FollowTrainTV

Twitch Tutorials and Streaming Advice

Posts Tagged ‘twitch tv’

How to get 20 viewers on Twitch

Many people that are new to Twitch get one or two viewers in their initial streams and often sit for hours with zero viewers. Naturally this can cause a lot of frustration and make them question their decision of becoming a Twitch streamer. If you’re wondering how to get your first 20 viewers on Twitch, we’ve put together a list of things you can do right now to edge closer to those first 20 viewers!

Just get more exposure

No surprise here, exposure is the key to any online traffic. When you are focusing on getting you your first 20 viewers, you need a plan to introduce your stream to viewers and the best way to do that is through social media and forums. A great benefit to using social media is that you can grow your social accounts when your not at your computer via your mobile phone. Don’t forget to announce the fact that your going live on your social media accounts.

Watch your own stream

Some people would call this cheating but this tactic can get you 2–3 viewers. You can use mobile devices to watch your own stream. Remember for every viewer you have you appear higher up the Twitch category page, the higher you are the more viewers you get. Just make sure that you have enough bandwidth and don’t negatively effect your streams performance.

Pick the right games

If you don’t have a strong social media presence or YouTube subscriber count, it’s going to be pretty hard to get viewers if your playing a popular game like CS:GO or LoL. Rather than going for a game that already has been streamed by multiple Twitch users go for less famous games, new releases or games made by indie developers to stand out from the masses which can prove extremely beneficial when you’re trying to get your first 20 viewers on Twitch.

Take advantage of big streamers streaming unpopular games

Continuing on from the last point, sometimes you might see a category with 3500 viewers and inside that category discover that there is only a few streamers and 3495 viewers are watching the same well known streamer. If you own that game and can jump on it quickly you can pick up some of the overflow traffic in that category.

Quality matters

The higher the quality the more the viewers. No one wants to watch a streamer that has low video quality, sound filled with static and no overlay. If you want viewers to actually watch your streams and return every time you stream then you need to make sure that the video quality is clear, the sound is easy to hear and your stream actually has a decent overlay.

Have fun

The most important thing you need to keep in mind is that you should be having fun! People can easily tell when a Twitch streamer is faking their excitement, scares or enthusiasm. People don’t want to watch you try to be funny, they want to watch you have fun playing a game, so that they can have fun too.

Reach out to others

If you’ve just launched your Twitch channel don’t have high expectations of getting hundreds or thousands of views on your first few streams. You can take part in shout-out events that more popular and bigger Twitch users hold but it’s like winning a lottery. Rather than focusing on bigger streamers focus on smaller Twitch streamers and try to get into their network. They are much more likely to give you a shout out which can result in you easily getting your first 20+ views on Twitch by being hosted by them which will helping you advance your Twitch career.

Use FollowTrain.tv

FollowTrain.tv was purposely built for new streamers to help them get a foot on the ladder, to help get an extra 10 or 20 viewers and to increase your streams exposure. Next time you stream ride the Follow Train at http://www.followtrain.tv to date it’s generated over 1,000,000 views for its users and over 70,000 follows.

Stream Regularly and have a schedule

Your favorite TV show is at the same time on the same day every week which allows people who are free at that time to tune in and enjoy the show. The same is true for Twitch streamers. I also understand that not every one can commit to a regular stream but even if it is just 2 hours per week of scheduled streaming time it will really help your channel create regular viewers.

The Final Word!

Focus on slowly growing rather than stressing about how to get more viewers. Try different things and find something that works for you and then do more of that and enjoy yourself rather than doing it only for the viewers. Follow these simple tips and you’ll surely start getting 20 or more viewers on your Twitch stream in no time.


How to set up a TeamSpeak Server with no port number on a subdomain

Before I moved the FollowTrainTV streamers community to Discord I was using both IRC and TeamSpeak to build up a community of streamers. One of the the first things I didn’t like about my original setup was that my TeamSpeak server address was horrible and difficult to remember. On top of that it had a port number attached to it. Being a technical guy I figured I could setup a subdomain on my current domain name and allow the traffic to be redirected easily.

I didn’t want to use the horrible long address given to me by my TeamSpeak service provider I wanted something simple and easy to remember so below I will show you the two ways I discovered, so that you can do the same. The first way is free and the second way cheap but in my case my current domain provider did not allow me to do it the free way so I needed to use a 3rd party to help me out.

