Advertising Inside Game and Live Streaming Platforms: Q&A With Clearcode and inStreamly


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Organizations and entities are increasingly recognizing the potential of advertising within gaming and game streaming platforms. As this dynamic advertising landscape evolves, concepts, financial allocations, and prerequisites are expanding in tandem with the growth of this emerging channel. Concurrently, the AdTech industry is diligently working to establish new standards aimed at enabling brands to efficiently connect with new audiences.

In a recent video interview, Michael Sweeney, Head of Marketing at Clearcode, engaged in a conversation with Wiktoria Wójcik, the Co-Founder at inStreamly. This insightful dialogue delves into the intricacies of advertising within the game and live streaming realm, shedding light on the innovative strategies and opportunities that brands can leverage to enhance their outreach.

As brands navigate the dynamic landscape of game and live streaming platforms, Wiktoria Wójcik shares valuable insights into the evolving trends, challenges, and the unique potential that this advertising channel presents.

The Questions Covered In the Video

  • What does inStreamly do?
  • What’s the current state of game and live streaming?
  • What are the main types of streamers?
  • How difficult is it to be able to provide sponsorship on livestreams?
  • Can it be considered as a form of advertising, or is it more similar to the types of sponsorship that you would generally see on a lot of YouTube creators?
  • With the actual creative of the sponsorship, is that something that the brands generally come to you with already, or is that something that you work with them on to provide best practices? 
  • What kind of ad targeting is available and what type of measurement data is also available to brands?
  • What kind of information can brand see about how well their campaigns performed, etc.?
  • What’s the general response from brands and do you work with brands that would be investing a lot in this, or are you starting to see some brands that are experimenting in this?
  • The growth of game & live streaming and sponsorship within livestreaming over the next 5 or so years — what does that look like from your perspective, how do you see this channel growing and where will the growth come from?
  • What are vstreamers and vtubers?

Below is the transcript from the video interview above.

Michael Sweeney: Hello everyone, my name is Michael Sweeney and I’m Head of Marketing here at Clearcode

In today’s video, I’m joined by Wiktoria Wójcik, who is the Co-Founder at inStreamly, and we’ll be talking about advertising inside game streaming platforms.

So Wiktoria, thank you so much for joining me today.

Wiktoria Wójcik: Yeah, thank you for inviting me and hello everyone.

Michael Sweeney: You’re very welcome. So before we jump to the questions, Wiktoria, just tell us a few words about yourself and what you guys do at inStreamly.

Wiktoria Wójcik: Sure. Hi, I’m Wiktoria, I’m a co-founder of inStreamly, one out of four co-founders. I had a background in, let’s say, gaming, live-streaming, esports. 

I was a streamer myself, then an esports host and interviewer, then worked in an esports organization and for a while I was also an expert in gaming marketing.

At inStreamly, what we do is, to put it simply, we help brands reach gamers in a way that those gamers appreciate and in the process we are helping gaming streamers earn on their passion. 

So we are making it easy for streamers that even have, like, 20 viewers to work with the top brands like Samsung, Netflix, or PlayStation.

Michael Sweeney: Excellent. So maybe just tell us a little bit more about the current state of game streaming, because you mentioned before yourself that you were involved in that, that’s your background. 

I personally don’t know a lot about game streaming, the only kind of association I have is with this Pewdiepie guy, I guess that’s, kind of, related. 

But just tell us a little bit about the actual game streaming landscape, what types of platforms are being used for streaming, and also what audiences are consuming the streams, etc., what does that look like?

Wiktoria Wójcik: Alright, so with game streaming and broadly, let’s say, start with livestreaming, so livestreaming is a huge market and basically at any platform, be it YouTube, or Instagram, or TikTok, you will see people streaming live. 

What we are focusing on is people who stream video games, or are streaming to the video games audience primarily. 

So in this case, we have, let’s say, in the Western world, because there’s also Asia, especially China that’s quite different, but the biggest player of course is Twitch and it has around 70% to 80% share of the market, depends on the year, depends on the month. 

Then we have YouTube, Youtube is, in my view, in the best position to win live streaming overall in the next few years.

