Determine why you want to be a streamer and set your goals
Before you dive into streaming, it’s important to know why you’re doing it and clarify your purpose. Live streaming is one of the most exciting and authentic forms of media in the world, but success doesn’t come overnight.
To improve your chances of success, we must first understand the reason why we are doing this. Establishing this purpose is important for several reasons.
- Motivation: We need to know why we are fighting for something. We must give ourselves a goal to direct our efforts. It can be anything, but this goal must be present.
- Focus: If we know what we are doing and why, then by proxy, we know what we are not doing. Succeeding at something requires focus and attention. Focus is created by saying no to things that are not important. If we know “the why” and understand what is important, we can focus by deprioritizing everything else.
- Focus: Looking deep down within yourself to understand why you are embarking on this journey will enable you to bring your best self forward as a creator. This is critical. Only you know your true self, and you will have a higher chance of succeeding by being yourself rather than acting as someone else.
Pause and take 15 minutes to reflect on “the why.” Keep digging deeper until you understand why you are passionate about live streaming. This will help motivate you to push through hard times and continue to improve towards your goal.
Your “why” could be any number of things. Maybe you want the flexibility to set your own hours and work when you want. It could be because you don’t like your job and want to try something new.
Set Clear Goals
Hopefully, we are starting to establish why you are passionate about live streaming. This process may take time, and that is okay. Once we have a semblance of "the why," let's think about our goals as a creator.
What would success look like 30 days from now? What about 90 days? What about a year from now?
Why is this important? First, it's critical to break down the problem into component parts. The idea of becoming a partnered streamer seems enormous as an affiliate. The idea of streaming at all is equally as intimidating if you are starting from scratch. That is because both end-states are big goals that involve several complicated decisions. Breaking them down will simplify the path forward. It will add structure. Second, it will enable us to celebrate some success early. Celebrating wins along the way is important for our mental health and energy levels.
Often, new streamers set goals outside of their control such as attaining a certain number of followers or concurrent viewers. Many start with a mindset of streaming and wanting to get 10, 20, or 100 viewers and feel demotivated when they don’t achieve it.
When first starting out, you should focus on what you can control such as:
- Number of hours you stream and how consistent you are with your streams.
- Amount of VoD content you create.
- Time you allocate to researching and building skills.
Take some time now and write down a few goals you’d like to achieve in the next week, month, two months, and three months. These can range from a follower, subscriber, or donation goals. If you are a new streamer, you can start by setting a goal to stream a certain number of hours.
Regardless of your level, here are some examples of goals all streamers can work on:
- Building a community. Before building viewers and followers, you need a community. Which community are you a part of, and what can your streams offer to that community?
- Monetizing your stream. There are several ways to monetize your stream from donations and subscriptions to ads and sponsorships. Choose your monetization method based on your income goal.
- Gaining partnership with a streaming platform. Many streamers want to become Twitch partners or affiliates. However these goals are broad and should be broken down even further. For example, there are four requirements for becoming a Twitch Affiliate. Each of these requirements can be a smaller goal.
- Increase broadcast frequency. Try to build a streaming schedule for yourself and stick to it. Maybe it’s streaming once a week on Tuesdays. By streaming on a regular basis, you let your audience know when to expect you. Once you find success with your current frequency, see if you can increase it some more.
Let’s make a matrix and write it down. Add your goals here and revisit them at the end of each time frame. Evaluate how well you have stuck to your goals. Don’t see missed deadlines as failures. Instead give yourself additional time to complete tasks in the future and readjust your "roadmap". Eventually, you’ll get the hang of approximately how long something should take. Double down on efforts that are working and don’t be afraid to change directions and experiment in new areas when it isn’t.