How to become a Twitch partner

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If you’ve ever planned to stream on Twitch or you’re currently an active streamer on the platform, chances are you’ve thought of becoming an officially recognized partner.

This status is highly coveted among broadcasters and streamers on Twitch. Rumor has it: becoming a “partner” on the platform has an intimidating history of high standards and difficult-to-pass screening phrases. But, are these claims true or are they merely allegations?

Many people believe that it’s almost impossible to become a Twitch partner if your channel is doing so-so. This article will help dispel the myths surrounding the process of becoming a Twitch partner, so buckle up and read on!

What is Twitch partnership?

A lot of streamers dream and hope to become a Twitch partner. It has been established as a sort of “ultimate goal” for many broadcasters on the platform.  As of 2020, there are over 40k Twitch Partners.

Simply put, Twitch partners become the face of the platform. They are a chosen group of streamers and broadcasters promoted by Twitch itself and a bunch of contracted talent meant to represent what the platform has to offer at the forefront.

Are you aiming to add to the growing numbers of Twitch partners? Great! We will discuss what it means to be a Twitch partner and what possible setbacks and difficulties you may face as a streamer applying for partnership status.

What Twitch is looking for in a “partner”

If you have built up a great audience on Twitch and are ready to level up from Affiliate, it’s time for you to take on the Twitch Partnership Program.

Partners are content creators on the platform who stream a variety of content, from games, music, talk shows, art, to just about anything else under the sun. Read all about Twitch’s Partner Program here.

To be eligible to apply to the Partner program, a streamer must meet the following requirements over a 30 day period.

  • Stream for 25 hours
  • Stream on 12 different days
  • Average of 75 viewers (concurrent viewership excluding hosts, raids and embeds)

Keep in mind that becoming eligible for Partnership does not automatically guarantee Partner status. Creators still need to go through the Affiliate onboarding process or fill out a partner application form.

These requirements serve as guidelines for you to get a grasp of what the platform is looking for among its partners. Factors such as how often you stream or how appropriate your content is will also be taken into serious consideration.

You must be able to maintain the minimum criteria required on a consistent basis and present various content that conforms to the platform’s Community Guidelines, Terms of Service and DMCA Guidelines.

After sending your application form, these will then be reviewed manually by the platform’s Partnerships team. The amount of time it takes to process an application varies on a case to case basis, since it mostly depends on the current influx of applications received. However, it usually takes 7 business days for a Twitch representative to get back to you.

If you’re wondering for a way to raise your chances of being accepted as a “partner”, having a good history on pre-recorded games gives you an advantage over others.

For instance, if you used to stream or create content on other platforms such as Youtube, you may give Twitch a good reason why they should pick you. All the more if your channel has hit over 15 000 views per video, achieved more than 100 000 subscribers, and is confirmed to stream non-abusive content.

However, it is possible to be accepted as a partner even without meeting these stated guidelines, and it is also possible to be denied partnership despite exceeding them.

Inclusive and more accessible requirements

Do note that Twitch partnership has become increasingly more accessible since its early implementation. The program first launched in 2012 and the listed requirements for partnership has been more lax, it has dropped significantly since then.

There was a time when Twitch wanted its partners to have a regular viewership above 2, 000. Since then, the listed requirement has dropped down to at least 500 viewers to 75 concurrent viewers. You can see how this has been stretched to much lower numbers.

As a result, more aspiring streamers can now apply to become a “partner.” With hard work, patience, and a little bit of luck — it’s possible for you to join the numbers of more than 40k partnered streamers on the platform.

By the numbers

Although the partnership program is considered as incredibly exclusive, Twitch made serious moves to improve the minimum qualifications and provide flexible monetization options for content creators. In 2019, the platform had over 35,580 partners which is a 32% stark increase from 2017.

It’s easy to determine why a lot of streamers dream of becoming a “partner” on the platform. It has a lot of benefits (including monetization options) to help you make revenue off your content. However, since it’s also technically a business arrangement, keep in mind that partnerships mean that you need to benefit Twitch as much as the platform benefits broadcasters.

Transcoding for partners is expensive to provide, as it requires hefty server space and maintenance costs. Onboarding and maintaining data for additional partners can get expensive quickly, plus there’s also the additional costs on support and promotion to be considered.

To justify these costs, Twitch has to select streamers they can reasonably expect to help the platform grow and head towards the right direction.

For Twitch newbies

If you’re an absolute Twitch novice who wants to follow the likes of Twitch superstar Shroud, who successfully made it big on the platform (even during the time he moved to Mixer before making a return) — there’s some good news for you. Your great ambition of climbing up the streaming ranks can prove to be a great decision to make.

You can try to apply for “partnership” in the very beginning of your career. This isn’t encouraged and widely ideal, since it’s better to give Twitch a solid reason why they should cater your request to be a partner. But, there’s no harm in trying, is there?

As Twitch states on the application page, you are free to apply even if you’re not currently creating video content elsewhere but think people would still tune in to watch you. Just make sure to indicate the reasons behind what makes you a potential good partner and describe the content you are planning to stream. Sometimes, although very rare, that may be enough.