Redirecting a subdomain to a TeamSpeak server using an SRV record

Straight out of the box some domain name providers will allow you to quickly and easily setup a subdomain on your account that can easily redirect traffic to your TeamSpeak server. You simply need to add an SRV record.

Here is a quick tutorial on how to setup the TeamSpeak SRV record in cPanel which is a very common software used by many web server hosting companies. If your hosting company does not use cPanel then you may have to email them to ask them how to add an SRV record.

Redirecting a subdomain to a TeamSpeak server without an SRV record

So it turns out I am one of the unlucky people who’s server / domain provider doesn’t have the ability to add an SRV record. Instead I had to use a third party provider to allow me to have a subdomain which can redirect traffic to my TeamSpeak server.

Enter TS3DNS.com a company that offers a redirect service for a small fee. I paid $6.99 for a one year subscription which allows me to achieve the same flexibility as the free option above. It’s simple to use and after 24 hours I was happy to see that I can now use a subdomain with no port number attached to connect to my TeamSpeak server. There was no way for my current hosting company to do this so I had to pay the $6.99 but it works perfectly and I am very happy.

The added bonus of setting up your TeamSpeak server under a subdomain

One of the cool side effects of this kind of setup is that if you change the company that provides you with your TeamSpeak server you do not have to tell all of your clan members and friends the new address. You simply adjust the DNS record and usually within around 10 minutes your existing subdomain will be pointing to your brand new server address. This is super important if you are looking to grow your community because every time you change the physical address of your server you will loose some of the people that visit your server.

The Final Word

If you are using TeamSpeak then you really should setup a subdomain for your server, how you do it depends entirely on who hosts your current domain name.

If you haven’t already checked out Discord then I suggest you do, because it was built with gamers in mind. Imagine if IRC and TeamSpeak had a baby together, well then you can begin to understand what Discord is. Discord has desktop apps, mobile apps, voice comms and a rich text chat all in one application that will encourage your community to idle and hang out on your server, It’s free and much easier to setup and use. It’s a no brainer!

If you want to try out Discord for the first time then you can join me and other Twitch streamers on the FollowTrainTV Community Discord.


Start streaming on Twitch – 7 Tips

In just over one and a half years of streaming on Twitch, I’ve gained nearly 20,000 followers (Which you can check here on my channel). I wanted to outline what I believe are the most important things you should be doing to maximize your potential when you start streaming on Twitch. Getting people to your stream is hard enough, keeping them there is even harder.

I have spent many hours reading and learning about streaming and the Twitch platform. I have also learned from personal experiences and the experience of others. I run followtrain.tv and I run a Twitch community where we discuss Twitch related topics. It would be fair to say I know a thing or two about streaming.

Here are 7 things to keep in mind when you are just start streaming on Twitch.

1. Make sure your internet connection is solid

You don’t need to run out and buy a dedicated T1 line when you start streaming on Twitch, but you definitely need to have a decent cable broadband or fibre optic connection. The number one thing you need to do is be able to stream and with a bad internet connection you will end up with a totally black screen or a laggy viewing experience. I already outlined in another post what the best settings to use when streaming, so make sure you check that out.

2. Get a decent microphone

People visit Twitch to watch and listen to people playing games. If your commentary is inaudible due to a low-quality microphone, you won’t get many followers or viewers. You don’t need a recording studio quality mic but you do need to be sure that your voice is clear and louder than your music or in-game sound, with little to no static or hum.

Try and get a microphone with built in noise reduction in case something is going on behind you, perhaps you live near a busy road and the windows are open because of the heat outside. These small sounds will be heard on your stream as just background noise which can really irritate people. I keep an updated list of what I consider to be the Best Hardware for Twitch.

3. Get some custom graphics and a decent overlay

Your channel and brand is important for people to remember you, starting at just $5 you can get custom graphic design service. You will create your HUD (Heads up Display) in your streaming software, something like OBS or xSplit. Personally, I do mine with OBS. The idea is to make sure that your stream looks good and is viewer friendly. There are a ton of streamers out there, so the viewer experience is going to be what sets you apart.

For example you could create a border around your webcam that tells something about your personality or your favorite game. It is also important that pop up notifications give praise where it is due. When someone gives you a donation or follows you you should have a pop up or something cool happening.