Maybe not in gaming, maybe Twitch will stay and have their position in gaming, but in any other content category, the creators are already on YouTube, they do not need to move to Twitch or to anywhere else, but they can livestream. 

So I see a huge opportunity there.

And then we have a dark horse of this race, a new one, Kick platform that was created by…I don’t even know who created it, to be honest. 

It has some associations with a gambling platform, but is used as an alternative for Twitch with better split rates for subscriptions, so for fun support for the streamers, and a more loose approach to content moderation, which made it very interesting for streamers to go in and be more free with what they stream and how they stream. 

And it’s getting more and more traction. 

Then we have Trovo, Trovo is a platform that’s backed by Tencent and it has some popularity in, let’s say, Brazil, Latin America, and smaller countries around Europe. 

And we of course have Facebook, maybe it’s weird saving it for last, but Facebook had a very big push a couple of years ago. 

They were paying even streamers in Poland a lot of money to stream on the platform and basically everyone took the deal, got the payday, and once the contract finished they switched back to Twitch. 

So Facebook is revamping their livestreaming efforts, they are quite popular as livestreaming platform in Asia, especially Southeast Asia, their live streaming on Facebook is very strong, but in Europe, we’ll still be talking, in Europe, in the United States especially, it’s going to be Twitch, then nothing for a while, and then we can talk about YouTube, and maybe Kick as the rest of the platforms.

Michael Sweeney: Cool, very interesting. So you mentioned a moment ago about the streaming of live events, so I guess there’s, kind of, maybe, let’s say, two different categories.

You’ve got the game streamers, which as you said, kind of, use Twitch as the platform, and then you’ve got regular content creators that create lots of different content about different things, but incorporate livestreaming into that content production, right. 

Is that, kind of, how it looks?

Wiktoria Wójcik: Yeah, I would say the split is very, very concrete. And I say those normal content creators, for them livestreaming is more of a tool to connect with the audience. 

Like a lot of personalities, for example, BLACKPINK use livestreaming to just seem more human and to connect with the viewers. 

When we are talking about gaming livestreaming, I would lie if I said that all that gaming streamers do is stream games, because it’s not true. 

If you go on Twitch and see what’s the most popular, most watched category within the last three years, the last month, the last week, it’s always gonna be just chatting, so it’s nothing to do with games, but the audience is still the same. 

The streamer is the same streamer who will be on just chatting, just chatting with the chat for an hour, and then go stream a game, or two, or another game.

And it’s still gonna be a gaming audience, gaming livestreaming, even if the content is not gaming at the moment.

So for example, when I was a streamer I was streaming mainly League of Legends and let’s be honest, nobody watched me for League of Legends content because I was a very, very bad player. 

People watched me for my personality and this is what they do for all the streamers. They choose the game they prefer as a context, but watch a streamer for their personality, for how entertaining, fun, interesting they are.

I had, like, 25 viewers, concurrent viewers, when streaming League of Legends and one day I had to prepare dinner and I decided okay, I’m just gonna go on stream and peel potatoes and make cucumber salad, just on the stream, just to talk with people, and pass the time while I’m making the dinner. 

And I had 80 people watching me peel potatoes and talk about religion, philosophy, culture, etc., and most of those people were people who usually watch me play games. 

And it wasn’t gaming content, but still the audience, the platform, the context was much more gaming driven than if I were to stream the same thing, for example, on TikTok. 

So this is why I say that Twitch is right now a primarily gaming, or with a gaming audience in mind, platform, and YouTube is more positioned to take livestreaming as a medium more broadly.

Michael Sweeney: Yeah, that’s a super interesting insight because, yeah, I don’t have a lot of knowledge about the whole streaming thing, whether it’s game streaming or livestreaming, but, yeah, I always, kind of, thought that it was essentially people watch these streams because they want to see people play their games, right. 

But as you said, there’s different ways that people can be entertained through these, but as you said, the audience, generally, is still going to be people who watch game streams, but it’s more about the person’s personality rather than, I guess, the actual game because those people could go and play themselves.

