Despite being a platform primarily designed to host chats and video calls, Discord can be an avenue for you to effectively grow your brand further.
The key is: you need to know everything it can possibly offer to figure out a way to use the platform to your advantage.
From hosting a private server to networking with other influencers, there’s so much more to do on Discord other than just keeping in touch with your community.
Before Discord, an app called Openfeint was developed and released by Jason Citron on November 25, 2010. The app was designed for mobile gaming communication but Citron sold it to GREE and used the money to start other projects with Hammer & Chisel.
Discord was eventually released on May 13, 2015 by Hammer & Chisel Inc. The platform offered a user-friendly, modern, and liberated way of communication.
Since then, the Discord app consistently updated their software with much more content than other applications such as improving the capacity of channels, servers, chat rooms, video sharing, browser, social media access, bots, and many more.
These updates paved the way for Discord to broaden their target audience from gaming to even streaming, education, discussion groups, fan groups and online influencers.
Discord as an indispensable tool
Discord has long since been acknowledged as an indispensable online avenue for content creators to connect with their fanbase.
Though it was designed to help gamers communicate with each other, the platform outgrew its original intention and turned into a default go-to place for various influencers on YouTube, Reddit, and Instagram.
In short, Discord welcomes any creator with an audience to easily connect with their community online.
So is venturing into Discord worth your time and effort? Absolutely. There are a lot of reasons why the platform is a great tool to use if you’re aiming to grow your brand and streamer identity.
For one, the app offers a wide range of availability. You can choose to access it through your mobile phone or on your desktop browser, and the app can be downloadable for both PC and Mac.
If you’re a famous streamer with a huge following, Discord will also make it easier for you to handle your online community. You can have your followers join your own server and create a variety of channels for all uses you deem fit.
In that way, popular servers aren’t secluded in one message thread which most would probably just skip and scroll over. You can even have multiple channels for the different games you play on your server.
The enabled voice chats on Discord also lets you adjust the audio level of anyone in the group you are talking to. Say, if your friend’s microphone makes it difficult for you to decipher what they’re saying– you can boost their mic volume.
The platfrm also offers low latency voice chats, taking your whole voice chatting experience to a higher level of communication.
The Role of Servers
To get the most out of Discord, users join different servers after signing up. These servers act as its own community, and it’s easy to toggle from one server to another.
Servers can have public and private channels and administrators can opt to designate various roles to each member. The roles are equipped with custom colors, privileges, and name tags.
Aside from group chats, Discord also allows global private messaging even if your friends are from different servers. To join a server, you will need a custom invite link. This is done to ensure chats aren’t infiltrated with spammers or troll-y outsiders.
Discord’s real-time chat feature also makes it more ideal than a comment section, where you may not get a reply for hours.
8 Tips for a Successful Discord Brand Identity
Here are some helpful tips to help you establish a successful gaming streamer brand identity on Discord:
Create your own server
Gather your fans and form an online community on Discord. As an aspiring streamer, you can use the platform to connect with your audience even when you’re off your usual streaming hours. Being friends with your community is one great way to prove to them that you deserve the support they give.
Keep in touch with your community
Creating a server alone is not enough. You also need to do your part in befriending and forming a connection with your online community. Keep in mind: it doesn’t hurt to be friendly, although it’s only natural to maintain boundaries of course. You will need your audience to respect your privacy once you’ve started to grow your brand.
Moderators can make life on Discord easier for you! As a way to show you their support and appreciation, they can have admin-like powers to filter irrelevant content, kick members who are caught violating server rules and guidelines, and more. Moderators can keep your server up and running even during your absence.
Promote your server on social media
The key to having people join your server is to let them know. You don’t have to necessarily hand out exclusive access links, informing them that your server exists is enough. Interested fans can then try to reach you regarding information on how they can access the said Discord server.
Join advertising servers
On Discord, there are servers designed to advertise yours. Joining these communities can help you grow your own and reach interested or like-minded users. These servers also provide tips and resources on how you can develop your reach further on the platform. You learn what you need to know and at the same time, grow your community. It’s a win-win situation!
Be consistent and creative
Don’t entirely ghost your Discord community! It’s one thing to establish a friendly and easy-to-approach nature among the members of your server, but you also have to be active in posting relevant announcements, and maybe even host a giveaway or events. Whip up some fun activities that everyone can partake in. Game challenges, anyone?
Establish a proper branding
You have to look professional despite being open and approachable to your audience. One good way to do this is to ensure you have an attractive server logo that can create good first impressions. The logo must represent you and what you have to offer. Owning a server gives you myriad opportunities in establishing your online identity and branding.
