Twitch is launching a livestreaming incubator program called The Collective to help train and support musicians on the platform, the company tells Billboard.
The program will group musicians into invite-only groups called collectives designed to help artists learn how to use and maximize the platform, with support from Twitch staff and industry partners including Amazon Music, United Masters, DistroKid, and TuneCore, among others.
“There’s a bunch of things that can make musicians successful on Twitch, but we’ve heard from a lot of musicians that it can be perceived to be difficult to get started on Twitch.” Tracy Chan, Twitch’s vp, head of music says in an interview with Billboard.
“We really wanted to form a program to help make sure that creators are successful on our service. We want to help artists learn that livestream playbook for music. This is a new format, we know there are certain behaviors, certain tools, certain software setups that really help musicians be successful.”
Collectives will be curated to group musicians by backgrounds, genres, and career stages, according to Twitch, and members will be guided by Twitch staff and mentors on how to grow and monetize their followings and improve their strategies through a series of workshops and direct support. Chan says there will be “dozens” of artists within a collective, and multiple collectives will be rolled out over the next year.
“We are looking for artists who are lean-forward on livestreaming, who really want to interact with their community,” Chan says. “The program itself will be multi-week and we have a curriculum which will walk through different pieces of what it takes for livestreaming. Everything from the basics of here’s a software setup, here’s the hardware setup, to different topics like how do you build community?”
“Once members graduate from the collective as their channels progress, as they start to build their audience, they’ll have lots of opportunities for discovery, promotion and live activations,” Chan says.
DistroKid, UnitedMasters, and TuneCore will partner with Twitch to identify and invite artists on their respective platforms to apply — the application process is open to all — and Amazon Music and Rolling Stone will feature select artists on their Twitch channels.
The move comes in the wake of Twitch moving to normalize its relations with the music industry after a contentious 2020 filled with takedown notices from labels and publishers. In September, the streaming platform reached a settlement over past music usage with the National Music Publishers’ Association (NMPA) and struck a deal with Warner Music Group to bring artist channels and original music programming to Twitch.