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How to become a Streamer (a.k.a Content Creators)

Interested in streaming online on platforms such as YouTube, Twitch, Facebook, Trovo? I am kind of considering at looking into recording some educational tutorials and such since we are all still holed up in our homes these past couple of years and sort of have most of the equipment anyways. You just have to have a niche market to cater to, depending on what topic you are passionate about to be a content creator. I feel like I am a bit late to the game – no pun intended! I am not a gamer at all but do watch a lot of instructional content online. Streaming has been around for quite a long time and has been for the most part aimed at the gaming community. After watching a few streamers (that are NOT gamer related) here and there I have put together some information that I have come across and figured I would outline and share what is involved, if anyone seems to find it helpful.

SOFTWARE

OBS Project
  • open source and free application called “Open Broadcaster Software”
  • can be used with any web camera
  • can create scenes to switch back/forth from
  • can setup for streaming on popular platforms (YouTube, Twitch, Facebook and more)

OBS VirtualCam
  • Use this plugin so that that you can force a custom background on ANY video conferencing software.

EPOC Cam
  • turn any mobile phone into webcam
  • it is free for now and there is a PRO version with more features

StreamLabs
  • all-in-one live streaming application
  • can include professional overlays
  • stream multiple platforms at once

StreamElements
  • marketplace for pre-made graphics and widgets
  • such as overlays, alerts, chatbots, etc.

Adobe Creative Cloud – Photoshop, Illustrator, After Effects
  • With these professional tools you can create your 2D images with alpha channels needed to create overlays for a more customized look and design by hand. Otherwise if you are not creatively inclined consider looking at marketplaces that have items that were created with these tools or similar as noted above.

Nightbot (used for twitch)
  • allows you to add filters and additional parameters for audiences
  • control banner artwork too.

HARDWARE

Elgato
  • carries all products for creators this includes – microphones, cameras, capture cards, stream deck, lighting, and green screen
  • all item needed packaged under $1000

POST PRODUCTION

[VIDEO]
  • DaVinci Resolve by Blackmagic Design –
    I really like this application as it is free to use at the moment. If you are familiar with Adobe Premiere in any way then you will be accustomed to figuring out how to navigate around the user interface.
[AUDIO]
  • Pro Tools
    If you really want to get nit-picky with editing your audio this is a great product, I was introduced to this application in college as they had a freeware version at the time for a multimedia program I was in.
  • Adobe Audition
    Is the professional grade audio workstation if you want to edit, mix, record and restore audio.
[3D DESIGN]

Sometimes you just want to customize a visual element or even create a world, you can utilize 3D applications to do the job.

  • Blender (Open Source)
    This is a great app if you are just getting started in 3D and want to learn the tools and language of design and breaking into the industry.
  • 3D Studio Max, Maya, Cinema 4D – Maxon
    These are other options on the market that professional artists use and have often a steeper learning curve but a wider audience. Although the licensing is very expensive the tools are more granular to use.
  • Unity, Unreal Engine, V-Ray
    These are rendering engine platforms that integrate with 3D programs to make the final images and videos of your projects look as high quality and realistic as possible.
  • 3D Marketplace’s
    If you are not inclined to recreate the wheel you may look at using 3rd party objects to integrate into your 3D scene projects. If you google the term above you will find all sorts of items that creators have already built for which you can purchase.
  • Spline Design
    I came across this online app as a means to build something quick for a webpage but you could create content from it even for video.

EDUCATION

I found Michael Feyrer Jr. content on YouTube to be quite a wealth of information on what streamers use and how they use it and work with monetization. So check out his content!

I also find Mr. Beast to be an interesting channel as well, he is the #1 content creator on the YouTube platform. Feel like I have been living under a rock because I had never heard of him before until this year. He has a very interesting background and has quite a fascinating marketing mindset as well. Has a tremendous way of generating viral campaigns for all the content he delivers. It is amazing how much money is awarded to many of the contestants on his over-the-top IRL games he creates but he does such great amazing charity work as well. You can learn quite a lot about his background from watching some of the past interviews he has done on other channels that he has appeared on.

Ways Content Creators Grow Their Streaming Channels

Retention is very important for content creators. Scaling up something that is done right is easier than trying to scale when something is done wrong.

  • By retaining users you will create loyalty.
  • Loyalty creates implicitly word of mouth awareness (for your channel).
  • Word of mouth is the cheapest and most effective way to market a streaming channel.

Think about it, your 3 loyal followers who watch you stream every day tell 3 of their best friends each about your channel and how fun and what great quality your work is. They decide to watch the stream too so they can catch it and see what all the hype and excitement is about. Then their friends of friends hear about it too. Now 9 new people are viewing your channel, 3 loyal + 9 new followers = 12 total.

Say you retain 50% of these viewers you just doubled your following without spending $1 just by being nice, entertaining and cultivating your followers.

Streamers will also retain an audience by staying active outside of live streams through social media channels (Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, TikTok, etc) or through forums like Discord or Slack. Creating a sense of community around the stream is extremely important.

Just be aware that when you are serving a small numbers of followers from the start to not setup too many social channels. Especially if you have no real good understanding of each one of them as you can really begin to spread yourself too thin. Particularly if you are not even seen participating with your viewers on the regular, it becomes noticeable. It could even penalize you at the start in the creation of your brand, so start with 1 or 2 popular social media channels first. As the audience grows larger you also have to think of adding MODs in some of these these social channels. However be careful who you entrust by who you put in these roles as they are seen as an extension of you. (Some MODs can rather have a big ego with these roles and go on a bit of power trip and abuse their authority. Sometimes unnecessarily banning or causing frustrations with members that can cost them to leave. As social rule norms should be set across all platforms and not get overcomplicated.) So keep those you put in charge in-line so the likelihood of anyone unfollowing your platforms never happens anytime soon.

Lastly streaming frequently and on a consistent schedule for long stretches of time allows a streamer to maximize chances of being discovered. Also it provides an audience with more content, as well as providing them with more value which will do wonders for their loyalty and personal investment in the channel and social circles.

Remember, as a content creator, you might be the most likable and entertaining streamer in the world, but if you are not putting yourself out there on a consistent basis then no one is going to pay attention.

Monetization

Content Creators can make quite a killing with an income on their streams/channel and it often comes in various forms from:

  • acquiring constant revenue stream that comes from the creators content catalogue
  • memberships tiers that occur monthly/quarterly/yearly which include certain perks to access exclusive things
  • donations given during streams and events
  • branded sponsorships and advertising opportunities
  • public appearances by attending events that occur outside of a stream/channel
  • selling customized merchandise
  • provide consulting services
  • provide online teaching
  • …and the newest form through NFTs (ex: iJustine’s “@jpig“)

IN CLOSING

Here is one thing to leave you with from this blog entry. Just because you might have the means to acquire the material product(s) to create a home studio, stream and create content, the real talent comes down to the ideas, storyboarding, script writing and video editing on the content you make. If the story and messaging come across as entertaining, authentic, and engaging then that right there will bring the audience to you.

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7 replies on “How to become a Streamer (a.k.a Content Creators)”

Wow this is great! I was thinking of creating a stream myself and was not sure what I needed to get started up. This guide is really helpful!

Michael Feyrer’s content is absolutely a great resource. I started getting my stream up in no time watching his videos.

Good post. I learn something totally new and challenging on websites I stumbleupon on a daily basis. It will always be interesting to read through articles from other authors and practice a little something from other sites.

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Everything is very open with a very clear description of the issues. It was definitely informative. Your website is very useful. Thanks for sharing!

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