During the pandemic, many people have grown to consume a lot of online content and rely on streamers for their daily entertainment. Obviously, many people have now realized that the pandemic made many of those streamers into millionaires may it be Just Streaming streamers, gaming Streamers, or people who take part in various Twitch streaming metas. While streaming in general seems pretty easy, there is much more to streaming on twitch than setting up a camera, a streaming rig, and going live. Many people see Twitch as a very easy path to making a career online and making money, but is it really that easy? Is streaming really as reliable a career choice as many people think? Let’s get into it and see the reality of streaming.
Let’s get into the boring meat and potatoes part of the numbers relating to streaming. As you can imagine streaming being so easy to get started in, means anyone with a computer and OBS can create a twitch account and fire off a stream and go live. This can explain why as of august 2022 twitch has recorded around 8 million or more active streamers. All these streamers split around 140 million unique visitors every month, which is almost three times the numbers it was a mere 7 years ago. Despite this massive market, only 1.2 million streamers are affiliates, meaning less than 15% of the streamers make affiliates and are able to make actual good money with their twitch account as active streamers.
Streaming is a difficult path as most of the money you will make is not from your followers and views, but from eventual deals, you cut with outside advertisers. As of 2022 Twitch has announced they would be slashing all their contracts to take a bigger percentage of the money revenue made by streamers. While many smaller streamers had the opportunity to have a 70-30 split deal, Twitch has announced those days were over and everyone would get a half-and-half contract from now on. This hits especially hard as streamers have no powers of negotiation unless they are big names like XQC or Amouranth who often have unique contracts with grandfather clauses that save them from these terrible deals that clearly advantage Twitch. Many people have criticized Amazon and Twitch’s opportunism of taking advantage of streamers when they’ve been making their biggest numbers
Even then, these contracts are often difficult as while they allow you to make money off the subscription from your viewers, they will often enforce heavy ad density that will often roll when your stream is opened by a viewer which often turns off the viewer. So, the increased ad density is very difficult to deal with for newer streamers, especially if they are trying to grow. Even making your way from 1 viewer to partner with subscription and viewer requirements can be hard to hit so a lot of people have started to buy Twitch followers to boost channel stats and increase their growth. While this is against Twitch’s terms of service, many people have grown desperate to break into the industry in anyway possible.
Streaming requires a huge investment of time, and it explains why the biggest age range of people on twitch is people under 35. Many streamers need to streamer almost 6 hours daily to be able to really see a significant growth and recurring viewership. The hardest part is really breaking the 25 viewer point so you can grow upward and get enough subscribers to get something similar to an hourly wage. That’s why many people who start streaming still work until they reach a point where they can make more money. Taking advertising gigs for video games or products related to streaming is one of the many ways streamers manage to make a living and often make a lot of money, but not everyone has that luck.
As you can see obviously, streaming can be an extremely good career choice but just like acting there is no real reliability or job security. One day you can be on top of the world making thousands of dollars and next up you’re out of fad and bleeding viewers. So, while you may want to try and build up a streaming career you should always make sure you know how to manage your money and do so safely, as they say, don’t put all your eggs in the same basket. So streaming is not reliable and it’s all about timing and luck. Make sure to be well-informed before you jump into a Twitch streaming career!