When you think of streaming platforms for gamers, you generally think of either Twitch or Youtube, right? Twitch is great, and if you want to focus on it, you should read my awesome post on how to be a Twitch Affiliate in 30 days!
But there are alternatives to Twitch for those who think it’s over-rated or over saturated. I dug deep to find the best alternatives to Twitch for both monetizing (because duh, side hustle!) and for those who just want to build a genuine community.
Streaming Platforms – Great Alternatives to Twitch
Trying to Monetize
Smashcast.tv is probably the biggest alternative to Twitch out there. It’s the result of a merger between two smaller streaming platforms, Hitbox and Azubu. Their original intent was to focus on E-Sports, and although they have branched out and support all types of games, they have done a great job of supporting E-Sports.
There are two ways for you to earn money streaming with Smashcast. The first is through their general partnership program, and the second is through their premium partnership program.
Smashcast’s general partnership program is extremely easy to sign up for and use. Any content creator can sign up for it. Any user can subscribe to you, and there are no streaming commitments or exclusivity requirements. You can make money from gaining subscribers and from running ads on your stream. With the general partnership account, you are limited to running 6 ads per hour on any given stream.
You can make more money with the premium partnership, but there are limitations to it. In order to qualify for premium partnership, you need to have over 100 concurrent viewers, and must stream at least three days per week. You also must sign an exclusivity contract with Smashcast, so you wouldn’t be able to monetize any other streaming platforms. A benefit is that you can run up to 60 ads per hour (though I don’t know why you’d want to run that many!) so you can probably make more money as a premium partner than with the general partnership.
I think it’s great that Smashcast allows every broadcaster the opportunity to start making money right away. The platform isn’t as popular as Twitch is (yet) so although you may get less viewers, there’s probably less competition. I’m not a an of signing an exclusivity agreement, but if you are doing well on the platform it might not be a bad decision. It does seem like it’s more difficult to gain a steady following on Smashcast, so the general partnership program may just be a way to entice newbies to the platform. I can’t comment on how profitable it is, but I’d imagine it’s like most things – you get out what you put in.
Mixer is another streaming platform that is very similar to Twitch. It’s much harder to get to partnership status on mixer. You need over 2000 followers and must have at least 12 streams per month with over 25 hours of streaming. I couldn’t find any lower level affiliate program that would give you a sort of stepping stone to partnership like the other two platforms have. You make money with mixer in the same way that you make money with other streaming platforms: through subscriptions and ads.
It will take a lot of work to even begin making money with Mixer due to the high follower requirements. However, I didn’t see anything about an exclusivity program, so you could potentially use both mixer and another platform to make money streaming – if you have the time. I think it’s worth a shot if you are looking for a less competitive alternative to Twitch.
It’s All About the Game:
Instagib seems like a fun platform with all the ease of use of the ones above. However, I can’t find any information anywhere on how to monetize your Instagib account. If you are looking for a gaming community that isn’t about the money, Instagib might be right for you. But let’s face it, you’re reading a finance blog. We are looking for ways to make extra money! I couldn’t find a way to do that with Instagib.
Although I couldn’t find a way to monetize your GosuGamer account through ads and subscribers like the other platforms, you can make money on it by winning tournaments. Gosugamer is the best platform for E-sports. It runs a variety of tournaments and challenges that you can make real money by winning. The downside is that you have to be really good at the game in order to make any money off of it. But if you are super into E-sports (and great at them!) it’s a platform that’s worth checking out.
Gaming Platforms to Skip
I put Afreeca in the skip column because most of my readers are from the US. The majority of streamers featured in Afreeca are in Asia. However, if you are in Asia, or speak an Asian language, it might be worth a second look.
Bigo live markets itself as a live streaming platform for anyone, but unfortunately, it’s over-run with mostly cam girls. It does have a gaming element, but most of the featured gamers are – you guessed it – cam girls gaming. At least that’s the impression I got from their thumbnails. Hard pass.
Other alternatives to Twitch?
Does anyone know of any other streaming platform that’s a great alternative to Twitch? I’d love to check them out! My boyfriend and I are totally going to turn streaming into a valid side hustle some day!