Self branding can be something people struggle with when first starting out as a streamer. Why? Because they don’t know where to begin! Do they want to be a Just Chatting streamer, a game streamer, Mature or Family Friendly Streamer. There are so many directions that one can take in this that it can be overwhelming when trying to figure out who YOU want to be! Hell, Myself it took a while to really begin to start to establish who I wanted to be. When I first started streaming it was directly off my PS4 and I just started playing. I didn’t know or think there was any type of direction that I wanted to go until I was graduating to streaming from my PS4 via capture card and then continuing all the way to PC.
Having a direction when streaming can help you in feeling a bit more relaxed (In my opinion!). Knowing where you want to go and what you want to do is something that can help in growth. When I first started streaming I wanted to be a gaming streamer. I wanted to eventually have a web cam and then I wanted to grow no games. At this point I knew very little about just chatting streams but now as I am learning more and more about streaming I slowly want to introduce myself to bringing more of the laid back style of just chatting instead of the fast paced FPS games or what not. I wanted to be friendly and welcoming to new people but like I am in real life I wanted to make sure that I didn’t take crap from anyone and was treated nice. I don’t put up with stuff in the real world like bullies and what not I wasn’t going to do it in the virtual one either. That also being said, I knew I didn’t want to be someone who showed a lot of cleavage on stream either. Not that there is anything wrong with that but a) I lack confidence to show that much skin on stream let alone to anyone and b) I was in a committed relationship and I couldn’t bring myself to do that because I felt like I was betraying my boyfriend who i was in a very committed relationship with. It was just not the image that I wanted to have for who I am or becoming as a streamer.
Having a family friendly stream vs a mature audience stream can be tricky to navigate. For me, I wanted to have a mature audience. I swear WAY too much and knew that when I was gaming I did not want to be babysitting anyone. Mind you now that I have my son I will eventually have to be more careful with swearing (Unless I switch my schedule now to an evening one when the little fella sleeps a lot better!) but overall I do not want to be a family friendly stream. I know there are streamers who do run a family friendly stream and I respect that. They want to have a safe space and want to welcome people from all different ages. For me, I want to watch streams who are mature. With a kid especially I feel like I will see more than enough kids programs that I will need an escape with actual adults. That being said if someone comes into my chat (Which Yes, I do have the mature audience filter on too!) and they say that they are under 18 I simply say we don’t talk about ages in my channel and move on.
Stick with it! As hard as it might be. Whatever you want to do for self branding stick with it and test it out for a while. Establishing who you are and what you want to represent will take time and energy as well as dedication as well too. Rome wasn’t built in a day you know! Sure, For my situation I could have easily went and shown a bit of skin and maybe I would have had it a bit better on growth or whatever else but I didn’t want to do that and stayed true to myself. If it doesn’t work then cross that bridge when you get to it!
What if you want a change? Is there a right way or a wrong way to do this? This was something that really stuck out to me from AshniChrist’s youtube video. If you want to change change slow enough that your viewers do not notice and fast enough that they stay interested. If you do this too slowly you may lose viewers because they don’t want to stick around waiting and waiting. And if you want to do it slow enough that it is not a major change. If you consider yourself a family friendly stream which primarily plays FPS games and suddenly you switch to a MOBA and are mature content, that is quite the change between! You may lose people who were once dedicated along the way because you have done a legit 180 for content.
Lastly, BE CONSISTENT! If you are one way on your stream, say Family Friendly, but on Twitter you are 18+ and on instagram you are pg-13 then you will find you will get a bunch of people in the wrong places at the wrong times due to all the mixed messages you are sending. If you are going to be family friendly, do that across all of your social medias. And if you choose to have different sides of your brand then separate them. There is a streamer who mains Dead by Daylight who is family friendly. He welcomes anyone and everyone and is super wholesome. It would be a bit whacked though if you were to click on his twitter link to see a bunch of nearly nudes or F-bombs around in tweets.
Whatever you want to do or decide to do, There is no right or wrong way to brand who YOU are! As long as you aren’t being fake I think anything goes in my eyes!