What is self-branding and why is it important? Self-brand is like fusing perceptions of yourself with perceptions of how others see you. Ultimately, it can be a great way to help control perceptions, and it’s especially apparent during the pandemic as digital presence becomes more important than ever. Platforms like Zoom have been integrated into our everyday lives and became the “new norm”. Today, we will discuss how to brand yourself and the factors impacting your brand.
As a result of the pandemic, many people turned toward online entertainment, namely Twitch. During March 2020, Twitch viewership grew by 10% compared to the previous week and averaged 1.64m daily viewers4. As of today, there are 2.67m daily viewers a mere two years later5. However, the largest increase in Twitch viewers and streams occurred from March 2020 to April 2020, jumping from 1.64m to 2.49m viewers and 66k to 93k streamers5. The number of active channels, in which the user streams at least once per month, went from 3.6m in 2019 to 6.9m in 20206. The data shown supports the idea that we are living in a digital era, and that streaming as a hobby or side-gig is becoming more normalized.
Many factors come into play regarding the professionalism of your personal brand. Karen Leland, the president of Sterling Marketing Group, aids CEOs in developing their own brand. Leland concludes that in online videos – which include Zoom, YouTube, and Twitch – many factors come into play with establishing a professional-looking personal brand. Some factors include the color, background, camera position, lighting, and professionalism of attire1. Another point Leland brings up is that actors and YouTubers have known about these important factors for success, and now the majority of people use them in the digital age, showing how online media permeates the world post-pandemic1.
So, how can you brand yourself as a Twitch influencer? In the next three paragraphs, I will be discussing three important factors to consider when creating content.
The first factor to acknowledge is consistency and aesthetics. How do you want to be perceived? What is your theme? A variety of colors can indicate a variety of perceptions. For example, choosing pastel and light colors may indicate more of a relaxed tone, whereas using dark and cool colors may be seen as more mysterious. The colors you choose should be consistent with what you wear, your background, and your social media pages to maintain a cohesive look2.
Arguably one of the most important factors is knowing your niche. Think of a few influencers you watch on Twitch. What makes their content different from other influencers? It could be a certain game they play, their charisma and personality, or even streaming topics other than games. To really have an influence, find what you love and consistently post2. Look to influencers for inspiration, but ultimately create a brand that attracts a specific audience who understands and embraces your unique channel3.
Additionally, another factor to consider is to capitalize on what unique content you can offer. It’s one thing to have a niche as a vegan chef while streaming, but it’s another to show how you stand out from other vegan chefs2. Are you more of an activist than other streamers, or do you pride yourself in health and wellness? Consider the journey you took while developing your content and filming style, and embrace it to stand out from the competition.
The takeaway: start posting content and keep in mind the factors discussed above. The best time to start is today.