Twitch has had its ups and downs this year, but the latest feature that the platform is testing out will give smaller streamers a real shot at growing their communities by using what the platform is calling Boost This Stream. Until now, small streamers can struggle for months to grow their audiences by a few viewers, but that could all change if Twitch's Boost This Stream proves effective.
While Twitch is the internet's largest streaming platform for gamers, it can be hard for newcomers to get their feet in the door. Twitch has reported 2.2 million streamers that utilize the platform for 15 million daily viewers. In a sea of constant content creation, larger streamers dominate the platform while minnow sized channels are left to fight for an average of 3-4 viewers. Twitch viewers could select one of the website's categories and filter streams by viewer count, but many viewers come to the platform for users they have come to know and love. This makes Twitch's home page a prime spot for discovering new streams.
Twitch News host Zach Bussey was the first to report the Community Boost feature on Twitter. According to Bussey, Boost This Stream is a challenge where Twitch viewers can donate Channel Points to an overall goal. The number of points is predetermined by Twitch depending on the size of that streamer's community. Streamers who meet this goal will be featured on the front page of Twitch under the "Recommended live channels" section with a Promoted tag on the stream's thumbnail.
This feature is doubly effective as it utilizes Channel Points instead of bits or other forms of monetary exchange. Channel Points are a streamer specific currency which viewers earn passively by watching streams and chatting. These are slowly accumulated over time, and viewers can donate a maximum of 2,000 points per day to the streamer's Boost This Stream goal. Bussey reported that the feature is already available to select small streamers and that the reward for reaching the goal is a set number of impressions from the front page.
This is a great way for small streamers to reach the front page, but will it be very effective. A poll held by Bussey asked 640 responders how often they look at the front page of Twitch for recommended streamers. 73% responded that they never seek new communities from the front page, while only 5% claim that they look at their front pages daily. Nevertheless, Twitch's Boost This Stream is a step in the right direction for supporting small creators.