When viewers see a celebration over even the smallest of donations, they are more likely to donate a few dollars as well. Make an even bigger celebration for your top donors. Remember, people are throwing money at you for doing something you would probably be doing anyway, so make sure they know how grateful you are.

4. A HD webcam is a must

Okay, so maybe Lirik doesn’t use a webcam… but you are not Lirik and you didn’t start streaming nearly five years ago when he did. Do yourself a favour and buy a decent webcam. There are plenty of streamers who don’t use a webcam, this is true, they also they don’t have many followers or viewers. If you want to be one of them random unknown faces then be my guest but it wont help you grow on Twitch.

People like to see faces, even if you think you are the ugliest person on earth I promise you beauty is in the eye of the beholder. It’s just nice to have a face to go with the voice and the username, so don’t be shy.

I was simply amazed how much people did not troll me when I first used a webcam. Most people are genuinely friendly. We all got bullied a little school for one thing or another and that fear is still with us but in my experience on Twitch it’s not an issue. Really you should try it once or twice and I promise you wont regret it, in fact you will enjoy streaming even more. Yes it feels awkward at first and maybe you need to get comfortable with speaking before turning on the camera but sooner or later you need a webcam.

You want to be able to stream and record in high definition a 720p camera is the minimum, but a 1080p is always preferred. Many viewers, when looking for a new channel to watch, won’t even click on one unless they see a picture-in-picture cam. Read more about what I think is the best webcam for Twitch.

5. Interact with your viewers

There is only so much that hardware and software can do for you, and there are a ton of great players out there. After that, your persona has to carry you. You will truly begin to stand apart from the crowd and gain a following when people see your personality, and that means interacting. Gaining followers and regular viewers is really about being entertaining.

Once you have hundreds or thousands of followers, you may not be able to greet everyone by name, but at least when you are starting out, don’t let people slip in and out of your channel without even being acknowledged. Say something like, “Hi [username], welcome to the stream!” Try to answer questions that viewers ask, and even ask some of your own and check out the responses. Yes, you need to pay attention to the game too, but the game isn’t following you or making donations, so put your viewers first.

Don’t argue in the chat box. If someone is really being obnoxious, mute them quickly and move on. Do not waste time or energy with trolls, insta-ban them and forget about it, they will move on to someone else who will entertain their trolling efforts.

6. Get a chat bot for your stream

I’m not talking about view bots—those are a good way to get your channel banned. If you are a regular Twitch viewer, you probably already know what a chat bot is. Chat bots basically serve one purpose—they keep the chat box safe for you and your followers and provide additional interaction functionality.

They can ban people for saying certain words, they can tell users what music you are currently playing and they can even help you run giveaways and answer common questions for you. You can also give certain moderators the ability to add commands to some bots to further reduce the amount of work you have to do when streaming.

My personal favorite is DeepBot. DeepBot is not free and can be overwhelming at first, start with something like Moobot or Nightbot and consider DeepBot later on.

7. Be consistent and persistent

When you first start streaming on Twitch, setting up a schedule for streaming is in my opinion the single most important thing you can do if you want to build regular viewers. How do you expect to get regular viewers if you cant even be regular yourself?

Being consistent allows you to get repeat viewers rather than just competing for whoever happens to be on when you decide to stream. Don’t give up if your stream doesn’t take off straight away. Sometimes it takes a while for people to get to know you and decide that your channel is more fun or exciting than the other channels that are currently open.

Keep learning and striving to become a better streamer, watch other peoples streams and figure out why they have so many viewers. What are they doing differently and ask yourself how can you be more like them?

In my personal experience, last year when I had a three day a week schedule, I was able to build my viewers up to an average of around 70-80 people per stream. I took six months off in the Autumn of 2015 and when I returned I struggled to get just 10 viewers. At the time of writing this article I am now back averaging 30 viewers per stream but I only commit to one day per week, with an occasional impromptu stream on other days depending what is going on in my real life.

Sure, things can go wrong when you first start streaming on Twitch. Your Internet or power may go out during a stream. Someone could be trolling chat looking to pick a fight or harass other users. Hardware fails and software breaks, life issues and unexpected social happenings like friends and family turning up at your house. All of these things can effect your stream and your passion for streaming but don’t let setbacks get you down. The most successful channels are the ones that deal with all that adversity but continue pushing forward and making their followers glad to be there.