Choose a short, relevant server title
Keep your server name short and relevant! If you abide by a distinct username in your other primary platforms, you can opt to name your server with the same branding. Server titles primarily attract potential members and will reflect the aim and focus of your community, so better choose wisely.
Things to avoid
If we’re giving out tips to help you manage your Discord servers efficiently, here are the things you might want to avoid:
Avoid posting your link on random servers
You wouldn’t want random people to just hop in your server especially if they’re not interested or even not aware of your existence. If random people can easily enter your server, the possibilities are they will just leave again or “troll” around.
Avoid giving out rewards to entice people in joining
In case you missed it, unsolicited advertising is simply against the “Terms of Service” of Discord. Avoid doing so if you want to be on the platform’s good side.
Avoid starting a server without setting rules and regulations
This is done to maintain order in your online community. Make sure that the rules and regulation is easily noticed and understandable by new members.
Avoid too many or too few mods
Make sure that your staff and mods are just appropriate to the number of members in your server. If you have a huge following on Discord, consider adding some new mods to help out. Some servers are neglected and not properly managed by its mods- and you wouldn’t want the same thing to happen to yours.
Famous influencers on Discord: A closer look
From Fortnite pro to rapper-superstar Drake, some of the most popular live streamers are on Discord. YouTubers Philip DeFranco, Buzzfeed’s The Try Guys, and Grace Helbig have their own exclusive servers where fans can connect with each other in real-time.
YouTuber Sara Dietschy, with over 609k subscribers, also set up a Discord server after big stars started offering them. In an interview with The Atlantic, she says:
“It’s basically a free and easy way to have a Slack with your community… Slack is for you to be productive at work. Discord is pretty much the opposite.”
Thanks to Discord, staying connected with your community is now made easier.
Another YouTuber, Carson King, also expressed his appreciation towards the platform for allowing him to effectively communicate with his fans:
“Discord is the only place where I can hang out with friends and really feel like I’m hanging out with them.”
A private Discord server is much more favored by many content creators because other social media platforms have their fair share of disadvantages.
Twitter, for one, can be rather messy and public. Threads can be interrupted and broken up by outsiders. On Instagram, DMs can be difficult to manage and are unsearchable. Public comment threads can also get buried.
YouTube’s comment sections can be overrun by trolls and are rather disorganized. And Reddit, given everyone’s anonymity, is generally toxic.
Discord serves as the safe place for everyone to meet like-minded people around the world who are into the same things they love.
Big-time streamers and their servers
Perhaps it’s time to take a page off famous streamers’ and establish your own server on Discord! Big gaming personalities usually advertise their servers on their channel (About/ Info page) or on Twitter.
Some have chosen to set up their Discord servers as a ‘sub only’ one. If you are a sub and you want to access the servers, all you need to do is to go into Discord’s setting and under ‘connections’ there will be an option to link your Twitch account.
A list of servers belonging to the people you have subbed to will show up (given they have one) and you can join them there.
Here’s a list of gamers, streaming personalities and their Discord servers:
- Pewdie & Cutie – Considered as the largest Pewdiepie Discord server with over 21,000+ members and counting, Pewdiepie and Cutie offers content such as a variety of game discussions, announcements, memes, and more. There are also a couple of other Pewdiepie fan-made servers on the Discord community which you can join to interact with fellow 9 year olds from across the globe.
- Neekolul – Twitch streamer turned TikTok sensation Neekolul’s Discord server is one of the recently-made servers, but it is already gathering a lot of members and is even actively mentioned across the internet. The server is also known to tolerate simps when she said on Twitter “wholesome simping only pls” and “simps are welcome.”
- Poki Squad – Poki Squad is the official Discord fan server of the famous Twitch streamer, gamer girl Pokimane. This server has currently 82,732 members and this is where Poki fans gather to discuss, support, and interact with her and also with one another. If you are one of the Pokimane fans out there, then you definitely need to join the Poki Squad.
- Mr Beast Official – This is MrBeast’s new Discord server, where fans of the YouTuber actively engage in. The YouTube star is famous for his videos involving big amounts of money such as having silly ways to spend it, giving away grand presents, and a lot more. This server is where discussion (about his recent videos) among fans may take place.
- CallMeCarson Discord Cult – Despite being a non-gaming channel, CallMeCarson’s Discord cult is one of the most active and popular servers with about 250,000 members. The community actively posts content consisting of dank memes, streams, and more funny stuff.
