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💬 Is Twitch the Next Big B2B Thing?
How brands can use the channel to rise above all the 'bleh' content out there
In The B2B Bite, I break down the most interesting marketing stories into fun-size, actionable chunks to kick off your week.
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💬 Go Where No One Else Will Go
Twitch is on a bit of a tear right now. It ended 2020 having smashed its previous year record, with 17 billion hours streamed representing 83% growth.
What's interesting about this is that while gaming still makes up the bread and butter of the platform, there has been a huge increase in the consumption of content that doesn't involve people virtually slaying monsters or winning the Super Bowl. Over the past three years, the amount of non-gaming content, from cooking to music to just having a general natter, has quadrupled.
Even the likes of AOC, the future leader of the free world (yeah, that's right - I'm calling it), has found her way onto the platform, securing a position among the 20 biggest streams ever from her debut last year.
Recognising this surge in popularity, Twitch is putting the call out for brands to leverage the platform to reach an increasingly diverse audience. Here's Doug Scott, CMO of Twitch:
"Twitch is home to a hard-to-reach audience. Nearly 40% of our users don’t even watch traditional TV, so this is an audience many marketers don’t reach through other channels. But if brands want to reach our audience, they have to think about interaction. Most people don’t come to Twitch to sit back and watch, they come to interact. We have traditional video ad options, but the real power is in building more custom campaigns and acknowledging what makes the community unique."
"OK Jason, but we're an enterprise software provider - it's hardly like our target buyer persona is going to be looking for us on Twitch", is probably what you're muttering under your breath while cursing me a fool.
I wouldn't be so sure. It's a fact that buyers are getting younger and doing more of their research online - 73% of millennials are involved in B2B purchasing decisions. And guess what? They also make up over a quarter of Twitch's audience.
COVID has levelled the playing field in B2B. The company that will win isn't the one that can afford the largest and sparkliest tradeshow booth; it's the one that can use digital channels creatively to capture eyeballs and start up a direct conversation. Both during work hours and out. And Twitch can help you do that.
Now, that’s not to say that B2B companies aren’t already using digital to reach their audience. Many are. It’s just that there’s a lot of noise out there, or, if you want the scientific term, ‘bleh’. Poorly written white papers that do nothing but blow smoke cram our newsfeeds. And because of this, brands should consider telling their story across any channel that can give them an edge.
This year, I expect we'll see more brands experiment with live, lo-Fi platforms like Twitch and Clubhouse as part of their wider marketing communications mix. And why the hell not? Competition is relatively low, as is the barrier-to-entry; simply create an account and start streaming.
There's also ample opportunity to get creative. Here are some quick-fire ideas:
Host an impromptu discussion with your CEO on Clubhouse about some breaking news in your industry, positioning yourself the centre of the conversation.
Run through a live customer onboarding on Twitch with an actual live customer to show how quick it is to get up and running with your product.
Use Clubhouse as an impromptu CS channel, answering questions in real-time from your audience on how to get the most out of the product.
Put your product's capabilities on show like Melodrive did when it hosted a 24-hour live stream on Twitch of its AI piano music solution that adapted in real-time as people commented.
Remember that with platforms like Clubhouse and Twitch, it's not about high-quality production value - it's about authentic, human connection.
After seeing it recommended a metric crap-ton on Twitter, I finally caved and picked up 'Junior' by Thomas Kemeny. It's a fun, easy read on how to make it in advertising that will make lovers of premium bookbinding pass out in delight. Even for someone who has been producing copy for over a decade, it’s sometimes useful to be reminded that writing should be fun.
I don't spend as much time on Reddit as I used to. What with Slack, Twitter, email, WhatsApp, Teams, LinkedIn and all the other apps vying for my attention, I struggle to find the time. But this week I stumbled on a post that directed me to a site with hundreds of high-quality marketing e-books from some of the best minds in the biz. Annnnd there goes my weekend.
Chantelle Marcelle - otherwise known as the 'Ruler of Twitter Lists' (seriously, check them out - she's made one for almost everything marketing-related) - posted a great thread at the start of the month on 7 creative marketing tactics to test out in 2021. How many have you tried?
...…and here’s my podcast
Every two weeks I sit down with a marketing leader to lean how they hit their goals by thinking outside the box - and dig into how this can be applied to other B2B businesses. Here are a few of my most recent episodes.
You can also find the B2B Better on Apple Podcasts and almost all other podcast directories.
And that's it! See you next week.