Among Us, Limbo, Ori, and Stardew Valley are popular for their original gameplay and sometimes their unique stories.
Alternatively, you can also bring out old titles that everyone has forgotten but which are still fun to play and watch, such as Duke Nukem 3D, Command & Conquer, Doom, Quake, Age of Empire, Half-Life, Diablo and so on. Sometimes even games that are only a few years old, such as StarCraft, Portal, Crysis, Counter-Strike, Sleeping Dogs, Bioshock, Dishonored, Metro, etc., can arouse interest.
The important thing is to strike a balance between the games you like and those that interest your fans. You can also diversify your streams by offering different types of games to reach a wider audience. There’s no magic formula, so explore different genres, play games you’re passionate about, and interact with your fans to find out which games generate the most engagement and positive reactions.
16 ways to monetize your streamer business and earn money
Monetizing your streamer activity can enable you to earn money from a variety of sources. Here are a few methods commonly used by streamers to generate income, as well as a few more original ones:
- Donations and tips: Your viewers can support you financially by making donations and giving tips during or even outside your streams. These donations enable them to support you financially on a one-off or recurring basis, via the platforms themselves or via sites such as Ko-fi, Buy Me A Coffee, Patreon or even Kickstarter.
- Subscriptions: Many platforms, such as Twitch, offer viewers the opportunity to subscribe to your channel for a certain monthly fee. In exchange, subscribers often enjoy exclusive benefits such as personalized emoticons, special badges, or access to subscriber-only discussions.
- Sponsors and partnerships: As your channel grows in popularity, you can attract the attention of brands and companies keen to promote their products or services to your audience. You can establish partnerships with sponsors to display ads, promote product,s or participate in sponsored events while offering benefits to your visitors (promotions, discount codes…). But be sure to choose partnerships that match your community and values.
- Advertising: Ads can be an additional source of revenue for streamers. Some platforms integrate ads into video streams, allowing you to earn money based on the number of views or interactions with these ads. However, it’s important to strike a balance so as not to frustrate your viewers with too many ads.
- Merchandise sales: If you have a strong fan base, you can create and sell your own merchandise, such as T-shirts, caps, mugs, or stickers featuring your brand or logo, via “print on demand” sites such as Printful, Pritify, or Gelato. You could also consider opening an online boutique to sell exclusive products to your fans.
- Affiliate programs: Some platforms also offer affiliate programs that enable you to earn a commission on sales generated by affiliate links you share with your fans. For example, if you recommend a game or product via an affiliate link and someone buys it, you can earn a commission on that sale.
- Sell additional services: Offer additional services such as logo design, banner animation, or video editing to earn money from your technical skills. You can do this by creating a profile on microservices sites such as Fiverr or UpWork, for example.
- Live Shopping: Live shopping combines e-commerce, social media. and live video. It involves talking about a product or service during the stream and providing a direct link to where it can be purchased. This technique enables you to promote and sell products or services to viewers, who can then purchase them directly during the broadcast.
- Pay-per-view content: Offer live but paid content, where viewers pay to access your exclusive content and interact with you in real time. Read this article to find out more.
- Crowdfunding campaign: Organize special fundraising events to support you and your channel or even charitable causes, encouraging your viewers to donate.
- Coaching and tutorials: Offer paid coaching, tutorials, or mentoring sessions to help other players improve their gaming skills or develop their own channel.
- Tournament entries: Participate in national or international tournaments to win prizes and cash, promote your brand, and gain visibility.
- Appearances and collaborations: Seize opportunities to appear at events or collaborate with other streamers to benefit from revenue sharing or appearance fees.
- Writing and publishing: Write articles, guides, or even books about streaming or the world of video games, and earn money from sales of your work. You can also create a blog and publish various articles on the world of video games and monetize them.
- Game strategy consulting: Offer game strategy consulting services to help players improve their skills, develop game tactics, and optimize their gaming experience.
- Exclusive streaming contracts: Secure exclusive contracts with streaming platforms, guaranteeing regular income and special benefits in exchange for distributing your content exclusively with them.
Don’t forget that success and revenues vary according to your notoriety, the quality of the relationship you have with your fans, and your dedication. Explore these different opportunities and find the ones that best suit your style and purpose. It’s also essential to maintain a relationship of trust with your audience by ensuring that the revenue sources you choose are in line with your content and your community’s expectations.
12 tips for becoming a successful streamer
Let’s take a look at the tips that will help you create attractive, engaging content, build a loyal audience, and ultimately generate enough money to make a living from your passion.
- Identify your niche: Don’t target too broadly, but rather find your own style and target a specific niche. Emphasize your strengths, whether by playing a particular genre of games (action/adventure, RPG, FPS/TPS, strategy, sports…), offering live commentary with a unique style or highlighting specific skills. A well-defined niche can help you attract a highly engaged audience.
- Create strong branding: Develop a consistent visual identity and branding that represent you well. Choose an evocative and catchy channel name, create attractive graphic elements for your logo, banners and overlays (don’t hesitate to spend a few dozen dollars by entrusting this task to a pro on UpWork or Fiverr). Strong branding will not only enable your fans to identify you quickly but also reinforce your credibility as a professional streamer.