Wiktoria Wójcik: Yeah, we even did a research on over a couple of thousand stream viewers and 85% of them said the reason they watch streams is because they simply like the streamer. 

And I like this comparison to going bowling with your friends. So you choose to go bowling because bowling is better than kayaking. 

You don’t like kayaking, you’ll go bowling with your friends, but it’s not like you are oh God, I need to go bowling, I will play bowling, this is so great. 

No, you’re, like, okay, let’s go bowling, let’s have fun together as a friend group in the context of bowling. So it’s the same with choosing a stream to watch, a streamer to watch.

Of course I’m gonna choose the League of Legends category, because I prefer League of Legends over CS:GO the same way I prefer bowling over kayaking, but then which streamer I chose, who I interact with, how much time I spend there, it’s more about the person and the game is just the context.

Of course, there will be people who are watched because they are the best at the game. 

There are a couple of streamers, there’s a couple of them in each category and they are so good and their content is about them being good and maybe showing some knowledge about the game. 

And of course it’s better to get and it’s easier to become a popular streamer if you are very good at games because, let’s be honest, it’s very frustrating to watch somebody lose all the time. 

Of course this can be fun sometimes, but usually the better you play, the more likely you will have people watch you.

Michael Sweeney: Yeah, that’s a super cool analogy, the way you explained it. 

I guess, I don’t know, when you were saying that, I thought maybe karaoke is also another example where a lot of people don’t say oh, I need to go and sing in a bar, but you do it because you’re with your friends as well, but yeah, the bowling analogy is super interesting, so it definitely makes a lot of sense. 

So let’s maybe talk a little bit about the advertising, or as you said it’s more about sponsorship and branded placements inside game streams, and livestreams, etc., so first of all, how does that, kind of, look?

Because we’ve got, you mentioned the major platforms like Twitch, YouTube, Facebook even, these are all walled gardens, right, closed off systems essentially. 

So let’s maybe, kind of, start with that, how does a company like inStreamly get into that, is that a fairly difficult thing, is it like you have to set up some kind of business relationship with these platforms, and then there’s some, sort of, API or something like that? 

How difficult is it, without going too much into sensitive, confidential information, but how difficult is it to be able to provide sponsorship on livestreams on these platforms?

Wiktoria Wójcik: So maybe I’ll explain briefly what we do and answer your questions. In a sense, we deal directly with the streamers and we may make dealing with the streamers directly just easier. 

So in the past, if you were to even place just a stupid logo on a stream, you had to contact the streamer, agree on the rate, sign an agreement, then negotiate how long it’s gonna be seen and if they could turn off the logo when they are playing a certain game, because the brand doesn’t want to be associated with the game, and then you have to get the reporting, and pay the money. 

There’s a lot of steps only with one streamer, so if you are thinking about working with 10 or 20 streamers, this becomes a full-time job for one person just to set it up. 

And it meant that most of the brand appearances within streams were only with the top biggest streamers and 99.9% of streamers on Twitch have less than 100 concurrent viewers so they have people who watch them for several hours a day and they are very engaged, they are in contact with them. 

But those streamers cannot even dream about working with those big brands. 

So in short, we make it very easy to have a brand appear within a stream, and then to measure how many people have seen it, to measure how many people clicked the link and the CTA in chat. 

And then we can go fancy, so have a different kind of messaging depending on what game is streamed, or even react to what happens in the streamed game and say when a streamer is winning, then the brand appears saying this one is for the winner and drink this drink if you are a winner. 

And because we are constantly in conversation with the data of what’s happening in the stream, but in the end, the content that we place within the stream, the brand placement, brand advertising is inside the streamer’s content before it even hits the platform. 

So it’s unblockable by Adblocks and it’s more similar to how streamers worked with brands before, or, for example, how Youtubers work with brands right now. 

So you have something directly in the content. 

So we are dealing, like we made something that was very manual, very hard to do with many streamers, very tedious, and in the end a lot of times boring, or just simple, into more interactive, more interesting way that also helps us and makes it possible to work with, let’s say, 2000 streamers in one campaign. 

