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When promoting a game, industry-related media coverage still matters, but often the game will manage to achieve much more if a streamer makes an overview video or an online broadcast of his gaming experience.
Through a business prism, live streaming of playthroughs on such video hosting websites as Twitch, GoodGame, and YouTube have a great potential in terms of advertising and marketing collaboration. What is more, as we noted in our blog many times, viewers of game streams are interesting not only for developers and publishers, but also for brands not related to game industry. However, the streaming market is not being developed as actively as other platforms and standard advertising integrations yet.
According to QIWI, in 2019 the value of the game streaming market in Russia was 21.6 billion rubles at the very least, with an annual 20% growth potential in the next three years (and this is a forecast of a pre-COVID growth of the gaming segment audience, including stream viewers). Two thirds of stream viewers in Russia are a mature, financially reliable audience who watches streams instead of TV series in order to relax and take mind off things. 47% stream fans watch them daily for more than two hours, with one fourth of them doing it after work.
This can be building brand awareness—for this, popular streamers should be brought in who will let you get the maximum number of views. However, if the goal is to foster loyalty to a game or a game brand, one should be more careful when choosing a streamer and select a ‘guru’ of relevant game genre walkthroughs.
The main method of search for streamers is to go to Twitch or YouTube and start watching streams for hours. If we talk about big influencers, you can address ratings of top Russian-speaking streamers on YouTube and Twitch.
A profile of a channel viewer is clearly defined by a genre of a game broadcast by a streamer. Dota 2 channels are mostly watched by youth, Hearthstone and Counter-Strike by older people, and World of Tanks by adult men. However, the headline is that every of them watches two hours of game content a day on average.
Someone may say that this should be step 2, but there are some streamers who only work with certain ad formats, and this factor should also be taken into account in your strategy. Unlike bloggers, streamers work live, and there will be no chance to ‘reshoot’. Another, but not the least of the factors that should be considered is that streamers reject anything that can spoil their channel’s reputation. That is why try to make an individual partnership offer, based on the channel specifics and possible advertising integrations. When cooperating with streamers, key advertising formats can be overlays, when a streamer changes a channel backgrounds to a brand image, banners, voice announcements or product placement, as well as a giveaway of paid in-game content (this can be both a free game entry code and separate in-game features).
Apart from that, you can elaborate a creatively different format of collaboration with streamers, depending on needs and opportunities of a particular game, for instance, organize a tournament among streamers to promote an MMORPG.
After you have prepared a list of streamers, it is high time to communicate with them and learn who of them will want to play your game. As a rule, live streamers may need a copy of your game or an entry code. Besides, they need a story that they will be able to share with their viewers afterwards.
Keep in mind that there is a difference between Twitch and YouTube. While it is more about a show on Twitch, on YouTube bloggers are more likely to make videos where they try to briefly tell about what may be of interest for their viewers, and their main task is to make people continue watching their videos. As for Twitch, streams can last for hours, that is why a history of your game or brand, some features etc. can be of some help for live streamers.
If a video about your game is already available online, make sure to send a link to the streamer so that it would be easier for him or her to understand how much he or she will benefit from this collaboration and whether the game will be interesting for his or her viewers.
Live streamers, as a rule, announce the time of their next video. That is why try to plan out the placement so that by the time when the game is launched, you would already have had understanding with all targeted streamers concerning the stream time and ensured that they have access codes. Streamers are not always punctual, therefore, do not hesitate to remind of your arrangements, including the stream start time. If you have several streamers at your beck and call who are ready to get engaged into work, this minimizes the risks to fail the campaign.
Most often, streamers are unwilling to see into processes, in which advertisers are trying to involve them. It is more important for them to maintain a trust-based relationship with the audience than to agree to cooperate with a brand that can potentially pass them off as ‘sold-out’. Image is of no less importance for them than for brands themselves, that is why they feel like choosing those whom they trust already.
The most difficult thing is to catch a streamer’s eye, to provoke their interest, and to get feedback. RMAA Games experts will help you organize effective collaboration with Russian-speaking streamers to promote your game in the market of Russia and CIS countries.
Ready to partner with the specialists in Russian marketing and advertising?
About the Author
Head of Digital, editor-in-chief of the RMAA Agency Blog