- Interact actively: Engage fully with your audience during broadcasts. Respond to comments, ask questions, create polls, and involve your viewers in the content of your streams. I’ve said it before, but active interaction greatly promotes engagement and builds loyalty in your community. Above all, always respond with sincerity and kindness, and never lose your cool, even in the face of insults (because yes, there are likely to be some too).
- Offer added value: Offer quality content that goes beyond just playing. Add your own personality, humor, knowledge, and tips to make your broadcasts unique and entertaining. Providing an enriching experience for your community is essential to building loyalty.
- Use social networks: They’re a powerful tool for promoting your channel and interacting with your community outside of broadcasts. Use communication tools like Twitter, Instagram, and Discord to share highlights, announce upcoming streams, and connect with your fans.
- Collaborate with other streamers: Collaborations with other streamers can be mutually beneficial. Organize duo or group play sessions, take part in special events, or create collaborative videos. This will enable you to share your audience and reach new audiences.
- Analyze and adjust: Regularly monitor the statistics and analysis of your broadcasts to understand what’s working and what’s not. Identify the highlights, popular games, and topics that generate the most engagement, then adjust your content accordingly. The ability to adapt and evolve is essential to staying relevant in this field.
- Show yourself but not too much: If you decide to show yourself during each stream, make sure your image remains relatively unobtrusive (some are displayed on almost a third of the screen lol). Display yourself in a corner at the bottom of the screen and use a green background so that only you can be seen (most people don’t care about your Pokémon collection on the shelf behind you 😋).
- Don’t be a sore loser: Don’t get upset when you lose. If you swing your keyboard or joystick across your screen every time you get virtually shot down, you’ll quickly look like a big loser and lose fans (set a good example!).
- Be consistent in your broadcasts: I’ve said this before too, but it’s an essential element for success in this business. Publish content frequently and at regular intervals.
- Improve your skill: If you’re getting the crap kicked out of you every 5 minutes, your audience will quickly get bored. Before you start, practice hard on every game you stream.
- Be patient and persistent: Success doesn’t happen overnight. It takes time, perseverance, and hard work. Don’t be discouraged by challenges or periods of slow growth. Stay true to your passion and continue to provide quality content.
Becoming a video game streamer and making money can be an exciting adventure, and if you’re good at it as a gamer, have charisma, a pleasant voice, and a touch of humor, it can propel you quickly to success. The combination of these qualities can quickly attract the attention of viewers and help you develop a committed community.
However, don’t be discouraged if you don’t have all these characteristics right from the start. Your chances of success are not limited to these intrinsic qualities but also depend on your dedication, creativity, and ability to adapt. If you’re prepared to invest time and energy, and persevere despite the obstacles, you can still succeed in this competitive sector.
Remember that success doesn’t come overnight, and it can take time to build a loyal fan base and generate revenue. Stay focused on the quality of your content, interact with your audience, be open to partnership and collaboration opportunities, and continually seek to improve your performance.
Whether you’ve already started up or are thinking of launching, I’m curious to hear about your experience and aspirations. What are your expectations and concerns? What games do you plan to stream? Leave a comment! I look forward to hearing from you! 😊
Environmental and climate change issues are more than ever at the heart of the concerns of this 21st century, which is why I am proposing a few ideas that will enable you to limit the negative impact that the implementation of this idea could have.
These solutions that I suggest are sometimes largely insufficient to compensate for these negative impacts, such as carbon offsetting. Unfortunately, there is not always an ideal and 100% efficient solution, far from it. And if you have others, please do not hesitate to share them in the comments below.
Video game streaming can have a negative impact on the environment, mainly due to high energy consumption and associated carbon emissions. The streaming servers and data centers needed to store and distribute video streams consume a considerable amount of electricity, often produced from fossil fuels and therefore non-renewable.
To limit these negative effects, you can take steps to reduce your energy consumption. Opt for energy-efficient IT equipment and configure it for maximum efficiency. Use lower video resolution settings whenever possible as broadcasting high-resolution content consumes more bandwidth and energy. Also, remember to switch off your equipment when not in use to reduce standby power consumption.
Another way to reduce this environmental impact is to raise awareness of ecological issues among your viewers. Share information about the environmental challenges of streaming and encourage your viewers to adopt sustainable practices. You can encourage them to save energy by switching off their devices when not in use, to recycle their electronic equipment properly, and to support carbon-offset initiatives.
By adopting sustainable practices you are setting an example for your audience and encouraging a responsible approach to online entertainment.
- A passion transformed into a profession if successful
- You manage your own time
- A community that follows you
- A market that is already highly competitive and relatively saturated for certain niches
- Highly unpredictable revenues that may take a time to come in
- Public exposure and all the drawbacks that go with it
- Location: At home
- Investment: A gamer PC and accessories, so none if you’ve already got all that
- Earnings perspective: Impossible to say as it varies too much from case to case
- Required: Talented and creative gamer able to entertain his audience, persevering and hard-working, with a sense of humor and a certain charisma, able to manage his business and networks.
- Risk level: Low
- Implementation time: You can start immediately, but don’t expect to generate income for a few months (with rare exceptions).
- Material needed: A high-performance PC (CPU i5 or i7 or Ryzen equivalent, RAM 8 or even 16 Gb, RTX graphics card or AMD equivalent and an SSD drive of 1TB or more), good-quality headphones and microphone, a lighting set and an HD webcam (if you show yourself).