Usually, within one day of a campaign, we will have around 500 streamers participating in it. 

When it comes to working with the platforms, of course we need some kind of automation and connection to the data. 

So of course, we gather from the Twitch API, we gather the data about people watching the stream and we gather the data about what’s happening in the chart etc., but the whole dealing is more on the relationship between streamer and the brand and us facilitating this relationship than dealing with the platform. 

In a way, when a streamer streams to YouTube and Twitch at the same time, we just gather data from those two platforms and the streamer gets paid for both of them. 

And we are looking to expand to other streaming platforms within this year, I hope so. We are not in a hurry because those two platforms cover the majority of the market, but we are in good talks to get more platforms on board.

Michael Sweeney: Perfect. So just touching on that advertising part again as well, because you mentioned that, I mean maybe this is gonna be another question. 

Do you consider this as a form of advertising, or is it more similar to, as you said, the types of sponsorship that you would generally see on a lot of YouTube creators? 

What does the kind of format look like, because I guess it’s not, like, a typical banner ad inside a game stream, right, it’s more of, as you said, a sponsorship type thing.

So what does the format, kind of, look like for the sponsorships and branded placements?

Wiktoria Wójcik: Okay, so the visual format is in a form of animation that can change depending on streamed game, or what’s written in the chat, etc., the format itself does not impact whether you perceive it as an advertising or a sponsorship. 

The relationship between the streamer and the brand does. 

So with advertising, most of the time, in a sense of ads on YouTube or anywhere else on the Internet, you don’t have much control what’s visible in your content.

In our case, every streamer chooses the campaigns to join, they see what’s the campaign about, what brand, how it looks like, and they have a choice to join it to represent the brand or not. 

And the second thing is, we call it sponsorships because for the past 10 years of live streaming, every time a brand appears within a stream, even if it was just a logo, even if it was just a piece of text, it was still called a sponsorship because it was directly in the content, it was chosen, embedded by the streamer. 

And we come from this pedigree, we want the streamers to perceive that they have a relationship with the brand, and also responsibility towards the brand they are representing. 

They have to behave in a certain way and they have to behave a certain way to the brand and of course the viewers also know it, so the viewers perceive those brands as sponsors, as people who help their favorite creators earn on their passion instead of just another ad that’s intrusive, because it’s also, it takes a smaller part of the stream, so it also is just more interesting for the viewers and less intrusive. 

And that’s why we call it sponsorships. Of course in some understanding, sponsorship is similar to sponsoring a football team, and this is quite far away.

So we call ourselves that we sit somewhere in the middle between influencer marketing, because it’s thousands of micro influencers choosing to work with a brand, digital media, because it’s measurable, you can run a/b tests, you can get data about every single moment when the brand was visible and we work on this data to optimize those campaigns. 

And from the third site, we are a bit like TV, so we are baked into the content, unblockable by ad blocks, the targeting is also content, not viewer based. 

And in the end, we also allow for much more creativity within the format than the standard mold of, let’s say, digital media has.

Michael Sweeney: Excellent, cool. I’ve got a couple of questions regarding the ad targeting and measurement part as well because I think that’s super important for brands, it’s probably one of things they ask you about all the time. 

But just with the actual creative of the sponsorship and that kind of thing, is that something that the brands generally come to you with already, or is that something that you work with them on to, kind of, provide best practices? 

Is it, like, a collaborative process between yourself, the brands, and even some of the streamers, or how does that kind of process look?

Wiktoria Wójcik: Yeah, it’s a new format in an area that’s not very well understood and very well known by marketers. 

So of course, we can work and with some brands, we work in a way that they deliver the creative, the artwork, maybe just get a feedback from us and that’s all. 

And with some brands, we help them craft whole campaigns, or just an idea for getting their, let’s say, TV ad and digital messaging and just molding it in a way that it suits livestreaming and gaming. 

So, we do those things because we know that it’s needed, that the help is still needed and appreciated. And we also expand into even helping brands with their overarching gaming marketing strategy, and bigger things, like even creating maps inside games like Roblox and Fortnite. 

