If you are new to streaming on Twitch, or if you have been streaming for a bit and are struggling to get viewers in your chat, then read through this article because I am going to lay out 13 things you can do to get your first few viewers on Twitch.
How to Get Your First Few Viewers on Twitch
In order to get your first few viewers on Twitch, you will have to implement some, if not all of the tips below:
- Visit the Streams of Other Small Streamers
- Network with Streamers on Social Media
- Use Bots
- Create a Youtube Channel
- Be Active on Discord
- Create a Schedule
- Be Consistent
- Invite People You Game With to Watch Your Stream
- Invite Friends and Family to Watch Your Stream
- Be Helpful on Reddit
- Use a Camera
- Have Overlays
- Be Engaged
I think these are the best things you can do to get your first few viewers on Twitch. I have used all of these and using them helped me to reach Twitch Affiliate.
Getting your first few viewers on Twitch can be tricky, but if you use the tips above and are consistent, then you will have people stopping by before you know it.
Now I don’t just want to give you the list and then leave you hanging so keep reading I will go over each of these tips in greater detail.
1. Visit the Streams of Other Small Streamers
You have probably heard a lot about “networking” on Twitch. But with who and how is the question. Well let me tell you.
If you want to network with other streamers on Twitch, you should try reaching out to and working with streamers who have similar size streams as you do.
Unless you have something to offer, they won’t. That’s why you network with smaller streamers because you both have something to offer each other, and that is mutual support.
If you want even more information about networking on Twitch, check out my article on networking here.
2. Network With Streamers on Social Media
On social media you will find tens of thousands of small streamers trying to grow and promote their brand/channel.
In fact, there are entire Twitter pages dedicated to small streamers. Using these Twitter pages was how I gained over 50 Twitch followers in a week. Check out my video below.
When it comes to social media, I recommend sticking to Twitter and Instagram. That is where all of the streamers are at.
Twitter in particular is where you can find a lot of small streamers, and just like in step one, reach out to them and show your support and see if they will do the same for you.
Many times when you support a small streamer by visiting their streams, they will support your channel as well by stopping by. And this can help you start getting some viewers in your stream.
3. Use Bots
Bots are often free and super easy to setup and so there is no reason not to use one in your streams. I use the Cloudbot on Streamlabs and it is super easy to setup and is free to use. And if you get Streamlabs Prime you can even give your bot a unique name (use my link for a discount if you decide to get Prime).
If you are curious as to what some of the best Twitch bots are then check out my article here.
Bots are very helpful and count towards your viewer total so why not use a few bots to get your first few viewers on your channel.
But I just want to clarify, I am not referring to “view botting”. This is a whole other practice which is illegal and could get you banned on Twitch. I am referring to the use of legitimate bots like Cloudbot and Nightbot.
4. Create a Youtube Channel
You have probably heard this a thousand times, if you want to grow on Twitch, you will have to do it on other platforms besides Twitch. The discoverability on Twitch is just not good.
And for many streamers, the other platform they use to grow on is Youtube. Youtube’s discoverability is so much better than Twitch’s it is not even close.
Youtube rewards content creators for things like watch time and engagement and so if you make good content that people engage with, you will be rewarded.
Twitch on the other hand does not reward for good content, but instead pushes streams with the most viewers. That is how their algorithm works. The more views, the higher on the recommended channels list you will appear.
This is why as a small streamer it can be so hard to compete. The algorithm is literally stacked against you. But on platforms like Youtube, you have a shot.
If you can create quality, engaging content that people engage with then Youtube will push your content. More than Twitch will at least.
So if you can create a Youtube channel with good content, and get people who are supportive and want to see you succeed, then you can try to funnel them over to your live stream (Twitch channel) and now you have a support system on Twitch as well.
Now this is easier said than done, but almost everyone will agree that it is easier to grow on Youtube than it is on Twitch, even more so with things like Youtube shorts. Check out my nifty short below hehe.
Some of my Youtube videos have several thousand views. My Twitch channel is nowhere near that and so I would have to agree. It is easier to find people on Youtube than Twitch.
5. Be Active on Discord
When you are looking for your first few viewers, it doesn’t make sense to create a Discord yourself as a way to draw people in.
However, there are tons of awesome Discords out there that will literally allow you to promote your stream within them. How cool is that?
Now I wouldn’t promote my stream in just any Discord or you could get banned, but if the owner of the Discord allows it then why not?
Discord is used by so many streamers and so if you looked around I am sure you could find Discords that allow you to promote. One streamer that comes to mind is Eagle Garret. He has a whole section for people to promote their streams. Kind of cool.
6. Create a Schedule
As a small streamer you MUST have a schedule. As a big streamer you can probably get away with not having one, many do, but as a small streamer you have to have one.
As a big streamer with millions of followers you will pull viewers no matter when you go live, but as a small fry that is just not the case.
People will need to know when you will be live so they can tune in and watch you. As a small streamer myself I have had a few people message me and ask when I will be going live.
Imagine if I messaged back and said “not sure, I’ll let you know”. How reliable is that? Such a weak answer. Make a time to stream so that way you can tell people when they can tune in to watch you.
I feel like having a schedule also helps me to better plan my streams as well. Create a schedule so that way anyone who might visit your channel can know when to check you out.
