If you're a Twitch streamer, then chances are that you've been asked this question more than once. It's not uncommon for people who don't understand how to properly use their advertising account (or just want to see if it will work) to ask whether or not they can "run ads" on their channel. But does it really matter? And what kind of payoff would we be talking about if we did decide to try?
To answer these questions, I spoke with two different experts in the field, both of whom agreed that there was no right or wrong way to go about monetizing your stream -- but that there were some important factors to consider before deciding to spend any money at all.
First up is the creator of Ad Manager, an ad platform specifically designed for streamers. Matt has been working with streaming platforms since 2009, so he knows his stuff. He also believes that there are several ways to approach advertising on Twitch. You could choose to run ads manually via the Twitch API, which means you'd set them up yourself. Or you could opt for one of the many auto-ad creators available today, like Stream Ads Creator. Either route requires you to sign up for a new account and create your own ad campaigns. These options require extra effort, though, so unless you already have experience creating streams, manual setup might not be worth it.
Matt prefers using Twitch's built-in ad management tool, called Ad Manager. This service allows users to upload media files, assign keywords to those files, and schedule ads to play automatically based on certain criteria. The end result is that viewers won't even realize you're running ads, because they'll only notice the video playing between segments. If you're looking to make passive income off of your stream, this option may suit you better than anything else available.
While Ad Manager works well enough, it comes with its own drawbacks. First, it doesn't allow users to customize the ad placements themselves. Instead, you must rely on the automated algorithm provided by Twitch itself. In other words, you won't be able to place specific text overlays over images, or change where banners appear in relation to the content being streamed. Also, while you can select specific times during each day when advertisements will appear, you cannot specify exactly when the ads will begin. So if you plan on having live chat going throughout the entire time your stream runs, you'll probably need to wait until later hours to ensure that everyone gets to watch the ads too.
Another potential problem with Ad Manager is that the company charges per click instead of per impression. For example, if someone clicks on an advertisement, they'll actually have to visit the advertiser's website to complete the transaction. While this isn't necessarily bad, it takes away from overall efficiency. Since advertisers often charge higher rates for conversions, and Twitch offers cheaper impressions, it makes sense to cut down on unnecessary clicks and focus on quality rather than quantity.
Lastly, you'll find that advertising with Twitch isn't always easy to pull off. According to Matt, most streamers struggle to keep up with the high demand for ads. As long as a viewer wants to watch something entertaining, there's little chance she'll stop watching after seeing an overlay pop up for 30 seconds. Plus, since most users aren't familiar with the process of signing up for an account and uploading files, they'll likely give up quickly without ever giving it another shot.
With that said, Matt thinks that advertising is still worth considering for anyone who wants to earn money passively through Twitch. After all, it's free to join. Even if you never generate a single cent, you can rest assured knowing that you didn't waste any resources trying to do so.
On the flip side, Twitch affiliate marketing guru Andrew says that advertising on Twitch isn't ideal for him personally. Not only are the costs prohibitive, but he finds it difficult to track results due to lack of transparency. Because the ads are automatically played, there's no way to measure how effective they actually are.
But Andrew also points out that if you're willing to put in the work (and have adequate knowledge), you can still reap the rewards. To achieve success, you'll need to learn the ins and outs of your audience first. Once you discover what kinds of things draw them in, you can tailor your offerings accordingly. Then, you'll need to come up with creative strategies to promote products effectively. With the right mindset and strategy, you can become successful on Twitch!
Andrew explains that most streamers tend to make around $1-$2/hour depending on channel popularity. That number is low compared to traditional forms of online advertising like Google AdSense. However, it pales in comparison to the amount of time spent making videos every week.
As mentioned above, Twitch is completely free to use. There's no additional cost involved whatsoever. So if you're serious about building a following, you shouldn't feel obligated to sell your soul to a third party in order to make ends meet.
In short, yes!
You definitely stand to benefit greatly from putting your efforts towards growing your fanbase. By doing so, you'll increase your followers' engagement rate significantly, helping to boost your channel views. Ultimately, this leads to more opportunities to earn money off of your existing viewership. Which brings us back to our original question...
According to Andrew, it depends entirely on how big your subscriber base is. When there are fewer subscribers, the ad load becomes less demanding. However, the bigger your fan base grows, the more expensive it becomes to maintain.
So, ultimately, the decision boils down to personal preference. Do you prefer spending lots of time behind closed doors tinkering with code, or would you prefer to invest your energy into attracting viewers and earning money?