So basically, we are able to branch out but it’s not needed, so if somebody just gets the technical and, let’s say, creative guidelines for the artwork, they can do it on their own and it’s not a problem for us. 

And in the future probably it’s gonna just be more and more brands. 

Usually, it’s like the first time we do it, the second time it’s a collaborative thing, and the third time the brand and their agency are able to do it on their own.

Michael Sweeney: Perfect. So, let’s maybe go back to those points about ad targeting and measurement that you mentioned before. 

So what does that look like in the streaming environment, what kind of ad targeting is available and what type of measurement data is also available to brands?

Wiktoria Wójcik: So when it comes to targeting, we are able to target per streamer, so we can exclude some streamers if the brand has has a blacklist or anything. 

We can target certain hours within a day and also change the messaging. 

So for example, if you have a convenience store, in the morning you might want to promote your coffee machine, and then in the evening, you want to maybe promote some lunch options. 

And then we can also target by content. 

So for example, you can exclude certain games. There are brands that really want to exclude every game that has realistic shooting in it, and we make sure that the brand will not be visible in those categories. 

And then we can also target by demographics in a sense that we gather demographics from the streamers, we are able to say okay, those streamers and this type of content will reach mostly older audiences, this type younger audiences, and we are able to skew the targeting one way or the other. 

So, we are also able to segment per game in a sense or pay per game category. 

If you’re a brand running a competition around League of Legends, you probably only want to promote in the League of Legends category and this is also possible.

Michael Sweeney: Perfect, excellent. And what about the measurement data, like you mentioned before you’ve got analytics and that kind of stuff, so what kind of information can brands see about how well their campaigns performed, etc.?

Wiktoria Wójcik: So they get every data. I’d say that wasn’t previously possible and just, like, manual sponsoring. 

So they get overall data of the campaign, the number of views, number of clicks, number of unique viewers, category streamed, unique brand appearances, and then they get data per each category. 

So they get data per streamer, they can view each streamer, the number of views of each streamer, and each time the streamer displayed the brand placement. 

So they can go really in-depth, and also see the CTRs of certain streamers and identify the, for example, biggest brand promoters for the future collaborations. 

Then you have categories, so you can see which messaging performed in which category, or just overall the campaign. So you have the clicks, number of views, the CTR, all this data for each category. 

And then if you have multiple artworks, for example if you want to do A/B tests, we also have this data for every time an artwork is shown, we know who had shown it, how many viewers there were, how many people clicked, unique viewers of that, what category was streamed, etc., so there is a lot of granular data. 

We also provide demographics data, the demographics data has one issue that it’s driven by Google Analytics and it means that it’s not covering people under 18, which is a lot of the category, but still it gives you a pretty good overview of who was the main major audience that you reached. 

So this is available in a live dashboard if it’s needed. And we also provide a direct report at the end, so we create a presentation with all the major data, and also with our recommendations for future campaigns, how to optimize it. 

So we’ve done, like, 500 campaigns and it means that based on this humongous amount of data, we are able to now decide where and how to set up a campaign in a way that it just delivers the best results.

Michael Sweeney: Excellent, sounds cool. So let’s talk about the brand side of things for now.

Like beside from the advertisers, brands that want to show their sponsorships, for example, on streaming, game streaming, etc., so what’s the general response from brands and do you guys work with brands that would be investing a lot in this, or are you starting to see some brands that are experimenting in this? 

What does that, kind of, look like from the brand perspective?

Wiktoria Wójcik: For most of the brands, the first campaign is always an experiment, so we start slow. And then we try to become a part of the media plan every time there is a Gen Z targeted campaign, or young people targeted campaign. 

It doesn’t even have to be targeted to gamers, because we help to tailor your back to school messaging in a way that it will fit within this game in context. 

For brands, for sure sometimes it’s hard to place us, because we are not entirely influencer marketing, not entirely digital media. 

In a sense, you can still put us in the Excel between Facebook and Google and see the measurements, the CTRs, the views, the CPV, etc., like we can be in this Excel, but still we are more in the non standard category. 

So we usually either work directly with brand marketers, people who care about brands going into those new places, reaching those gamers, and then with them we just go to their media agencies to distribute it. 

