Can You Make Money From Live Streaming?

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Photo credit: Caspar Camille Rubin

The internet has made it easier than ever to share your music with more people than ever. One way you can do this is through live streaming. Artists do make money from live streaming, but is it anything substantial? If so, how do you get into it?

How Much Money Streamers Make

Like most career paths in music, a small number of artists succeed at making a living while most others make a middle- to lower-class income from the same path. Some artists make a living from live streaming. But is it realistic to think you’ll be able to do the same? Let’s look at the numbers.

According to StreamYard, if you have an average of 5-10 daily viewers on Twitch for 30 days, you can make $50-200 a month. While if you have 10,000 average daily viewers, you can make $30,000 a month. This income is a combination of viewer tips, subscribers, and affiliate marketing.

According to QQTube, the average per-view payout on YouTube Live is $0.018. So if you stream every day and you average 100 viewers a day for 30 days, you’d make $50. While if you have 1,000 viewers a day, you could make about $540 in a month.

Ultimately, it can be difficult to make significant money as a live streamer. This is the overarching feeling in this conversation of streamers.

One streamer said they work between 12-18 hours a day on streaming and they make less than half of what a part-time fast food job earns. Another person said they’ve been streaming for a year and made about $3,000 total. And another commenter said they invested $2,000 into their live-streaming setup and made $200 that year.

Can You Make a Living Live Streaming?

Based on the numbers and the input of live streamers, you need to approach streaming with a healthy and realistic mindset. Like most things, you should do it because you enjoy it, not as a cash grab. Yes, you can make money doing it, but most streamers won’t make a living solely from streaming.

“Going into streaming to make money, you’re gonna have a bad time,” one streamer said.

So if you really love streaming, then go for it. As you build your music career, it’s all about focusing on the things you enjoy most, and then trying to make money from those things. And if live streaming is one of those things, do it!

How To Succeed at Live Streaming

According to people with experience in live streaming, here are the factors you should focus on as you start your streaming endeavors.

Streaming consistency

The time invested in live streaming significantly impacts your earnings. Generally, dedicating more hours to streaming increases the likelihood of attracting viewers, subscribers, and donations. Consistent streaming builds a loyal audience base over time.

Content quality

The quality of your content may be just as important as consistency. Streamers who deliver engaging, entertaining, and interactive streams are more likely to get more attention. So make sure you have high-quality audio and video, an interesting background, and engaging energy.

Audience connection

Engage with your viewers through chat, responding to comments and questions, and fostering a welcoming and inclusive community. This will make people feel seen and want to come back to your future streams.

Collaboration and networking

Collaborating with fellow streamers and engaging in the community of the platform you use can broaden your reach and exposure. This can lead to cross-promotion, a win-win for both you and the other musician.

Income diversification

Successful live streamers almost always make money in multiple ways. They get tips and subscriptions, sell merch, get sponsorships, and do affiliate marketing. This is the way to make a reliable income streaming.

The Best Websites and Apps for Live Streaming

If you’re serious about live streaming, you might as well harness the money-making opportunities of all the platforms. The most well-known places to stream and make money today include Twitch, YouTube, Facebook, and TikTok.

But to make your life easier, you may want to use a multistreaming service that lets you go live on all of your platforms at the same time. There are several of these services, but some of the most relied-upon places are Restream, StreamYard, and Switchboard.