And speaking of that last point, let's take a look at how you can start earning cash on Twitch.
Yes, but it depends on how you implement them.
For starters, you can always choose to run ads manually via the Twitch API. This entails setting up individual ads, assigning keywords to them, and scheduling them to play automatically. The downside here is that you'll have to deal directly with the platform, which means you'll lose control over your campaign. You'll also have to figure out how to programmatically trigger the playback.
Alternatively, you can leverage tools such as Stream Ads Creator, which lets you automate the whole thing. All you have to do is input information regarding the type of image file you wish to display, along with the desired length of time it needs to show up, and the date and time it should disappear. Afterward, you simply press Play, and voila -- the ads will play seamlessly.
The final choice involves utilizing Twitch's native ad system. Just head over to Twitch Settings & Profile & Advertising, scroll down to Video Ad Options, and enable AutoPlay. From there, you can either pick from preset templates or design your own custom banner.
When it comes to Twitch Affiliate Marketing, however, it pays to dig deeper.
This one is pretty straightforward. Based on past earnings reports, Twitch generates roughly 40% of its annual revenues from advertising alone. So if you manage to bring in $10,000 annually, you can expect to receive roughly half of it in the form of commissions.
Of course, this isn't guaranteed. Every streamer has unique circumstances, so your exact earnings depend heavily upon your personal situation. Still, if you think you'll make thousands of dollars each month, it's a safe bet that the time investment is worth it.
So you've been streaming on Twitch for a while now, but it seems like no one's watching your streams! Or maybe people watch them occasionally, but only if they're really bored. You want more viewers so that you can make money off of your content. How do you increase viewership without spending any money yourself?
You could always try buying some ad space from an external platform (like Google Ads or Facebook), which might help, but there's another option available to you too: Twitch advertising. If you don't already know about this service, then here we'll go over exactly how it works, which platforms you can use, and how much each pays. We'll also talk about whether or not you actually have to buy anything at all to use these services.
If you want to learn more about how to grow your audience on Twitch in general - including tips on building up your personal brand, using social media marketing tools, and growing your YouTube channel - check out our guide to Twitch growth.
Twitch allows anyone to create their own channels, where they can share video content through livestreaming. Anyone who wants to view those channels needs to subscribe (which costs $5 per month) or follow someone else's channel (for free). Once you join a streamer's channel, you will be able to see whatever videos they post live on their screen. The viewer doesn't necessarily need to be logged into their account either – they just need to be signed in to Twitch itself.
However, once you log in, you may notice small advertisements appear next to certain players' names in chat. These aren't sponsored by the player themselves, but rather by the company behind the advertisement. This means that the companies can choose who gets featured and how often, and it gives them full control over how many times viewers see their message. They can even change what text appears in chat depending on what time they decide to put the advert.
It's important to note that if you're trying to monetize your own content, you won't be allowed to purchase ads directly via Twitch. Instead, you'll need to find other ways to generate income, such as selling merchandise or joining affiliate programs.
There are two main ways to obtain Twitch ads: firstly, you can ask your fans to click on links to show your ads during playlists, or alternatively, you can buy the right to display ads yourself. While both methods are effective, it depends on your goals for the ads. Let's take a look at each method below.
Ask fans to click on ads during playlists
This is probably the most common approach used by streamers looking to earn extra cash. When someone clicks on one of your links, instead of taking them straight to your gameplay, they'll end up seeing an ad before you begin playing. There are several different types of playlist that you can add links to, so you have plenty of options. For example, you can set up a link to display whenever "new subscribers" arrive, or whenever new users come online.
The benefit of doing this is simple: since every person who clicks on your ad has to wait five minutes before being taken back to your stream, you'll likely end up attracting a lot more attention than if you had just played normally. However, keep in mind that the amount of time between your stream and the ad will vary based on the speed of internet connections across the world. It's worth noting that sometimes you'll encounter bots clicking on your link to fill up your stats page.
Buy ads yourself
Another way to receive payments is to buy your own ads. This isn't nearly as popular as asking viewers to click on them, however it still offers a good alternative if you'd prefer to avoid paying additional fees. To buy adverts, you simply need to visit the Twitch Ad Manager website and sign in with your Twitch username. From there, you can select how long you would like your ad to stay visible, along with various settings for showing your advert.
Once you complete payment, you'll receive a code to paste onto your stream. Simply enter this code anywhere within your description area, and your ad will appear. Keep in mind that you must include this code wherever you plan on displaying your ad, otherwise you risk losing access to your funds.
