Can Streaming Pay? Musicians Are Pinning Contemporary Hopes on Twitch.
BE SUCCESSFUL However, live music streamer is hard work.
Travis and Allie of Aeseaes (pronounced “ACS”, an abbreviation of their channel name: a_couple_streams) left their office jobs five years ago to focus on Twitch. Unlike many who use it for a behind-the-scenes look at their creative process, Travis and Allie offer the equivalent of an intimate stage show with mood lighting and a special camera for one of their cuddly cats; the only chatter is her profuse thanks to the contributors.
Aeseaes gets over 5,000 viewers on every show, with nearly 1,000 hits at any point in time, and their channel has held well over 1,000 paying subscribers every month for the past two years, according to a data report the couple shared with The New York Times. This success enables Travis and Allie to devote themselves entirely to making music at home.
But to keep their business going and maintain engagement, they need to post content regularly and get online for about three hours each three times a week. “We knew from the start that streaming on Twitch was kind of an endurance run,” Allie said.
Page compares keeping a Twitch account to running a taxi: it only makes money when the meter is running. And long trips are the most lucrative.
The huge Twitch audience means streamers must seize every opportunity to get greater reach. This month, Danielle Allard, a 31-year-old musician and professor from Ottawa, Ontario who began experimenting with live streaming a year ago, learned that a scheduled 6 o’clock set would be on the Twitch home page – the prime time equivalent TV advertising.
Allard woke up at 4, prepared her gear, made tea, and went online – for almost seven hours, playing originals, cranberries and Chris Isaak covers and a few whining kazoo solos. In the end she was tearful and almost delirious with joy. Her stream, which usually has a few hundred viewers at a time, brought in 408 new subscribers and 1,659 followers, sending them over the 10,000 mark. (Top gaming accounts have well over five million followers.)