There’s a general assumption that everyone who streams on platforms like Twitch and YouTube makes money for doing it. It’s a common misconception, as very few streamers and content creators actually make enough money to earn a living from streaming. However, we’re here today to take you one step closer to that dream, teaching you how to make money from streaming. There are several ways it can be accomplished, but some are much more complex than others.
For the most part, you’ll only make money as a successful streamer. While there may be a few dollars roaming around at the lower end of the streaming spectrum, it really is just the biggest streamers that make enough money to support their life off-stream. It takes a lot of hard work, dedication, and time to become a high-paid streamer. So, if you’re eager to learn how to make money from streaming, read on – we’ve covered everything you need to know.
How Much Money Can You Make From Streaming?
There are creators at the top of the food chain that are now multi-millionaires because of their streaming escapades. At the top of the table, some creators boast a net worth that rivals some actors and musicians, and they’ll live in mansions while driving around in Lamborghinis. It’s a lavish and attractive life for some, but there is such a small percentage of people that will ultimately reach that level.
Here are some of the highest-earning streamers:
- Tyler ‘Ninja’ Blevins – $50,000,000 net worth
- Michael ‘Shroud’ Grzesiek – $25,000,000 net worth
- Turner ‘Tfue’ Tenney – $20,000,000 net worth
- Rachell ‘Valkyrae’ Hofstetter – $15,000,000 net worth
This group makes up some of the most subbed Twitch streamers, and when they go live, tens of thousands of people flock to watch the stream. However, it’s important to bear in mind that almost no top-tier streamer makes all their money simply from the streams themselves. There’s a lot of diversification that takes place, and many of the biggest content creators have brands, lines of merchandise, investments, and sponsorships that all serve to boost their net worth.
As a small streamer, you’ll be making single-digit dollars for a long time. If you’re good enough to make the cut and grow on Twitch, for example, then it stands to reason that you’ll get bigger and your journey will become more profitable over time. It takes building a community and a strong presence to accomplish this goal, though. In this guide, we’ll teach you how to make money from streaming from the moment you start gaining followers on your chosen platform.
How To Make Money From Streaming
As we’ve explained, there are several ways that you can make money as a streamer, but the vast majority of these ways will take time, effort, and dedication. There are no overnight success stories in streaming, and for the most part, the streamers at the top have taken years to get there. For instance, Dr Disrespect, one of the world’s most iconic content creators, started his journey more than ten years ago, when streaming was by no means a popular activity.
We already provided you with useful tips for streaming, but let’s go through some of the best ways you can make money from streaming.
1. Gain paid subscribers on Twitch or YouTube
If you’ve built a fantastic streaming setup and you regularly put out high-quality content, then it stands to reason that you’ll gain followers. However, when you ‘level up’ a little on these streaming platforms, you’ll unlock the ability to earn paid subscribers. These are the viewers that essentially pay to support you, opting to sign up for a monthly ‘donation’ that earns them benefits in your stream. If you’re networking well enough and are an engaging streamer, then paid subscribers should organically arrive.
2. Unlock paid sponsorships and brand deals
If you’re a fast-growing streamer with lots of viewers, brands will recognise your marketing potential and may want to partner up. Typically, they’ll offer you something – money or other valuable goods – in exchange for you endorsing or promoting their product on your channel. This works for YouTube as well, as some smaller brands will jump at the chance to ‘sponsor’ a video. As you can probably expect, the bigger the creator you are, the more valuable the sponsorships will be.
3. Brand affiliation and commission schemes
Before you hit the paid sponsorships, you’re much more likely to land an affiliate deal. These are all too common in the world of streaming, and they’re typically aimed at small creators looking to get a foothold in the business. For example, there may be a hydration brand that will offer you an exclusive code that you can distribute, and any viewers or users that use that code to purchase something will earn you a small percentage of the value of that sale back in cash or vouchers.
4. Earn through ad revenue
Ad revenue is a smaller earner and it typically won’t earn a streamer all that much in terms of money, but it’s something passive that requires very little energy to take care of. For instance, on Twitch, streamers can run ads during their broadcast, and while some may consider them disruptive, they’re essentially free money. At first, only a few pennies will be earned in ad revenue, but eventually, Twitch will offer bold incentives that come hand-in-hand with hefty compensation targets.
5. Secure donations from your community
Once you’ve built up a community that revolves around your content and your stream, you’ll see that the most dedicated fans will be willing to make kind donations to the upkeep of your stream. This is something that is absolutely not guaranteed, as it depends on the kindness and generosity of what will almost certainly be strangers. On Twitch, when you’re an affiliate, you can earn ‘bits’, or alternatively, you can secure cash donations through a platform like PayPal.
Read Also: What is a Twitch Bit?
Not Everyone Will Make Money From Streaming
Whether you’ve just gotten started and you’re trying to figure out how to stream on Twitch or if you’ve been streaming for years, you’ll want to maximise your financial gains. It’s one of the core reasons so many people stream, and for a minute portion of that global community, a realistic living can be made from streaming. However, it’s so important to bear in mind that very few people will earn a lot of money through content creation, and most of them that do will only make money after a long period of time.
There are ‘big breaks’ and miraculous events that may bring thousands of followers overnight, but there are so many things that you’ll need to do to maintain steady growth. It’s a saturated and competitive world out there, and you’re essentially fighting for every viewer.
Ultimately, you’ll need goals, targets, and a plan for how to reach them. Once you’ve built your setup, set your sights on landing one hundred followers, then one thousand followers, and then a small sponsorship deal, and then an ad incentive… It’s a long path, but it’s easy enough to get started with as long as you know what the end goals are.