Things to do before you apply

You can apply for Twitch Partnership whenever you feel ready. However, here are some tips to keep in mind before you submit your “partner” application for immediate review:

  • Broaden your audience count

Twitch is known to pick quality channels through positive word-of-mouth or a growing channel size. The platform is likely to get thousands of partnership applications weekly, so how do you make your channel be noticed?

Try to grow a large audience count so the few minutes they spend on checking out your personal channel would be worth it. Put in some effort and do whatever you can to make them take a better look of why they should select you as a partner.

  • Pick a game suited to your niche

While it is encouraged to go with what’s trending, especially in the weeks or months before you apply for the partnership, you might want to play to your strengths. Picking a game you’re good at can help you show signs of consistent channel growth over a reasonable period. Besides, who doesn’t like to see a good gamer own every match?

Settle into a niche where you can find yourself enjoying the game while grinding some growth with a new community.

  • Get your name noticed

It’s easy to get overwhelmed with your own broadcast when in the stage of improving your channel, but this may lead you to miss out on the larger picture. As a solution, get your name out there!

Watch other streamers, speak up in chats, be active on social media, help others improve their online communities – all these can help establish your internet presence. It will also keep your channel fresh in viewers’ minds.

  • Don’t be shy to ask for help!

Let your viewers know you are pushing for a Twitch partnership in mind. Letting the community know your intentions might encourage them to tune in, and other kind-hearted streamers might also give you the support you need.

If you have no community to approach, chances are you may not be ready to apply for partnership yet. Better buckle up and fix that immediately. Cultivate a social network to speak of on Twitch as early as today.

  • Get people excited

People should get excited when they check out your channel. Hence, you should work on establishing a sense of your channel identity. Update graphics, layout, and logos. Consider getting professional work done to give your channel the best.

Make your community active and involved. Activity in chat invites new viewers in, and activity on social media extends your channel’s reach. Maintain an atmosphere where your viewers are interested in making the channel better.

  • Explain why it is a good decision to choose you

Present the plans you have for your channel and prove to Twitch how it’s a good reason to invest in your success. Everyone on Twitch wants to achieve partnership at some point, but you need to highlight why the platform should pick you for the spot.

Those who already have a huge audience count are in good shoes, since that can be a solid reason in itself. However, those with a smaller and still-growing channel must establish a solid reason stretched into eloquently written paragraphs.

Tips to nail the application part

Feel free to apply for Twitch Partnership once you think you’re all set and ready.

The partnership application form contains an information box, where you should literally do your best to sell yourself and the content you are willing to offer. If you are a Twitch newbie, but you have a history or experience on other social networks or YouTube— you should present that info as an additional selling point.

Think of it as though you are applying for a job. You need to show your prospective employer why they need to hire you, so you have to show your channel is growing in the right direction.

However, do not fake your stats or history. Twitch developers check every info you provide them. Increase the chances of getting picked as a “partner” by presenting legitimate reasons and motives. Avoid inaccurate details and false information.

How long does the process usually take?

To answer the question, it varies from one case to another. As of 2020, Twitch says an official representative will get back to your application after 7 business days. However, there are cases where the application to be a Twitch partner can be approved from between a few months or at least a year.

For some, it can take months or even years to build up a small yet steady viewerbase. Remember: one viewer is a good start. Keep going and the number will increase at some point.

If you’re wondering what’s the reason behind such a long time frame, some applications don’t get approved during the first try. Aspirants are advised to try again at least 30 days from their last application, submitting their latest stats.

Submitting an application every other week is greatly discouraged, unless you are you are making big strides with your channel growth. Keep in mind that your general stats will not change much in a matter of weeks, and Twitch is generally looking at your channel over a longer period of time.

  • At least 6 months

Define is a Twitch partner who is famous for his streams on the action-packed, shooting game CS:GO. He is among the most watched Counter-Strike: Global Offensive channels on the platform.

With over 31, 000 followers on his channel, Define says it took him about 6 months to become an official Twitch partner. He worked with 1-2 viewers at first, which lasted for about 6 months before his viewers took off.

His advice? Keep grinding and be consistent. When it seems like your follower count is becoming stagnant for days or weeks, it’s when you should keep your head up and keep pushing.

  • A year and a half

Duo streamer Fremily (real-life couple Fred and Emily) have over 79K followers on their channel and are known for streaming indie/horror games on Twitch.

Fremily recounted how they had about 400 average views when they first got partnered, so it took them about 1 and a half years. They also had some help from some larger streamer friends at the time to help make the channel more known.

A word of advice? Just got to cross your fingers, they say. So many factors go into channel growth that it’s safe to say no 2 streams are alike. With determination and a bit of luck, you’ll definitely get there.

Is the “partner” status permanent?

Being granted a “partner” status doesn’t mean it’s irrevocable. As a partner, you are not immune to being suspended from the platform or getting your partner status revoked.