And if you need help with creating a schedule on Twitch, check out my video below.
7. Be Consistent
Consistency is another key when looking for your first few viewers. Too any streamers stream for a few weeks to a month and then give up because they are not where they want to be…..ummmmm what?
There are people who have been streaming for 10 years and are barely beginning to break through. The main thing is being consistent and not giving up.
You might have a stream where you get a few people to pop in, but then you go missing for two weeks and those people have forgotten all about you.
You have to be someone your viewers can rely on. But don’t burn yourself out either. If you want to know I think you should stream less to grow, check out my video below.
8. Invite People You Game With to Watch Your Streams
Surprisingly, this actually works. I have had a few people I queue up with actually pop in my streams once I tell them that I am a streamer.
And it is like the old saying goes, once you get people in your streams as a streamer it is up to you to keep them around.
And the beautiful thing is when you queue up with people they are locked in with you for as long as the game lasts. So pitch your stream. You have nothing to lose.
9. Invite Friends and Family to Watch Your Streams
This is a no brainer. You probably have one or two family members or friends who would be willing to pop in and watch you stream.
Shoot they could even just turn your stream on and legit sit. Even having a few viewers in your stream will bump you up in the channel rankings.
And if they are willing to chat and engage with your stream, even better. Don’t be shy to post your stream on your personal socials and see if anyone you know is down to pop in.
10. Be Helpful on Reddit
This is another low key tip. Reddit is packed full of streamers and gamers of all kinds. Now there are two ways to approach Reddit.
One, you could approach it as a streamer. There are so many cool threads on Reddit where you can share your tips and tricks for streaming. You can even promote your stream in some threads.
But if you are able to help someone out with their stream they may feel inclined to show you some support and might just pop in your stream. You can also find sly ways to promote your streams in these threads by being helpful and showing off your stream.
The other way to approach this is by being helpful in different gaming threads. Maybe someone is stuck on a level, or is looking for ways to improve, well that’s where you come in.
Maybe they can stop by your stream and get some pointers from you? You catching my drift? There are many streamers who got started by being helpful in Reddit threads.
11. Use a Camera
Straight up you will just get more people stopping by if you use a camera when you stream. Almost all major streamers use a camera. It’s hard to grow without using one.
People who use Twitch want to feel connected to the streamers they watch. It’s harder to feel connected to someone you can’t even see.
In my own experience when I first started streaming I did not use a camera and to be honest, almost nobody stopped by my streams. Sad Face. ????
Now I stream with my Logitech Brio Webcam (which you can see here on Amazon) and I get WAY more people stopping by than I used to.
You can also do more with a camera. So you may be camera shy, but you are going to have to get over that shyness if you want to grow on Twitch.
And webcams are cheap too! You can one such as the Aukey FHD (click here to see on Amazon) that is a great webcam and super budget friendly. That is the webcam I started with and it worked just fine.
If you are adamant though about not using a webcam then check out my video below for streaming without using a camera.
12. Have Overlays
Another thing you can do to increase viewer engagement, as well as draw people into your streams is using overlays on your streams. If you want to know what overlays are, check out this article here.
Overlays are exciting. People like seeing the alerts go off and seeing their names displayed when they contribute to your stream.
Another thing overlays can do is make your stream stand out as people are scrolling through looking for streams to watch. You can’t set your thumbnails on Twitch. Twitch just takes whatever is on your screen and that is your thumbnail.
So when people are scrolling through and they see your stream with tons of cool graphics, and they see the stream next to you that is plain as can be, which one do you think they are more likely to click on and view?
Overlays are super easy to setup too if you go through a website like OWN3D.TV (click here to check them out). They are who I go to for my overlaps and emotes and they are great.
One click and your overlays all setup and ready to go. Super cool. If you want to see examples of their overlays, check out my Twitch channel by clicking here.
13. Be Engaged
This is super crucial. Probably the most important thing you can do honestly. You have to be engaging as a streamer if you want to get viewers in your stream.
As I am sure you have realized, the viewer count on Twitch is almost never accurate. People pop in and out of your streams and you don’t even know they’re there.
How do I know this? Well look at your stats. You will almost always have a higher amount of unique viewers than you will average viewers.
This means that people came in, but didn’t stick around. They were not engaged. So how do you increase engagement?
Well for one you should always be talking o your streams, even if it is just to yourself. Radio silence or dead air is lethal for a small streamer.
And since you never know who is in your streams since the viewer count is inaccurate, it is best to just always talk just in case or have something else going on just for those who sneak in.
And if someone pops in and says hi, acknowledge them. Start a convo. As a streamer you are an entertainer so you have to entertain those who stop in.
There are people who only like to watch small streamers because they feel like they get more interactions that way. So do your best to make everyone feel welcome and included in your streams.
As always, if you have any questions or just want to hang with me, stop by my Twitch channel here and say what’s up!
In the end, there are many things that you can do to get your first few viewers on Twitch, but I feel like the tips above will give you the most bang for your efforts.
As always, good luck my friends and may all of your streams come true.
Eric streams 3 days a week on Twitch and uploads weekly to Youtube under the moniker, StreamersPlaybook. He loves gaming, PCs, and anything else related to tech. He’s the founder of the website StreamersPlaybook and loves helping people answer their streaming, gaming, and PC questions.