The Final Word

Hard work, research and commitment is what makes a top streamer. I hope you take the time to read more of my articles on this blog and I hope you can gain some insight into streaming on Twitch.

I spend a lot of time helping new streamers and I can show you how to get more followers, but it takes some hard work. Please leave me a comment if you have any questions or topics you would like to know more about and I will reply or blog about it in the future.


The Division will be one of the most popular games on Twitch in 2016

I am going to go out on a limb here and make a bold prediction, I think that The Division will be one of the most popular games on Twitch in 2016.

I love the idea of games like DayZ, Ark and H1Z1 but all three titles have left me disappointed. Now I am left constantly searching for a new title which fills a similar idea and I hope that The Division with the second expansion pack “Survival” will bring some elements of survival to the game. That’s one of the reasons why I pre-purchased The Division before it’s release date with all of the DLC packs included, fingers crossed my hopes will be realised later this year.

So let’s look at the reasons why I think The Division will be one of the most popular games on Twitch in 2016.

1. It’s an MMO, kinda…

Sure, The Division isn’t really listed as being an MMO by Ubisoft but the game is pretty much an MMO. The Division allows for many players to be in the same instance as they explore and fight for survival in New York City. It may be a shooter style based game but it certainly has MMO style elements, even if there’s not hundreds of players in the same instance.

The Dark Zone currently allows up to 24 players in a single instance and players can form clans with each other. Clans or guilds are typical of MMO’s and rumours suggest that they may add official clan support in game, but nothing has been confirmed yet. You can still find people to play with easily and join a Division clan here: http://divisionclans.com/clan/listing

There is a character progression system, a large number of players in a single instance, NPCs to grind in and out of the the Dark Zone, a PvP area, the ability to play as a clan and a large world to explore. Sounds a lot like an MMO to me. All of the above means people will invest many hours into this game.

2. More content is on the way

Ubisoft has already announced some of their expansion plans for The Division. With free updates adding more game content and features and also paid expansion packs coming later in the year. Plus many people have already pre-purchased these expansion packs, myself included. I expect that the new expansions will also allow players to continue to level up their characters allowing players to have a charter more powerful than the current max level of 30. The names of the first three major expansion packs for the game have been revealed along with some very limited details about them:

Expansion I: Underground (June 2016)
In the first major purchasable expansion Ubisoft will be adding a new territory to the game where squads of four players can explore and complete missions in a huge underground network of tunnels under New York City. Players will be going up against brand new NPC characters, grabbing new loot items and continuing the campaign story mode.

Expansion II: Survival (Summer 2016)

I really really hope this expansion will bring some survival elements from games like DayZ and H1Z1 into The Division. Not much information has been released yet. People are speculating all kinds of ideas. The Division website says:

“Available this summer, this expansion will challenge players to survive as long as possible by gathering essential supplies in a very hostile environment.”

Expansion III: Last Stand (Winter 2016)
Again not much is known about this update, people are claiming zombies will be added to the game probably because of the following sentence found in the official trailer:

“A new threat is rising in the third expansion Last Stand. You and your squad must prepare to defend against a relentless foe.”

The game already has that zombie apocalypse feel and the artwork contains a skull as the face of The Statue of Liberty which makes people belive that the iconic statue may appear in a new playable area of the game. It’s many months away and only time will tell.

Smaller free DLC updates
Smaller free DLC updates will be released throughout the games lifespan to enhance the campaign mode and also the PvP Dark Zone area. The next free update will be coming out on the 12th of April which will add new features such as loot trading.

3. It is like Destiny but better

Destiny was one of the most played and viewed games last year on Twitch placing it in the top 10. Destiny is an unrealistic first person shooter set in the future where the last humans fight to protect the dwindling human population; it allows for clans to work together in the campaign mode and go to war in the PvP zones, you level up your character and find rare loot. Sounds a lot like The Division, right?

The Division meanwhile is set in a gritty, realistic world in the aftermath of a devastating plague which has wiped out the majority of New York City. The world is dark and provides a level of realism most shooter fans will recognise however unlike Destiny, The Division is a third person shooter where as Destiny is a first person shooter.