And with some media agencies, we have worked for over 3 years now that we are just a part of the media plan every time there is a Gen Z gaming angle within a campaign. 

So we’re then, it goes very, very quick and for the brands we are just a channel that’s fitting in this hole that was not filled before, especially in a media sense. 

And for brands, I’d say that they get excited with the creative opportunities that we bring. For example, ability to react to what happens in the game, or ability to react to what people type in a chat. 

Right now, we are, just in a week, releasing a campaign where we’ll be reacting to what the streamer says, so a voice recognition campaign. 

And we bring those opportunities and from this you can build up very, very interesting campaigns that are going much further than just saying you’re just running media within a stream. 

And I think this gets people excited, this gets people excited also because they know that esports is in a very rough spot, like a lot of sponsors withdrew, are checking the results and they are searching for a way to fill this void to reach those gamers. 

Influencer marketing got expensive and it was very expensive in streams, because it was not really well measured, it was very rare, because you had maybe 40 streamers on a given market and then they were too small to work with them, and then we come and unlock it. 

So it’s really fun, I’m not saying it’s very easy to sell, I’m saying it’s very easy to get people excited, but to sell, people have to make this effort to go out of their way, out of their standard media, to be willing to do something different. 

Once they do and they figure out it’s quite easy to do so, they stick with us, but the first moment, and the push, and the relationship, and the explanation, and knowledge that needs to be shared to have it done, it’s a pain point for us, so if there is a very innovative marketer that likes to do things differently, we might be a great fit to work with you.

Michael Sweeney: Perfect. Yeah, I mean I think that’s a great point as well, because I think for marketers, brand managers, etc., I think a lot of the time they, kind of, stick to the traditional channels, right, the ones that they know and have used many, many times. 

But I think it all comes down to the audience, ultimately, right, is finding the audience regardless of where they are, you know. 

And I think with streaming, it’s, kind of, like a, you probably, I wouldn’t say guarantee, but you, kind of, know that the audience are all going to be pretty similar, right. 

Like they’re all gonna have similar interests to a certain point, right. It’s not, like, when you’re watching TV, there’s lots of different people that could be watching the same TV program, for example. 

But with streaming, it’s a little bit more of a definition of the audiences maybe in some way, I guess, with that. 

So I think there’s certainly a lot of potential that it’s, kind of, maybe in a way similar to, as you mentioned before, some other kind of channels.

Like influencer marketing you mentioned, even maybe in-game advertising where, because that’s a fairly big channel as well now, there’s a bit more investment in that, showing actual ads on digital billboards, for example. 

But that’s a little bit of a different format to what you guys are doing, the sponsorship part is a little bit more, you’re probably gonna get a bit more awareness of the brand and it may be a bit easier to measure as well. 

So it definitely sounds like a very interesting channel that, as you said, brands should certainly explore, and experiment with as well. 

Because it’s all about experimentation, you’re not going to know if it works until you try, basically.

Wiktoria Wójcik: Yeah, I think that the biggest USP that we deliver is that we reach this audience that you cannot reach in any other way, because they either play games, or they watch gaming content and they use adblock, so good luck reaching them. 

We are inside the content that they watch and it’s unblockable by adblocks, so this is the way we solve it for sure.

Michael Sweeney: Yeah, definitely a very strong selling point. Excellent. 

The last question I have is about the growth of game streaming, and sponsorship within livestreaming as well, over the next, sort of, 5 or so years. 

So what does that kind of look like from your perspective, how do you see this channel growing and where will the growth come from? 

For example, will it be, as you said, about educating more brands about the potential and the advantages of this channel and the possibilities for them, or will it come from somewhere else? 

What does the, kind of, growth look like and where will it come from over the next, sort of, 5 or so years, let’s say?

Wiktoria Wójcik: So maybe I’ll start with how livestreaming will evolve, because I think brands always follow the eyeballs and the eyeballs will follow the growth of livestreaming. 

So first, I think we’ll get more worth between the platforms. I think YouTube overslept, they could have been much bigger in the last five years and they did not do much to address some pain points. 

