Whether you’re on Twitch, Mixer, or another platform – earning a partnership is a necessary step in the evolution of your streaming career if you’re wanting to take it serious. Upon being partnered, you get access to transcoding options for your viewers, the ability to run ads on your channel or gain subscribers, custom emoticons, early access to beta features, priority help, promotion opportunities, and much more. It’s very easy to see why you’d want access to these benefits.
With that said, many view this last hurdle as a final boss of sorts though because it’s not exactly the easiest to become partnered. These platforms receive TONS of applications each week so it’s imperative that your application stand out from all the rest. To put this in perspective…
There are 2.2 million unique streamers on Twitch as of 2016. Of those, 17,000 are partnered. That’s a whopping less-than 1%. Needless to say, it really isn’t easy to get partnered and you should NOT get discouraged if you apply and get denied. You can always re-apply. Did you know that Anthony Kongphan applied over 50 times before getting partnered? Determination goes a long way here but there are ways of setting yourself up for success…
POTENTIAL TO GROW
Gauging your numbers is the first step of the application process and to some, one of the most intimidating and frustrating aspects of applying as the requirements can be grey at times. Twitch and Mixer both have very different numerical requirements but sometimes tend to bend the rules in favor of talent they see as “potential to grow” (we’ll touch on that soon). While Twitch may say that you need 500+ concurrent viewers to apply, the reality is that there are plenty of applicants who only get half of that or even less and are partnered to this day.
It’s worth noting that since Mixer is a newer platform, the requirements are much lower but there’s obviously a smaller audience. I’d also add that Mixer’s discovery for newer streamers is superior than a site like Twitch due to filter’s like “Up and Coming”. There are certainly cases for both platforms to be made but Mixer will probably offer you partnership if you have lower numbers.
Don't let the 500+ intimidate you.
The idea of “potential to grow” is the big takeaway here though. You still DO need a good base of followers and concurrent viewers but you may not need the suggested requirements. What the platforms are most interested in seeing is that you’re making progress, gathering interest from viewers, and showing steady growth so that you can someday achieve the actual suggested requirements someday.
CONSISTENCY AND ENGAGEMENT
How often you’re streaming is basically the same as how serious you’re taking streaming as a hobby or career. Both Twitch and Mixer suggest you should be streaming each week at least 3 times or more. If you’re not doing that already then that’s something you can easily work towards to check that off your application checklist.
Community interaction and engagement are also huge when it comes to your application. How are you treating your viewers? How active are your viewers? Are you doing anything special for them? Do you have moderators? How active are those moderators? These questions and more are all things you absolutely need to have the answer to and if not then you need to work on them prior to application.
The term, “content is king” has been around for ages and at this point just comes off as cliché when said BUT…it still holds true. If you’re playing a game then the biggest question you need to ask yourself is, “is this the best choice for my channel?”. (Refer to #2 in our New Streamer Tips for more on Specialist vs. Variety streaming).
Futureman in his element.
After you’ve decided on the actual content of your channel, how can you build around it? Can you come up with some elaborate catch like Dr. Disrespect and his outrageous costume and antics? Or what about Futureman and his creative use of green screens and 80’s nostalgia? These streamers and many others have come up with key differentiators that make them stand out from their counterparts.
Another way to separate yourself from the crowd is to put some serious thought into your branding and production elements. How much polish are you putting into your stream? Do you have an intro and outro video? We’re not saying you need these types of things but don’t think it doesn’t go unnoticed.
BE YOURSELF (AND POLITE)
Lastly, both the Twitch and Mixer partnership applications have added areas where the streamer can tell the partnership manager a little about themselves. This is essentially the last checkbox that the partnership manager will look over before deciding whether to give you partnership or not. They’ve already looked at your numbers, looked at your content, branding, etc. and have started to make their mind up about you. This letter is the last chance you’ll have to win them over.
So tell them about your big plans. Tell them why they should bet on you. Tell them something they won’t forget. Tell them…politely too. You’d be surprised at how far kindness goes. There’s a good chance that you may cross paths with this person again if you get rejected so be sure to make a good first impression.
At the end of the day, you should look at getting partnered by a platform as a business relationship above all else. By becoming partnered, the platform is taking a risk on you as they’re willing to dump resources (direct help from partner managers, transcoding technology, etc.) into you so they absolutely need to see the benefit that you’re providing them.
Remember that less than 1% of Twitch streamers are actually making a consistent living and career off of streaming. It’s great to strive for these goals but do not ever get discouraged if you get denied. Streaming should be looked at like a fun hobby and if you should be fortunate enough to grow it into a career then congratulations, you’re doing what many dream of.