What It's About
How to make $3,000/month playing video games!
Words of Wisdom
Brad didn’t know a thing about marketing when he started streaming, but he did know how to make people feel welcomed and appreciated. From the very beginning, when someone joined his stream, he would give them a quick shout out and invite them to ask questions if they had any.
This simple habit helped new viewers know that they were welcome to chat and participate, which led to Brad’s chatroom being highly active during his streams, which led to a community being built among Brad’s followers.
Over 30 subscribers have sent Brad games in the mail to give away on his stream. It’s made his channel a sort of grab-bag for followers who like to buy games for other followers. While it was completely unexpected, it’s opened yet another fun pathway to community participation.
Notes from Chris
For Brad Driscoll and millions of others, video games are a pathway not only for fun but also for finding friends and communities. The only thing was, these friendships and communities built over games couldn’t be transmitted across countries or continents—at least, not in the early years—so when Brad’s best friend and college roommate moved to Tokyo, he wasn’t sure how they were going to continue to connect. That is, until they discovered Twitch. By streaming his gaming on this new website under the name Dinky Dana, Brad could still interact with his friend all the way across the world—and they could even talk with only a twenty-second delay. Time zones were now an issue, but technology enabled their close friendship to survive. It also produced an unexpected side hustle. Brad began to notice random strangers subscribing to his channel and watching his streams. Lots of them. It was weird, he thought, but also…. pretty cool. He started paying attention to other streams and noticed some people appeared to be making pretty good money by offering premium subscriptions for anywhere from $2-10 per month. These people would host subscriber-only streams, giveaways, and all sorts of community activities. Brad wanted in on the streaming source of course. After all, the thought of making money while playing video games was… well… the dream. But to get to that point, he’d have to work for it. Around June of 2014, just three months after signing up for Twitch, Brad took on an enormous challenge: 365 days of streaming. He committed to at least three hours of streams per night for an entire year. His local friends weren’t exactly big fans of Brad being busy every night, but the Twitch community loved it. [What a challenge: some people exercise every day for a year or train for marathons. Brad thought: man, I’m going to do something harder: play those games whether I feel like it or not.] It was a difficult year, lots of hard work engaging with followers and creating streaming plans, and he almost broke the streak a few times. But by the end, Brad had increased his follower count from a humble 3,000 to over 30,000. This put him in the top 1,000 Twitch streamers at the time. At the height of his streaming days in 2015 and 2016, Brad was bringing in $3,000 per month from paying subscribers, which was actually more than he was making from his job at a cybersecurity company. Brad still streams several times per week and has a large community of gamers that tune in, but he’s slowed his streaming roll in the last year to build a new full-time business with his brother: a marketing agency. Not only that, but he’s still bringing in $1,000-3,000 per month in subscriptions per month. All those years training as a gamer have paid off in more than just extra lives.
MENTIONED IN THIS EPISODE:
- Twitch | Dinky Dana: Check out some of Brad's videos over on his Twitch page or over on YouTube!
- DinkyDana.com: Learn more about Brad and the games he plays over on his website
- Extra Life: An online grassroots movement working to save local kids through the power of play
- Lifewire | 7 Ways to Make Money Streaming Video Games on Twitch: All of the best ways to monetize your Twitch channel and make money
- SmartAsset | How to Make Money on Twitch: Another resource to help you make money using Twitch
- Gamer Levels Up Life With eBay Side Hustle: This production supervisor always loved buying video games—but it wasn’t until he stumbled upon some of his favorite games on eBay that he thought about selling them
- Engineer Makes $64,000 Selling Nerdy Playing Cards on Reddit: It started with a single Legend of Zelda playing card she drew for a friend and posted on Reddit—then it became a side hustle selling more than 6,400 full decks
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