If you want to add overlays, now is the time, but it is not mandatory. An overlay is just an image or text that appears on top of your stream, and it can be a complex image surrounding elements in your scene, just like a single line of text indicating your Twitter handle. To add an overlay, add a new source, and select Image. Keep an eye on the order of the sources in the list. Sources at the top of the list will appear on top of sources lower in the list, so if something goes missing, you probably need to rearrange the order of the items in the list. If the image is a PNG, the parts with transparency will keep the transparency, which is how many streamers add cool effects and other details to their streams. Overlays are definitely the best way on how to get viewers on Twitch.
Be sure to ensure that your webcam and overlays do not obscure important game details. Blocking the view of even small UI elements can be frustrating for the viewer. And if you plan to stream multiple games, you can record several different scenes, varying only slightly in size and position of clips, to make sure everything is always perfectly placed. Scenes are a great way to change your stream on the fly.
At this point, you should have a working stream, but that doesn’t mean anyone will be watching it. There are a whole bunch of tips for getting viewers, but one of the most important things is consistency. Developing good habits every time you stream is fundamental to building an audience. And even if you want to stream for fun and don’t aim to end up on the Twitch homepage, there are some things that can’t go wrong.
It might sound trivial, but let people know when you are streaming. It’s great to play live. It’s even better when people know you’re doing it. A little Tweet when you stream, a little message to Facebook friends, or shout it out the window, you never know. You might not have a lot of followers at first, but that’s because you’ve just started, and the only way to get attention is to get noticed. Your audience count can snowball at times, so even if your first five viewers are friends of yours, the next five probably won’t.
Another good practice is to activate Panels on your Twitch page and write a short description. Let people know who you are (without revealing confidential information) and why they should be looking at you. In the same vein, try to read the chat and respond if possible. Twitch has a built-in delay of around 20 seconds, but people love to be listened to and answered. Once again, even if you don’t plan on becoming one of the most-watched Twitch channels, these habits will help you become a better streamer in the long run.
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