There has been some talk recently on social media about everyone getting a subscribe button and how a more equal playing field would be so much better for us as streamers. I can see how enticing that is and I can understand both sides of this coin. First and foremost I want to ask what does having a subscribe button mean to you? Money? Fame? Respect? Stream Teams? Access to NDA stuff? Secret Clubs?
I blogged last year about how most any partnership is so much more than a button and it’s a responsibility and something that should not be taken ligthly. But as I said earlier I can see both sides of the coin. As nice as it would be nice to not have to compete with all the other streamers who constantly have high viewer counts; it is worth losing the respect?
I’ve spent a lot of time researching this topic and financial support can be achieved through other methods; for example Gamewisp. Gamewisp is in a lot of ways even better than a traditional partnership with a streaming platform in the sense that you can manipulate it to be exactly what you need. When I asked my community why they would want partnership most everyone said so I can be a full time streamer/caster. This is a nice way of saying they want to be paid enough to support themselves and/or their families.
So if financial success is the main reason why you want to be partnered, then Gamewisp is by far a better option. Typically partnership on Beam or Twitch only gives you 50% of each sub minus paypal fees; Gamewisp takes a flat amount and then credit card fees. Here is an example. A Beam sub is $5.99 so you would receive a little under half of that, if you chose to have a $5.99 sub on Gamewisp (at level 1) they would take $1 plus about $0.45 in credit card feed leaving you with $4.55 which is about DOUBLE the amount Beam would give you.
Let’s say it’s not about the money and it’s about giving back to your dedicated community; I can understand this as well as I am the same way. Gamewisp is still your best option as you can offer products to mail out or items to give away for your viewers supporting you. On my Gamewisp account I had a tier where I would make cookies and mail them out to you, send you all my favorite recipes, and even have early access to my blog before anyone else! You can safely give so much back to your communities through these 3rd party sites.
I can understand how a subscribe button can help a small, steady, and dedicated community. I was this back on Twitch and my early days on Beam. My community supported me no matter what the cause was. We were a super tight knit family. I know of a few communities right now who are the exact same way. While a small community may not be able to support a streamer “full time” through a subscribe button they can still tip the streamer which in the end helps the streamer out more. Depending on the company the fees would be different obviously but it’s going to be better than the 50% plus fees that we talked about earlier.
Let’s flip the coin and talk about why a streaming platform shouldn’t just hand out subscribe buttons to everyone. I’m reminded of a quote from the Incredibles that says “When everyone is super then no will be.” Right now look at partners on Beam or Twitch; they typically have a very professional stream setup, lots of extras going on (stream team, blogs, Minecraft groups, etc) and typically are willing to go the extra mile to help others with their streams. When you join a new streaming platform like Beam I can almost guarantee that one of your first streams you watched was a partner. It’s really the easiest way to get to know a site by seeing how the partners represent the company they love and stream for. They are the people to go to ask for advice on nearly anything about the platform, questions about anything related to streaming, gaming, technology, etc.. Obviously, some will be more knowledgeable than others and each partner has a niche in their knowledge but when and if you need help the partners are the ones who can (and should) help.
If everyone has a button given to them and is partnered, then who would new people go to see how the site works and functions? No one would stand out as being the knowledgeable ones or the helpful ones. You would probably gravitate towards the streamers with the highest viewers and that doesn’t mean they are knowledgeable about the site or in even partnered. Let’s imagine if you worked the last 2-4 years on building your brand (because that is the average time it takes to get partnered if you work hard) you finally got the coveted partnership and a few months later they give it out to everyone. How would you feel? Cheated? Slapped in the face? Disrespected? Could you ever trust that platform again? Would you still stream there?
Me personally, I wouldn’t stream on the same platform if they gave subscribe buttons to everyone. It’s just not the same. As badly as I wanted that subscribe button, mainly to develop a unique and supportive stream team, I feel giving it to everyone would be a big mistake. By working hard, building your brand, networking, and growing your community you will eventually get that magical button. I’ve proven that I have what it takes to represent my platform. I’m proud to be a partner, and others can see that I’m worth it too.
Until next time…