They did, actually, last year do a lot of things to be on par feature wise with Twitch. I still believe in a sense that the Twitch monopoly will fall. 

It’s gonna be Kick, it’s gonna be YouTube, maybe multiple platforms, maybe more niche platforms for other kinds of live streaming, but we’ll get there. 

The second thing is the future of creators collectives, or like teams. 

We had this huge craze of esports teams that basically were entertainment companies, because the part of esports players playing the game, the best in the world, there were also streamers and content creators and a lot of it was based on getting to people with the content, with the entertainment value. 

So right now, those creators are skipping just doing the esports part, and they are doing just creator teams, working together on content, creating distribution channels, their own events etc., great example is OTK, a group of streamers led by Asmongold, one of the biggest streamers in the world. 

And they are doing streams together, they are doing their own indie game showcase events, other events, and they are also, right now, creating a publishing company for video games that will help market those games by working with the creators they have in this talent collective. 

And they, of course, are doing branded events, etc., a lot of content for brands, because this is how you earn money.

So we’ll see more of those teams, and also not only from big creators but also small creators, they are goning to team up. 

And technology, I think the rise of vtubers, vstreamers in the past couple of years. Last year, I think, at some point in the top 10 most watched streamers, there were 3 or 4 vtubers, vstreamers streaming. 

So it’s just gonna get bigger and I think brands will need to follow that. 

So we will see brands moving their budgets into either bespoke events created together with the creators, because those creators understand their audiences, or just overall getting into livestreaming, because it’s gonna be the place where people like celebrities stream to get in touch with their audiences. 

The second thing we will get, of course, these vtubers, more brands trying to make their own vtubers, more brands failing on doing that, and maybe sponsoring some vtubers and going into those virtual spaces and creating instead of events that take place offline, they would create, like, virtual places and online events with those vstreamers. 

Maybe we’ll see that. 

And the third thing, I think they will just follow the audiences, so I don’t see any way for livestreaming to really go down. 

I don’t think gaming, livestreaming, especially in the main market, the Western market, will grow much higher. 

Of course we have India, of course we have Latin America where there is potential to bring in more people.

And fun fact, in India, you have multiple localized livestream platforms and Twitch isn’t even in the top 3, I think, of the most popular gaming livestreaming platforms. 

So we’ll see a bit more fragmentation on the market and it’s gonna be a bit harder for brands to just be on top of what’s happening, but on the other hand, it’s gonna get so normal that you are visible in games, visible in livestreams

Like within five years, if somebody goes on a conference, marketing conference, and makes a presentation talking to marketers like oh, gaming is so big, gaming is so great, I hope that everyone leaves the room because this is nothing new. 

And in five years, I hope that we finally will get past the point of talking about oh, gaming is new and important and we’ll get to the point of okay, so how do we actually do gaming. 

And I hope that we, at inStremely, can be the answer to that.

Michael Sweeney: Excellent, super interesting insights there. Just a couple of quick questions there, you mentioned vstreamers and vtubers, is that right, what are they?

Wiktoria Wójcik: Yes, so you have a 2D or 3D avatar. In the case of 2D it’s most likely anime-like avatar, 3D can be 3D avatars, sometimes very human-like and sometimes just more out there. 

And this is basically streamers streaming as this avatar, of course, using their voice and the movement is tracked. 

But what viewers see on the stream is, of course, the gameplay, what’s happening, but the persona is just a drawing or just an avatar.

Michael Sweeney: Wow, so that’s, kind of, I guess, getting into the Metaverse world, or the virtual world as you said before, right?

Wiktoria Wójcik: I’d say yes and no in a sense that I always loved that the word that marketers love, so avatars, is never used by gamers. I don’t hear anybody saying oh, I want to dress my avatar up, like it’s not a word. 

But in a sense yes, I think we are getting more and more agreeable with the vision that our digital persona and a digital, let’s say, avatar is a good representation of who we are and we can be represented by that. We are getting just more and more adjusted that this can be true.

And this is why people don’t mind watching cute anime characters that also can get more fancy, be better dressed, etc., than a streamer every day could be. 

