While humans are creatures of habit, we’re also multifaceted beings that have vast interests. When you walk into the world of live streaming (or anything else that may fall under the “content creation” umbrella, for that matter), you’re often encouraged by experts and peers alike to find a niche and stick to it. It’s incontestable that this is a proven way to see steady growth as a live streamer as people know exactly what they’re getting when they visit your channel. However, from the vantage point of a streamer, things can become very mundane rather quickly. Hence why many people are opting to become variety streamers versus only posting within a specific niche.
Whether you’re switching up the games you play on your channel, or quite literally varying the type of content you stream through one stream or across many, there are some ways you can do so without losing your audience in the process. If you want to start off your stream playing the newest game release and end off just chatting about something happening in pop culture, that’s your prerogative—keep reading to learn some helpful tips and tricks for thriving as a variety streamer.
Use Different Overlays for Different Segments of Stream Categories
Visuals play a significant role in engaging your viewers during your live stream. In the spirit of keeping things interesting, opt to have a unique overlay design for each game or segment of your stream. This can also help signify a shift in content. Also, play around with the placement of certain visual elements. For example, having a prominently displayed chat box during a "just chatting" segment vs. gameplay front and center when gaming.
Luckily for you, platforms like Streamlabs have tons of overlays that can spice up your live stream, no matter if you’re just chatting or need an overlay for an intense game of Armored Core. FYI, there are many free overlays available in the Streamlabs library, however Streamlabs Ultra subscribers have access to even more premium options.
Collab with Other Streamers or Invite Guests
One of the best ways to bring fresh energy and diversity to your streams is through collaboration with other creators. Whether you're teaming up for a multiplayer gaming session, co-hosting a "just chatting" segment, or inviting a guest for an interview, collaborations can be a game-changer. They not only introduce your audience to new personalities but also provide opportunities for cross-promotion, potentially drawing new viewers to your channel from the collaborator's community and vice versa.
Tools like Streamlabs' Collab Cam (which is available through the Streamlabs Mobile app and Streamlabs Desktop) make this process seamless, allowing you to stream with friends (up to one additional guest for the free version and up to 11 guests for Streamlabs Ultra subscribers) with just the drop of a link. Read our guide on using Collab Cam to build a community to learn more about using this tool to grow your audience.
Let Viewers Get in on Game Picks
By inviting viewers to suggest or vote on future content, you both bolster engagement and generate fresh ideas (which can be particularly helpful when you’re in a bit of a creative rut). This “democratic” approach to variety streaming ensures you're in sync with what your audience wants and deliver on it.
Create a Consistent Schedule
Even if your content varies, having set stream times is essential. It's about building a ritual for your viewers. By promoting your schedule on other platforms, you can potentially block these times in your audience's routine (or at least in their heads) so they can remember to tap into your live stream. But to keep things exciting, you can also pre plan a day where your audience knows you’ll be streaming but has no clue exactly what it will be.
Engage with Your Community Off-Stream
Relationships aren't limited to streaming hours. Engaging on social platforms like Instagram, Twitter or Discord deepens your connection with your viewers. Sharing snippets of your life or discussing interests can foster a strong community, while providing insights to other subjects your audience may be interested in.
Lead with Personality
Some of the most successful variety streamers shine because of one key element—their unique, killer personality. While games, trends, and hot topics might draw viewers initially, it's the streamer's charisma, humor, and authenticity that keep them returning. Embrace who you are, and let your unique flair be the cornerstone of your streams.
Only Stream Things You’re Actually Passionate About
Authenticity is magnetic. Streaming content that genuinely excites you ensures your reactions are organic and engaging. It's tempting to ride every trend, but it's vital to discern if it aligns with your interests. Quality over quantity, always.
Although it poses unique challenges, the rewards of variety streaming in terms of personal fulfillment and fostering viewer connections (when done right) are unparalleled. By leveraging strategies such as those mentioned in this blog post, your live streaming days ahead can be diverse and deeply engaging. Here's to creating content as multifaceted as our passions!