Such is the case of controversial steamer Mitch Jones, who was banned from Twitch after a suspension and later lost his partner status back in October 2019. Whatever the reason, it seems like red flags all over isn’t a good sign if you want to be a long-term Twitch streamer.

According to Twitch’s Terms of Service, once you are granted partnership— you are also not allowed to live stream games elsewhere, except on the platform. You may still post pre-recorded games and other non-game related videos on other platforms, though.

Benefits of becoming a Twitch partner

Partners can access exclusive site features to help them improve and monetize their content, such as guaranteed transcoding options, monetization options, advertisement revenue, Teespring program, cheering, and subscriptions.

A streamer’s source video can be re-encoded at various bitrates to enable viewers to choose a video quality best suited to their connection. The ad revenue helps run commercials on partners’ channels. They are then compensated by a flat rate CPM (cost per thousand) which is specified by their contracts. Nonetheless, partners can expect to receive a set amount of money for every thousand ads shown.

There’s also the Teespring Program which allows partners to sell their customized apparel. The shirts can be directly promoted and advertised via the Twitch store.

Subscriptions remain to be an important essence of a Twitch streamer. It allows their viewers to support them by paying a recurring monthly subscription. In return, subscribers can gain access to a wide variety of channel emotes, a custom subscriber badge, and ad-free viewing.

Other features exclusive to Twitch partners are possible direct promotion (front page promo, Twitch weekly, retweets), beta test access on upcoming features, an access to a priority support queue, and networking opportunities.

Check out the complete list of Twitch partner benefits on this page.

FAQ about Twitch Partnership

  • My channel is doing better and has better stats than Channel B, why is Channel B made an official Twitch partner over me?

As was previously mentioned, impressive stats and average views aren’t the main motives of being accepted as a Twitch “partner”. The platform screens each aspiring applicant on a case-by-case basis.

Perhaps you are using bots to boost your follower count or breaking the community terms and conditions at some point. The best thing to do is to review your channel and content carefully. Continue improving what you offer your viewers.

  • Do female streamers get partnership easier than males?

It may seem like it, but the requirements for partnership are equal for both genders. Twitch has made this clear in their community guidelines. Female streamers may seem to attract the audience easier, but this does not guarantee them an instant acceptance to become a partner.

Do not equate being a female streamer to automatic Twitch partnership with 5 and more viewers per stream. Remember that this is not the case all the time.

  • I am doing just as much as other “partnered” streamers but my application is still rejected, am I lacking something or is Twitch playing favorites?

To be fair, this can be subjective. Comparing yourself with other streamers (especially those who are already part of the partnership program) can be counterproductive. Adopting successful practices would be an asset but you are better off focusing on your own channel.

Constantly ask yourself what could be done better, and find the answers. Ask tips from fellow aspiring partners and official partners — if you know any. They may be competition, but there’s no need for you to consider them as hindrances to your goal. Learn from them instead.

  • There is too much competition! Is it impossible to be a “partner” if I am not well connected on Twitch?

Twitch is a melting pot of new prospective streamers with different content form and channel size, but the platform keeps it fair when selecting new partners. Competition shouldn’t hinder you from achieving your goals. In fact, you should let it fuel you to do better and become a better streamer.

Continuously work on your channel and find something that distinguishes your content from others. What makes you stand out? What can you offer your viewers that hundreds of other streamers can’t?

Finding the answers to these questions may consume a lot of time and be a rough journey, but then it will only prove how gaining Twitch partnership is not really an impossible task.

Put it this way: everyone has a chance, fair and square. You just need to figure it out from the starting point to make it across the finish line.

In case of a rejection

In case Twitch rejects your application, you can send them a message and ask what you can do to improve your stream.

Do what you can to work on what is suggested and apply once more. Try to wait for at least 100 or more viewers to your channel before sending the application again. Streamers are not encouraged to apply every single week. In the event of a rejection, wait for at least 30 days before trying again and submitting a new application.

Keep in mind that your stats are not gonna change in a night (except if there’s divine intervention or a miracle on your part). Twitch is looking for changes occurring over a longer period of time, so bide your time. As the old saying goes, patience is a virtue.

If you think Twitch is not for you, keep your head up and don’t lose hope. Your last resort is to consider other platforms, as there are still a lot of other streaming platforms you can choose from. Other platforms who are looking for “partners” have different qualifications and requirements— multiple rejections are not the end game for your streaming journey.

Bottomline

Applying for Twitch partnership can be a daunting task. Since it’s rather challenging, it’s not for the faint of heart! You may be rejected the first time you send your application, even if you are so confident in your credentials and track record.

However, in spite of all hurdles, there are so many chances for you to become an official partner as long as you continue to try.

Meeting all the set guidelines and requirements also doesn’t guarantee that your application will be instantly accepted. A lot of factors are taken into consideration while your application is being processed — so keep your head up and hope for the best.

Keep a positive mindset all throughout and develop a different approach when there are setbacks along the way. Surely, these will help you attain the Twitch partnership status you so desire.

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