To understand how ads work on Twitch, it helps to think about the experience of watching something live versus reading it later. Imagine you were watching a TV show broadcasted by BBC America, and suddenly saw an image pop-up alongside the host's name to promote a product. That wouldn't feel very natural, because it was interrupting the flow of the program. In contrast, reading about a book written by the same author would seem perfectly fine. As soon as you read the headline, you can move on with your life without having to spend any further mental energy thinking about it.
That's essentially how ads operate on Twitch. Your viewers cannot continue watching until after they've seen the ad, so it feels intrusive. This makes sense given that Twitch is primarily designed as a place for gamers to hang out and enjoy entertainment. Since everyone involved knows exactly how much money the developers expect to make from ads, it's safe to assume that the ad format is well thought out.
When Twitch launched its Twitch Prime subscription service last year, it introduced a feature called Instant Replays, which lets you fast forward 30 seconds past the current point of your game to rewind back to the beginning. This removes any potential interruption caused by ads appearing on your screen, allowing you to focus entirely on enjoying the game. Unfortunately, although this feature is fantastic, it comes with a price tag attached: you have to pay an annual fee of around $10 to unlock it.
As mentioned previously, Twitch offers a number of different opportunities to earn money from your streams. The easiest way to do this is to sell products related to your content. Merchandise sales usually take place outside of the Twitch app itself, and range from t-shirts and mugs, to games consoles and laptops.
A few notable examples of successful merchandising projects include Fortnite skins, Minecraft shirts, and Call of Duty onesies. Some streamers have found success selling items directly through Amazon, whereas others rely on third party sites like Etsy to handle transactions.
Alternatively, you could choose to become part of an affiliate program. Affiliate programs allow advertisers to connect their websites with a group of marketers, offering a cut of any purchases made by visitors. Usually, these programs offer a percentage commission on sales generated by individual affiliates, though some top tier networks charge higher rates.
Finally, you could opt to run regular ads on your stream. Although this is less lucrative than the other options above, it does give you complete control over how frequently you wish to appear. Of course, you'll need to cover the cost of running your ads through your bank balance, but it can potentially prove to be worthwhile in the long term.
While you'll never be guaranteed that your ad campaign will result in increased views, there are certainly benefits to putting effort into increasing your presence on Twitch. If you're interested in learning more about how to achieve this goal, check out our article detailing 10 tips for better visibility on Twitch.
No, you don't have to run ads if you're an affiliate marketer. In fact, the majority of Twitch streamers don't participate in affiliate programs, choosing instead to put their efforts towards making money through merchandise sales.
However, if you do want to become an affiliate and sell something unrelated to gaming, you may find that you have to advertise elsewhere. Most major brands tend to ban affiliates from promoting their goods unless they're willing to pay a hefty sum, meaning that you'll need to seek sponsorship deals with smaller businesses. That said, if you manage to secure a deal with a big brand, you'll likely be able to negotiate terms favorable enough to ensure that you receive adequate compensation.
For instance, during his Fortnite World Cup tournament earlier this year, professional gamer Ninja successfully secured an endorsement deal with PepsiCo. He agreed to wear exclusive clothing and drink cans of the soft drink for four months, receiving approximately $400,000 (£300,000) in exchange.
If you're an influencer or streamer looking to generate more income from your content, then you might be interested in running ads on Twitch. But if you don't understand how to actually get started, there's a lot that could go wrong. Let's look at some tips that will help you avoid common mistakes!
You can see all our articles about Twitch here. If you'd like to learn even more, we've also got guides on how to grow your audience, monetize your channel, and earn money off YouTube instead of through Amazon Prime subscriptions.
It’s no secret that advertising plays a big role in driving traffic to any given site or service. You probably already know this because you watch videos online every day – but did you ever stop to think about where those ads come from? Well, if you want to run them yourself, here’s how.
Twitch doesn’t force anyone to run ads. However, if they decide to offer their platform for people who would rather use ad-supported services, it’ll cost them less than using other platforms (such as YouTube) where they must pay a percentage fee to the video sharing website each time someone watches one of their videos.
In addition, Twitch users do not pay anything extra to view advertisements. For instance, if you were to visit a popular gaming livestream without watching any ads, you’d just find yourself browsing a bunch of random games, which isn’t exactly useful.
That being said, Twitch does encourage its community to support itself by viewing ads whenever possible. In fact, the company has made several changes over the years so that viewers aren’t overwhelmed by too many ads throughout the day.
