Days after posting new security tools Designed to protect streamers against incursions of hate, Twitch is experimenting with a new feature that will allow users to pay money to promote a broadcast. Rumors have been circulating on social media that the new feature is in the works, and a Twitch spokesperson has now confirmed that The edge you are testing the function with a small number of transmitters.
“We are launching an experiment on a small number of growing channels that allows their communities to buy promotions on highly visible parts of Twitch,” said a Twitch spokesperson.
Twitch went into detail about the new checkout boost feature during its Patch Notes show. See the relevant part of the program. here.
The promotion works like this. For 10 minutes during a broadcast, a notification will appear informing viewers that the boost option is available. Participating viewers can pay for a number of referrals. In the demo, there are two purchase levels: 1,000 recommendations for 0.99 cents and 3,000 recommendations for $ 2.97. These impulse buy windows occur randomly for participating streamers and can happen as often as every time a streamer is activated.
This Boost feature is essentially a paid version of the “Boost This Stream” community challenge program. already in place. In Boost this stream, viewers can pool channel points, essentially points that a viewer earns by participating in streaming activities like follow-up and follow-through, and use them to promote a creator across the platform.
Jacob Rosok, Product Manager for Twitch, said that this new paid program was born out of community feedback. He said streamers wanted more opportunities to promote their broadcast and wanted that promotion to have more impact. That meaning, then, appears to be that Twitch simply gives the “hit” a monetary value. The more money spent on referrals, the more cover exposure a streamer gets, the more “impact” an enhanced broadcast has for its creator.
At any given time, there are hundreds of thousands of creators streaming on Twitch, all vying for more eyes on your stream. But the algorithm that suggests streamers to viewers tends to favor the best streamers, giants like Amouranth and auronplay, which has millions of subscribers and an average of tens of thousands of viewers at a time. So for smaller streamers, one of their only hopes of discovery hinges on landing on the coveted Twitch cover. This new boost program essentially allows streamers to bypass the luck of the algorithm giveaway and pay directly for their time at the top. Getting to the front page means more viewers. More viewers means more revenue from ads, more revenue from subscriptions, and greater appeal when applying for sponsorships, which also generates, you guessed it, more revenue.
And at all levels, Twitch is taking a piece of that revenue. Twitch currently takes 50 percent of a streamer’s subscription revenue (less if you’re a special partner). When a viewer buys bits to cheer on, Twitch takes a share of that purchase too. Twitch also gets a cut of the ad revenue, but none of the money spent to power a stream is split with the creator.
It feels a bit like a gacha game. Sure, you can play for free (by participating in community challenges), but for a chance to do good things (as is the rapid growth of the community), you have to pay. And like any gacha game, there will inevitably be whales. Twitch knows that community members want their streamers to be successful. So what better way to ensure that success than simply paying for it.
“We believe that paying to help a creator grow their community will be worth it to their fans,” says Rosok.
There are other ways for viewers to support streamers and for streamers to find larger audiences. Tags allow viewers to search for broadcasts that meet their specific criteria. Raids (of the hateless variety) share the viewers of one creator with another. Promotions during Black History Month, Pride Month, and Global Accessibility Awareness Day also push smaller streamers to the top of the home page. Rosok also emphasizes that the free version of the Streaming Improvement Community Challenge will continue to be available to people who don’t want to spend money but still want to support their streamers.
Right now, the show is only aimed at small streamers with fewer than 250 followers and will run for the next four weeks. Twitch will share data with creators so they can measure the impact a boost has on their traffic. Twitch also emphasizes that this is just an experiment and that there is no guarantee that the program will be rolled out across the site or even in its current form.
“This experiment is not final and will continue to evolve based on community feedback,” says a Twitch spokesperson.