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How to Get Started With Twitch Charity Streams

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By Hannah Durbin

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Published May 9, 2022 Reading Time: 5 minutes

Twitch streamers raised $83 million for charity in 2020 alone. Averaging 30 million daily active users, the livestreaming platform entertains global audiences through gaming, sports, music, and more. Twitch also expands beyond entertainment as a massive driver of charitable peer-to-peer donations.

Below we break down the role Twitch charity streams can play in your peer-to-peer fundraising efforts, and initial steps to bring this strategy to life at your nonprofit. Discover how to connect with streamers to draw more eyes to your cause, and explore key stats that reinforce the value Twitch can bring to your organizational goals.

What Is Twitch?

Twitch began in 2011 as a place for people to come together live every day to connect and make their own entertainment. The platform is predominantly used by video gamers, but non-gamers have also turned to Twitch for other forms of creative content, like esports or cocktail classes.

Twitch charity stream
In support of Children’s Miracle Network, Twitch creator @final_quest hosted a charity stream to raise money and awareness for the nonprofit’s worthy cause.

Users can tune in from the official Twitch website, the app for mobile devices, or their gaming consoles. Each user has the option to set up a livestream of their own as well, which would classify them as a streamer or content creator.

Streams feature a chatroom where users and creators can interact with each other, plus the option to join a Discord to continue the conversation after the livestream ends.

Twitch continues to grow every year. Here are a few key stats to demonstrate the platform’s trajectory:

  • 140 million monthly active users
  • 9.2 million active streamers every month
  • 71 million hours of content viewed daily

How to Do a Charity Stream on Twitch

Before we get too far, let’s explore how Twitch charity streams work and what your nonprofit needs to know to make the most of this fundraising opportunity.

Charitable donations must be made through a third-party giving platform

There is currently no Twitch product that allows for in-platform charitable donations. When viewers choose to support a nonprofit, they are required to give money directly through a charitable fundraising platform or through a charity’s own fundraising system. This process ensures that all donations go directly to the charity and donors receive tax deductible receipts for their contributions.

To simplify the process, nonprofits can integrate a fundraising extension on Twitch to enable donations to be made directly to the organization without ever having to leave the broadcast. An alternative solution is sharing the link to a nonprofit campaign before, during, and after the broadcast to drive donors to the designated landing page.

Direct donations to a streamer are not charitable donations 

Content creators on Twitch can make money through:

  • Subscriptions: Viewers can opt into monthly subscriptions of varying levels to show support for their favorite creators
  • Bits: Twitch introduced Bits Cheering as a currency to donate to creators to celebrate their content
  • Direct Donations: Creators can link to a third-party payment processor, like PayPal, to collect personal donations during broadcasts

These donations should not be confused with charitable donations. It’s also important to note that giving money to a creator through Bits or Subscriptions that they will later donate to charity is not considered a charitable donation and is not tax deductible.

Streamers are highly encouraged to give back and get involved with nonprofits 

Once streamers build a tight-knit community, Twitch motivates them to use their platform for social good. In fact, Twitch’s Creator Camp has an entire category dedicated to charity fundraising to remind streamers just how important it is to make a positive difference.

The best way for these individuals to raise money for charity is by encouraging users to contribute directly to a nonprofit to avoid getting stuck as the middle-person. This helps reduce the risk of potentially burdensome legal requirements and restrictions, and simplifies the process for everyone involved.

5 Tips to Connect With Streamers on Twitch

The Twitch community is passionate about supporting causes they care about. In fact, 78% of Twitch users want to see more charity in gaming.

The most effective way to fuel greater peer-to-peer fundraising potential, strengthen community ties, and dramatically expand your reach on Twitch is to partner with influential creators who proudly stand behind your mission.

To identify, engage, and nurture lasting relationships with the right creators, consider these five tips.

1. Don’t limit yourself to gaming

Twitch is the go-to platform for livestream gaming, but that’s just one of many types of entertainment available to users. Consider partnering with creators of all types to find the right fit for your unique audience.

Whether that’s a cooking creator, musician, sports fanatic, or professional gamer, just make sure that you’ve considered your supporter base and catered the charity stream to align with their interests.

2. Establish a connection before reaching out 

If you’re interested in partnering with a particular individual, consistently show support for their work to start building a relationship. With each organic interaction, you will begin to develop a mutual sense of trust and familiarity.

3. Start a conversation to gauge interest 

From there, initiate outreach via email to avoid getting overlooked or lost in their sea of direct messages. Personalize your message with words of admiration or support, then lead into your partnership offering with a direct tie to the impact of your mission.

Be specific about why you think they would be the best fit for your organization, and clearly state what you have in mind for the collaboration. Better yet, have these conversations in person at a Twitch convention to make a lasting impression.

4. Offer charity stream incentives 

Like all influencers, Twitch creators are always seeking opportunities to grow their brand. In addition to supporting a worthy cause, offer a few incentives that might pique their interest. These could include features on social media, a promotion in your weekly newsletter, custom swag, free tickets to your next event, or a simple shoutout on your organization’s website.

5. Provide creators with the tools they need to succeed 

Preparation is key to a successful Twitch charity stream. To engage and secure the right creators, provide them with the tools and resources they’ll need to confidently represent your brand and compel donors to take action. These resources might include:

  • Talking points to cover off on during the broadcast
  • Links to all relevant campaign materials to share with viewers (e.g., campaign landing page, donation page, etc.)
  • FAQs to reference in response to viewer questions
  • Branded photos and videos to share with users
  • Social media templates to promote the event

Use Twitch Charity Streams to Fuel Your Fundraising

Globally, gaming is projected to have a compound annual growth revenue of 10.5% between 2021 and 2026. It’s also worth noting that the number of Twitch broadcasters has risen more than 10x since 2012, from 30,000 unique broadcasters each month in 2012 to nearly 4 million unique broadcasters each month in 2020.

Livestreaming is on the rise and now is the perfect time to capitalize on its growth to move the needle on your mission. Take advantage of the organic peer-to-peer opportunities on Twitch to build lasting relationships with passionate supporters, tap into donors’ generosity through meaningful interactions, and nurture a community that will stand behind your mission for years to come.

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