Between the two of them, in my opinion The Division has the stronger PvP area which is organic, evolving and tense. Players are forced to make uncertain alliances with other players to survive against the powerful NPC characters or to counter attacks from other enemy players. This is much like the Battle Royal mode (Now called H1Z1: King of the Kill) found in H1Z1 which was another top 10 game on Twitch last year.

The Division has a lot of potential for streamers; the PvP area will evolve constantly and in my opinion the differences between this and and Destiny will give it a small edge.

4. Its really well made and polished

The Division looks fantastic, there is no doubt about it. The streets of New York City are an almost exact replica of the real city. It’s a dark and gritty world mixed in with the bright lights of Christmas themed decorations which were still left in place after the plague hit the city.

There are plenty of options to look at and experiment with to get a decent level of performance vs perfect graphics for enjoying the environment and it will run on most modern computers; streaming can be CPU intensive so it’s a must for streamers to get good performance when streaming.

Besides the amazing graphics, the game runs smoothly with few bugs and great gameplay flow. The controls for the game work well and the response from the input is extremely fast which is great for those looking to play it ‘seriously’ with their squad. It feels great, it looks great and the game play is fun which leads me on to my next point.

5. The Dark Zone is fun

There’s a lot of features in The Division to try out, utilize and explore with to make you stronger as a solo player in the campaign and provides an edge in the Dark Zone. Players can pick up strong items in the campaign solo world and there are rare items which can be found in the Dark Zone.

Items in the Dark Zone are contaminated and have to be extracted before the player can actually use them; once the item is extracted it’s then safe for the player to die, if they die before the items are extracted then any contaminated items will be dropped. They need to be extracted at extraction zones in the Dark Zone, naturally there could be players there looking to kill other players and steal their loot before they extract it so they can have it for themselves.

The Division uses a proximity voice chat and text chat system which makes the Dark Zone even more tense; players can communicate with each other without needing to accept a friends request for voice chat. It makes the Dark Zone incredibly tense when using a microphone and a lot more entertaining as teams need to sometimes avoid communication altogether or risk being overheard by the enemy.

6. Its on all the major platforms

The Divisions is easy to access. Players can buy versions for the PlayStation 4, Xbox One or for the PC which all have streaming capabilities with or without additional hardware. It does force players to use the Ubisoft game platform Uplay, which is not well loved by gamers but at least it provides achievements and special game-based rewards. Some games are not big on Twitch simply because they are not on all the major platforms so they are unable to complete with games that are.

7. The Division had the biggest first week ever for a new game franchise

That’s right! The Division launch smashed it and not only is it Ubisoft’s best-selling game straight out of the gate but it also had the biggest first week ever for a new game franchise and generated over $330 million globally in its first five days. The game was reported to of have 1.2 million peak concurrent users over the first weekend, and over 100 million hours played in the first week. These kind of numbers begin to give you an idea of how many people enjoyed the beta and wanted to jump straight into the initial release.

The Final Word!

The Division has been in the top 10 games since it was released at the start of March. It’s still highly popular right now for both streamers and viewers; with the upcoming new content which will be released throughout the year, it looks like The Division should stay in the top 10 most watched games for quite some time. People will invest any hours in to the game and I think it will replace similar older titles such as Destiny to become one of the most watched games on Twitch in 2016.

The Division


Twitch Streamers Forum

If you are a Twitch Streamer and you are looking for a Twitch streamers forum then look no further. Head over to TwitchStart.com and join the community there.

If you use Twitter then you probably already know the guys that run this forum. The forum is run by @twitchraid who is one of the biggest Twitter retweet services for Twitch Streamers.

TwitchStart.com - Twitch streamers forum

TwitchStart.com – Twitch streamers forum

I personally hang out and check posts on TwitchStart.com and you can find me there under the username FollowTrainTV.

How many people use the TwitchStart streamers forum?

They just celebrated their 600th member. They have been online around 6 months at the time of writing this article.

Things you can do at TwitchStart.com

Get some feedback about your stream.
Advertise your stream.
Ask Twitch veterans for all kinds of questions.
Discover new software and ideas connected to streaming.
Get hosted and host others.
Just hang out and make friends.

The Final Word!

If you are looking for a Twitch streamers forum then I would start with TwitchStart.com the streamer’s community. Go and create an account today and remember to introduce yourself and complete your profile page.