- xQc’s Jungle – Twitch streamer and internet personality xQc has been actively engaging with his community on Discord as early as 2017. As of writing, his server has over 99.2k members and counting.
Bots to use?
Discord bots make the entire experience unique compared to other calling and streaming sites. Particularly, it offers more features and is considerably more efficient to use. They can enhance the functionalities of your server without the hassle on your end.
Bots in the platform help server owners and administrators with moderation tools which can be easy to integrate with outside apps like YouTube or Twitch. You can manage your server better and add fun features in tow at the same time.
Here are some of the gaming-related bots you can make use of, as a game streamer or influencer:
- Tatsumaki – Many online game streamers swear by this reliable Discord bot. Tatsumaki gives you tons of commands for moderating your server, setting welcome notifications, personal messages, among other features. The bot also allows you to search the web and stay updated through an RSS feed just within Discord.
- Aethex – Aethex can be an adaptable and a multi-purpose Discord bot that offers comprehensive moderation for your servers. It has a music command that lets you and your group listen to music, depending on your pick of the day, which also has an auto-queue feature. The bot also has utility commands and many fun commands for you to explore!
- GAwesome – This multi-purpose bot is a great choice to add to your Discord server. It is highly customizable and powerful, which helps in moderating the chats in your server. It also brings different fun features to encourage user activity and engagement. For instance, it can ban, kick, or award member ranks, conduct giveaways or polls, generate memes, and more.
- Mee6 – The Mee6 bot lets your community gain XP and levels by merely participating in the chat. It gives you Twitch and Reddit notifications, lets you manage custom commands, and allows you to browse your favorite anime and manga without leaving the app. The bot also helps in keeping a log of all the messages in your server.
- Dank Memer – As the name suggests, this bot is designed for meme enthusiasts! Through this bot, you can generate dank memes within seconds, manipulate funny images, and even set specialized meme commands. Generate more than 100 kinds of memes in real time by using prefix commands all while managing your server.
- Mudae – Here’s a bot for anime fans and otakus! Mudae is a bot filled with anime and various gaming characters. You can choose to customize your profile and even fight against such 2D or 3D characters. It has more than 35,000 characters of your favorite manga husbando, waifus, and more.
No need for a huge following
Discord is the one place where you don’t need to reach hundreds or thousands to be heard, unlike on Facebook or Twitter where you need a massive follower count to spark engagement.
Even with a dozen people joining your own server, you can hang out with them and interact with them in any way you desire — whether it’s voice, chat, or pictures.
Considered as one of the most defining appeals of the platform, Discord encourages you to hang out with friends in a lowkey, relaxed way.
Not only does it benefit influencers or established content creators, but also fans who enjoy their content (even if they’re not really into gaming).
Not a feed, but a chat
Thanks to Discord’s chat-like features, it’s free of the algorithms that most influencers often complain about.
For instance, if a creator wants to announce they have a new video upload or promote the sale of a merch, they can easily post a message which everyone can see in the #announcements tab of their Discord server.
This way, not only can they start an open, more intimate dialogue with their community, but they are also safe from any algorithmic penalties that may negatively impact one’s content.
Undoubtedly a game changer, Discord serves as a channel for fans across the globe to feel engaged and empowered.
Moderators to the rescue!
As a growing content creator, you don’t have to supervise every aspect of your server 24/7. There are days you may have to stream for long hours or attend to real-life responsibilities, after all.
So how do you ensure your server keeps going despite your short absence? Thanks to moderators, you can be confident that your community is maintained well.
Moderators can delete irrelevant posts, which may be spam or troll messages, and basically just monitor the server’s activity in general. Fans can still bond with each other and establish a connection with the influencer owning the said server.
Making money on Discord
Of course, people are already figuring out how to generate a side income on Discord. If you’re an influencer with a relatively large following, it is possible for you to earn some bucks off your exclusive server access and fame.
For example, some creators are charging an entrance fee before anyone can access their servers. They can also promote their Patreon pages where fans can support them financially for their content. Others also opt to make members pay for special privileges and access on their servers— all subject to the owner’s discretion.
The great thing is, Discord does not take a portion of this revenue unlike other platforms. So whatever amount you get, you’re going to receive 100% of it.
There are so many platforms you can make use of if you want to expand your reach and grow your brand as a streamer, and Discord proves to be a great choice in doing so.
But before you create your own server, try to visualize what you intend to achieve with the help of your online community- may it be a follower milestone or a record-breaking total view count.
Setting these goals can help you manage your Discord online community better! Remember, it is entirely up to you to figure out a way how you can use the platform to your advantage.