Getting To Grips With Facebook Gaming
Glenn Alexander 2020-07-22
With the recent news [shocking news] of Microsoft shutting down Mixer, this meant that Mixer streamers would need to find a new place to share their content. Many streamers will simply fall back to streaming to Twitch while others might try YouTube Gaming and then there is the new kid on the block, Facebook Gaming.
I was a long-time streamer on Mixer and it is a daunting task to start all over from scratch to build up your followers, get your regular viewers and basically start streaming on a brand new stage and platform to attract viewers all over again. I’ve taken the decision to move from Mixer over to Facebook Gaming. In the past 3 weeks I have come across some great tips on how to get you up and running and making the most out of Facebook Gaming as a streaming platform and why I think you should too.
These tips have helped me so far and I thought I'd share it with some of you who might be in a similar position or want to try streaming for the very first time. So why not give Facebook Gaming a chance?
Facebook Gaming is by far the best opportunity to build a following from streaming video games, because Facebook Gaming is relatively new in the game compared to Twitch or YouTube. That means there is a very good ratio right now of viewers to creators, especially established creators that are doing a very good job, which means huge opportunity.
Follow 4 Follow
Follow 4 Follow (F4F) is exactly what it sounds like: saying that you will follow anyone who follows you for the sole purpose of increasing the number of followers you have in an attempt to appear more popular. Please don’t even bother with this as it does not seem to do anything to viewer count in livestreams. F4F is an empty promise and does zero for your page and stream.
I’ve noticed, when it comes to Facebook Gaming, live streaming is the best time to get new followers. Rather build your community the good “old fashioned” way. More streaming equals more followers. It is that simple.
it will come as no surprise that you will need a good internet connection to stream, but nothing out of the ordinary. When game-streaming you will need to have a good upload connection, anything 3Mbps+ will suffice. This is not to be confused with streaming services like YouTube or Netflix where the download speed is more important. To be on the safe side I would suggest starting with at least 10Mbps upload speed. Some ISPs might be better than others in terms of quality and stability when it comes to steaming.
Oh and definitely make sure to use a wired connection from your gaming rig to your router. With these long streaming sessions of over an hour, you are bound to hit some hiccups and dropouts which are common on the everyday wireless routers.
I am personally with Web Africa and have a 300mbps down and 100mbps up fibre line on the Vumatel network. I have not had a single issue since I signed up with them in December 2019.
There is a noticeable increase in streaming performance. Facebook Gaming has built-in tools for Stream Health and it shows audio bit rate, video bitrate and frame rate. I am very pleased with the performance and received a lot of compliments around my stream quality.
If you are trying to build followers on a bunch of other places, for example: if you’re live streaming one day on Facebook, the next day on Twitch, the next day on YouTube, it can be really tough to get everyone in one place. Focus exclusively on Facebook and rather direct followers from the other platforms to your Facebook page.
Be sure you stream for more than one hour at a time. Facebook Gaming doesn't spread all your notifications in one go and if you have a shorter stream you are missing out on pushing out more notifications. The longer, the better.
Improve your organic reach. Experiment with your streams, by this I mean try to test out different stream time slots. When is it the best time for you to stream to capture the widest audience? Maybe off-peak times might be better than you think? Play around with different starting times, especially over weekends. Experiment and see what works best for you.
Create a schedule and stick to it. Once you figure out your best streaming times, stick to it. Even if you don't feel up to streaming that day, do it anyway. It could be the day you gain 20 new followers or receive that once-off $500.00 donation or tip. Be transparent with your viewers letting them know how you are feeling, and they will understand. But don’t cancel your stream if you cannot help it.
Thumbnail, Stream Title & Description
Many streamers overlook this. To be catchy on the eye, especially if people are simply browsing content and streamers for someone interesting to watch, you need to make sure you’re going to get noticed. Make sure you have the best looking thumbnail (something that stands out) and a good stream title and description. You need to draw viewers in by making them want to click on your stream.
Engagement is the key to getting organic reach on Facebook. So now that you have a few viewers watching your stream, engage with them so they in turn will engage with your stream. You’re looking for their comments, reactions, and most importantly their shares.
1 Minute Views Matter
A lot of streamers tend to not pay attention to this, but I think it is important. Your “1 minute views” matter. According to Facebook, 1 minute views (check your creator studio analytics) are what affects your organic reach the most. Having too many 1 minute views, as opposed to more spread-out or longer views can negatively affect your future reach.
One of the tricks to boost your reach is to find ways to get people to watch longer. The first 3 seconds has been proven to be the most important to hook potential viewers - so don’t waste those with intro’s get straight into it. Be creative in your stream, ask questions, post polls, show a 45 second highlight clip of a previous game or match play during your live stream. Get creative! It’s your stream, own it.
Learn From The Pros
Since I am new to Facebook Gaming, I’ve found myself watching a lot of the “bigger” Facebook Gaming streamers. I am “stealing” with my eyes: watching their streams, looking how they are doing it. You might even pick up what they are doing to keep viewers engaged, or something might spark off an idea for your own stream, or you may even pick up on trends. Consume as many streams as possible, not only to watch, but also to learn.
Content Content Content
Starting out from scratch is tough, make no mistake. Play some of the more
at first that are currently gaining a lot of viewers. When it comes to less popular games, you
just genuinely get less viewers because the games are not popular enough,
so in turn that might then take longer for you to grow your own
Note that Facebook Gaming does really well at splitting your audience based on the game you are playing. So be aware that if you, for example, stream on multiple days during the week, especially if you’re a variety streamer like me, maybe your audience might not watch everything you stream.
I'm no expert, but the above tips are from what I've learnt these past 3 weeks. I know it might seem like a GRIND, but I’d hate to think you have to stick with 0% growth when you can do something to change that. Test and try different things if you want to grow (one step at a time).
It's also very important [and this should go without saying] to enjoy the game you stream! If you don't enjoy it, then the viewers won't. It is that simple. Basic streaming 101 right here!
Mindset (We all started at zero)
Don’t get trapped in the “I am a small streamer” mindset. Don’t worry about what the big streamers are doing. They started at a different time than you, and they started at zero followers too. Focus on your stream and content and the magic will happen.
Time & Patience
It takes time to grow your channel. The more time you put in, the more you will be rewarded. If streaming was that easy, everyone would have thousands of subscribers, followers and viewers. Take it one stream at a time.
This is something I learnt right at the start when I began to stream. Go back and WATCH your own streams. Make notes, pick up mistakes, but most importantly consume your own stream from your viewers vantage. Try improving on one thing with every new stream. Maybe this week focus on your titles and descriptions. Then the next week work on your thumbnails. And after that work on your schedule. But keep on working on your stream to improve it for yourself and your viewers.
Hopefully these tips will help you out and get your stream going in the right direction. Feel free to add any of your own tips in the comments below as I look forward to hearing from all of you.
Gossip: Where Is Ninja Now ?
As some of you might know, Ninja (Tyler) is probably the best paid gaming-streamer of all time. When he “moved” to Mixer away from Twitch he got paid a reported sum between $20 million and $30 million.
He has made no official statement about his new streaming home, but he has been more active than usual on his YouTube channel.
Where to find me (Glenn Alexander):
Facebook - http://fb.gg/glennzamvp
Instagram - http://www.instagram.com/glennzamvp