Let us skip the origin stories and go directly why Twitch is the go-to place of video game streamers: community. Twitch is laser-focused on its mission and is on-rail on its vision. Twitch does not pretend to be anything else other than a haven for video game enthusiasts and nothing more.
Caption: Twitch is Going After Musicians too.
It’s closest rival, YouTube wants to be the be-all, end-all, online video solution. YouTube’s parent company, Google, is an advertising company so it necessarily wants to have all of the different industries to flock into its services. Twitch has this advantage of being the de facto place for all of video gaming needs.
The Twitch community’s dedication is astounding. An average user watches over 100 minutes’ worth of videos on the site per day. It is worth noting that these viewership is spread across several channels not concentrated on “personalities”. Any person could set up a stream and can get lightning in a bottle just by playing a game with a huge audience or even those games with a niche following.
Streaming on Twitch is popular because both the audience and the streamer have at least equal footing on the technical details of the subject matter, and technology as a whole. The audience already knows its way in the Internet so donations and interactions are rather easy to commence compared to the one-stop shop for everyone in other video hosting sites.
Indeed, the highly engaged community that Twitch was able to snatch is astounding. It is not like the gaming community is an obscure unknown group of people; they are already active even at the early stages of the Internet. It is indeed a mystery why gamers were underserved given that arguably they have the highest activity online.
One of the evidence that the Twitch has a close-knit relationship with its target demographics is TwitchCon. It is easy to interact with people in the Internet because of convenience and ‘keyboard courage’. But to actually gather the people infamously stereotyped as basement dwellers and socially inept in a physical plane is an achievement by itself. These are the things that cannot be brute forced by money or otherwise YouTube Gaming convention could have been a thing. TwitchCon is a success, people actually attended the event.
Twitch also has this mom-and-pop shop appeal. Anyone who had to deal with Google’s support system will tell you that it does not exist, at least for publishers. Twitch maintains constant communication with its streamers and audience. They do not just appear during the times when they are there to ban you or demonetized your channel. They can be reached and answer to your queries much faster than Google.
Twitch was able to cultivate a culture that responds to each other. The streaming site is able to tap on an audience that responds well with attention. That is not a dig to gamers, but this is what every company should strive to be: open communication.