And on the other hand, for the streamers it’s just very easy to be a character, because you have a barrier between you and the viewers. You are acting as a character and you don’t always have to be you there. 

And when I was streaming, you are streaming for four hours a day, every day, at least four hours, and it’s very, very hard on you, especially as people are seeing you, commenting on your looks, commenting on what you do, how you do things, etc., and having this barrier of having an avatar, something that can be an act, it just lets you get more space. 

And in the long term, I think it’s just easier to stream in this way. 

So this is why people are watching vstreamers and I think it’s just very interesting, it’s fun. It would be very, very cringe to watch a girl be like hello everyone, I’m so cute. 

It’s very hard to act this way, but if I’m a cute character with bunny ears, maybe this can work, maybe I could do it.

Michael Sweeney: Yeah, perfect. You did a very good voice then as well, it’s very convincing.

Wiktoria Wójcik: You will never know if I’m a vstreamer, this is the point.

Michael Sweeney: I’ll have to look out for that voice.

Wiktoria Wójcik: I can be a businesswoman during the day and a bunny girl vstreamer during the night and nobody will know. And this is the appeal.

Michael Sweeney: A lot of appeal there, definitely. So just last question, you mentioned before about the word avatars mainly used by marketers, right. 

So what do vstreamers refer to as, do they simply just refer to them as their digital self?

Wiktoria Wójcik: There is a name, but I don’t remember, but usually it’s a character, like avatar is used in a technical term, but in a sense that people are talking about oh, every 13 year old girl has their own avatar and we use avatars in games like Fortnite. 

You don’t really talk about that, your skins for your character, you dress up, but it’s never, like, an avatar is a thing.

It’s just a joke, of course people will use it, I’m not saying that nobody uses it, but in a sense that I will hear this word more often on marketing conferences instead of in the game.

Michael Sweeney: Yeah, so just some differences between the lingo between the marketers and the people that are streaming the games, etc.

Wiktoria Wójcik: Yeah.

Michael Sweeney: Yeah, perfect, excellent. Wiktoria, that’s all the questions I had for today, was there anything else you wanted to add before we finish?

Wiktoria Wójcik: No, I think not. Maybe I will just leave you with a little thing to think about because gaming, of course, you might think: future, not the future, whatever. 

I’d say that right now, the next social media will be a game and already is because average TikTok viewer spends on TikTok around 90 minutes a day and an average Roblox player spends on Roblox average 150 minutes per day, and it’s also because they spend time with their friends there. 

So of course, you can miss out on games and don’t care about games now, but my kids for sure will not be using their phone to catch up with their friends. 

Most of the time, they will be in some kind of game and I believe that in a sense, in 10 years it’s gonna be very, very hard to distinguish what’s a game and what’s on the game, what’s a platform, what’s a movie, and what kind of entertainment part we are in. 

So even if it’s not your area, I would pay attention if I were you, because things, especially for the younger generations, are changing really fast and you’ll be surprised how big of a deal gaming is in being a part of their lives.

Michael Sweeney: Excellent way to finish the conversation, Wiktoria, some really great thoughts there. So, yeah, as I mentioned, that’s all the questions I have for today. 

If anyone wants to get in contact with inStreamly, I’ll leave a link to your website below in the description, but I think your website is just, right? I think it’s as simple as that. Yeah, so you can head over there and check it out.

Wiktoria Wójcik: Yeah, you can catch me also on LinkedIn. I share knowledge about gaming, gaming marketing, and just reaching Gen Z. 

So give me a follow on LinkedIn, it’s Wiktoria Wójcik, you will find the name in the title, so feel free to reach out to me if you ever have any questions about marketing to gamers.

Michael Sweeney: Perfect, excellent. I’ll leave a link as well to your LinkedIn profile as well, so people can click on that in the description as well. 

So yeah Wiktoria, thank you so much for that, that was a fantastic conversation. I learned a lot about the world of game streaming and livestreaming, so thank you so much for your time today.

Wiktoria Wójcik: Alright, thank you very much and have a good one.

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