Twitch recently revealed big changes in the way it will compensate esports teams. The streaming service will look to cut back on payments made to teams who post clips on the Amazon-owned video platform. Zooming out, this move will assuredly benefit YouTube, which is seeing more gamers flocking to its platform.
More details about Twitch’s moves
Let’s start with the basics. Twitch’s new payment program takes money out of esports teams’ pockets. In addition, some teams have even been completely phased out of the payment program. Although the precise figures are still unclear, it could drastically alter the battle between Twitch and YouTube for streaming supremacy.
Some commentators have noted the new payment model will allow Twitch to focus on ensuring the biggest esports teams receive larger shares of revenue. But for everyone else, the cutbacks are already forcing some teams and esports stars to diversify their operations.
The case of Tyler “Ninja” Blevins
Recently we saw legendary Overwatch celebrity Tyler “Ninja” Blevins jumping ship from Twitch to join Mixer. This decision to sign up to Microsoft’s rival platform was undoubtedly a result of his substantial signing bonus. But the fact that Twitch lost its most-followed streamer shocked the esports world.
It comes at a time when there is growing competition among streaming brands. Alongside the likes of Twitch and Google-owned YouTube, we have seen both Mixer and Facebook enter the fray.
PS: I got 24 elims but its a new glitch and you cannot see it. pic.twitter.com/LRiyY0Yrsm
— Ninja (@Ninja) August 27, 2019
Such moves mean the competition is getting fiercer. Streaming services will have to offer something special to encourage esports teams to sign exclusive deals.
Will cross-posting become commonplace?
Twitch has dominated live streaming. But its relatively niche audience base – just 15 million daily viewers – has seen some esports teams spread their content to YouTube to cater to big-money sponsors.
As such, it’s common to find esports teams that live stream their games on Twitch but then create highlight reels for YouTube. YouTube, after all, boasts over two billion monthly viewers.
When watching a live Twitch stream, there is always the chance a viewer might cut in halfway through the content and miss the sponsor’s message. But by creating a highlight reel on YouTube, a sponsor’s message has a much better chance of being seen. In addition, YouTube offers much more powerful and insightful analytics to help marketers understand the exact demographics of an esports team’s fanbase.
Although Twitch does feature on-demand non-live esports tournaments videos, these are rarely foregrounded, and the viewership for such content often suffers. All these factors show why cross-posting between YouTube and Twitch, or even Mixer, could become much more commonplace in the future.
And you, what’s your favorite channel and what do you think about esports betting on streamers?