For example, you won’t see nearly as many ads during prime time hours (which runs between 3pm EST until 10pm). And while the number of ads per hour may increase slightly after 9 pm, most of these appear near the end of broadcasts, meaning viewers will still only see four to five minutes of commercials before the show ends.
And since Twitch allows you to set up multiple profiles, you can choose whether or not you want to receive ads based on which profile you log into first. This means you can create different accounts specifically for certain types of streams, such as educational or non-gaming ones.
So yes, Twitch makes you run ads, but it encourages you to do so responsibly. It wants you to keep making content that other fans enjoy, and that generates revenue for both parties involved.
Before you begin working with Twitch advertisers, you'll need to become an official partner. There are three ways to gain access to your own Twitch account: via email, social media links, or direct contact by phone.
Once you’ve signed up for an account, click on “Manage Account" at the top right corner of your screen. Here, you can switch between creating new partners, reviewing existing partners, and deleting your current account.
After that, head back to your homepage, select "Account Settings," and scroll down to the bottom to reach Partner Management. From there, you’ll be able to manage your ads, billing information, and various contact details.
As part of becoming a partner, you’ll need to complete a few steps including approving your credit card, verifying your identity, and agreeing to Twitch’s terms and conditions. After these processes are completed, you'll be ready to work with advertisers.
However, you shouldn’t expect to see earnings from your ad campaigns overnight. Instead, you should plan to wait anywhere from two weeks to six months depending on the type of marketing campaign you opt into.
This process includes setting up your payment method, uploading files, and sending emails containing tracking codes. Once the advertiser receives the code, he/she will send it along to you once they’re satisfied with your product.
The amount of time it takes to approve a purchase depends on the size of the order and the location of the customer. Because of this, you may receive approval sooner than expected if you live close enough to the business.
On the flip side, you may take longer to fulfill orders if the client lives far away from you. So keep this in mind when planning your next trip to buy groceries or send packages.
One thing I love about Twitch is that it offers so many options for creators. On the surface level, it looks like a place where you can upload gameplay footage of whatever game you play, talk to friends, and chat with fellow gamers.
But there’s another reason why millions of people around the world tune in daily, aside from simply enjoying a good ol' game. They come to see famous faces like PewDiePie, Ninja, Tfue, Shroud, and many others doing amazing things.
While the Twitch community certainly loves seeing these personalities perform, they also love seeing new talent rise above the rest. Whether you’re a gamer, cosplayer, actor, musician, or podcaster, it’s completely acceptable to try out your skills on this platform.
There are plenty of opportunities for streamers to make money on Twitch, such as selling merchandises, playing sponsored games, or performing sponsorships. While you may need to spend thousands of dollars upfront to build a brand and secure sponsorship deals, it’s entirely possible to turn a profit within a year or two.
Of course, the main question remains: Is it really worthwhile to compete against established names like Fortnite World Cup host Tyler Blevins, pro League of Legends player Lee Sin, and Fortnite celebrity Ninja? The answer is...it depends!
I say this because you never know when a major influencer decides to jump ship from their current network. That’s why it’s important to diversify your portfolio. Keep in mind that Twitch is constantly evolving and growing, so be sure to stay up-to-date on industry trends.
Despite my excitement for the future of Twitch, I wouldn’t recommend starting a career as a professional streamer unless you’re willing to invest significant amounts of cash into building your brand.
Because of this, it’s often recommended that you focus primarily on earning passive income from your personal channels instead of competing directly with larger stars. When done correctly, however, both methods will undoubtedly pay dividends in the long term.
To sum it up, Twitch is definitely not free. As a matter of fact, the average viewer spends $5.00 USD per month on premium memberships alone. While the price tag seems high, it helps offset costs associated with hosting servers and bandwidth fees.
Because of this, it’s important to ensure that your viewers are happy with the quality of the ad experience. Otherwise, they’ll likely abandon the platform altogether and move onto another platform.
Ultimately, Twitch provides tons of value beyond just ad placement. Not only can you connect with other creatives, but you can also participate in events hosted by companies like Microsoft, Intel, Nintendo, and Ubisoft.
Plus, if you happen to stumble across a sponsor during a broadcast, you can quickly sell merchandise, sign autographs, or request interviews. All of these perks add up to a solid ROI if you put in the effort to market yourself properly.
Become CEO of your own lead generation software company, just follow our battle-tested guidelines and rake in the profits.