- Jersey Mike's is testing an interactive advertising format on livestreaming platform Twitch that offers greater engagement between brands and viewers, per information emailed to Mobile Marketer. Twitch's multiplayer ads show viewers the same creative, followed by a poll that asks for their opinion about a topic, according to the Amazon-owned platform's help page.
- Twitch is conducting a closed test of the format to see what works best before making it available to more advertisers and creators. The platform gives creators an incentive to run multiplayer ads by offering them Twitch Bits, the digital currency viewers use to pay tips to their favorite streamers.
- The multiplayer ads will give advertisers a way to engage viewers and capture more information about their preferences from post-ad polls. Advertisers and creators can use the information to improve the consumer experience, according to Twitch.
With its multiplayer ads format, Twitch seeks to get viewers more involved with its livestreamed programming by asking them to view video ads and participate in a poll about their preferences. The ad format promises to grab the undivided attention of viewers, helping to lift brand awareness and recall. Marketers and creators also can glean more viewer insights to hone their future efforts to engage consumers.
For Twitch viewers who may not have funds to buy Twitch Bits directly, the multiplayer ads would give them a way to trade the value of their attention to a paid advertisement for a chance to reward their favorite streamers. Because those rewards give streamers another way to monetize their creative efforts, Twitch can boost adoption of the multiplayer ad format among its creator community and give more marketers a chance to engage viewers.
Twitch's viewership has surged this year as homebound folks seek fresh programming during the pandemic, and the platform expands its content offering beyond the livestreams of gamers like Tyler "Ninja" Blevins who has the biggest following, according to TwitchMetrics. The number of hours watched on Twitch surged during the pandemic's onset, before declining during the summer months as people spent more time outside. Now that the weather is getting colder in the Northern Hemisphere and more countries are reinstating lockdowns to combat a surge in coronavirus cases, Twitch's viewership is rising again, TwitchTracker's data indicate.
The increased viewership has lured a variety of brands seeking to reach audiences who are more elusive to traditional media channels like linear TV. Among the more recent examples, Dell's Alienware brand of high-performance gaming computers last month partnered with DJ and producer Steve Aoki on a video series for Twitch that culminated with a live concert. Retailer Lamps Plus in August sponsored three livestreams from Katie Ruvalcaba, a popular streamer of cooking shows, to showcase its lighting products in her kitchen. That same month, telecom giant Verizon started sponsoring a video game tournament that pitted popular Twitch streamers against each other. Twitch's multiplayer ads promise to give brands another way to engage younger viewers.