Most gamers and Twitch users already have a Discord account either to communicate with each other or support streamers. Why should you have your own Discord server for your channel?
Creating your own Discord server for your branded channel will give your Twitch or Mixer followers a place to grow together. You will be able to communicate with your viewers, play games with your subscribers, and get valuable feedback from people who care about your success. Your stream’s Discord server can become the main hub of your community.
As Discord users can only be in a limited number of servers, it is important to make yours special so that they join and participate with other members frequently. Keep it active by posting frequent updates, memes, and announcements about your channel and brand.
While you can wait until you have a solid stream following before creating your server, having one from the beginning lets you easily connect with your first few viewers. Let them know that you are still building it and some will be eager to help.
If you don’t have a Discord account already, sign up for one. You don’t necessarily need to have your user name as your stream name as your name can be changed from server to server. That being said, we recommend that you use your brand’s name to make it easier for you to network with other streamers in the future. Use the same profile picture that you use on your streaming platform.
Create a New Server
You can create a new server by pressing the plus sign button on the left sidebar of the interface. If you have several servers already, scroll to the bottom to find it.
Once you press the button, a pop-up box will appear inviting you to either join a server or create one. Choose the create option to go to a screen that will allow you to enter your server’s details. Select your region and use your channel’s logo as the image.
Your server’s name can be simple such as “Your-Name’s Community” or you and your followers can come up with something unique. All of these details can be edited through settings later.
After you create your server, go into your settings and set up the verification levels and notification settings. We recommend changing this setting to “@mentions only” so that you won’t be constantly notified in the future.
As a streamer, you should enable streamer mode before inviting any viewers to your server. You can access this mode under “User Settings” then “Streamer Mode” toward the bottom of the list.
What Is Discord Streamer Mode? It is an inbuilt system that allows streamers to automatically hide their personal information and instant Discord invites. You also have the option to not hear or receive message notifications. You also get a purple bubble attached to your avatar to let people know you are streaming. This can be set up with keybinds, or programmed to automatically start when Xsplit or OBS are running on your computer. Essentially, the platform sets you up so that you can use it without unwanted issues or interruptions while you stream.
Add Streamer Bots
There are a few bots created specifically for streamers that are conveniently listed on Discord’s website. We recommend that streamers use Nightbot, Muxy, and Integration (either Twitch, Mixer, or YouTube) bot of the platform of your choice. These offer a variety of features that will help streamline your experience. These include:
- Auto-Sync Roles – You can set up specific channels in your discord to be viewed by your subs on either Twitch or Mixer (or Patreon subscribers). The bot manages the roles and gives them to those who are active subscribers to your stream channel. Having special sections in your Discord server for subs is an easy and great incentive for your viewers.
- Broadcasting Widgets – You can set up and customize your discord feed through both OBS and XSplit. You can easily see who is speaking in chat or view any channel’s chat directly on your stream.
- Moderate Your Discord Chat – Nightbot offers a way to auto-moderate your chat by blacklisting specific words or phrases and stopping spammed messages. It will also create a Discord role for you your Twitch mods.
- Upload Stats and Information – Muxy will upload stream summaries at the end of your broadcasts. It will also automatically let your server know when you go live on Twitch.
There are several features to each of these bots. Choose those that are in line with your channel and what you want for your community. In addition to these, both Nightbot and Muxy offer chatbots for your stream. To learn more, read our post, Best Chatbot for Twitch: Guide to Picking Your Little Helper.
There are other bots available through third parties. As you grow, you can add those that make sense for your server. Listen to your follower’s feedback and update your Discord for their needs.
Note: You can also set up Discord notifications with Facebook Gaming. This will alert your following whenever you go Live.
One of the great things about Discord is it allows you to assign roles to people. These roles allow giving some people permission to do extra tasks on the server or see into rooms hidden to others. You should create roles for those who will be your mods, streamers that you have networked with, your subscribers, followers, and more.
If you have found a unique name for your following or subscribers, carry it over to your Discord. You can customize the colors of each role to match your brand’s color scheme. Being consistent across platforms allows created continuity in your community. For help on personalizing your stream channel, read our guide, How to Build Your Personal Brand as a Streamer.
After you have set up the settings on your server, create channels for your community to use. We recommend that you start off with just a few and add them as you grow. You can add set permissions to each channel to only allow certain roles to view, interact, or write.
Have a selection of both text and voice channels. Even if you aren’t around, some members of your community may enjoy having a place to interact with each other.
Make sure to set aside channels for rules and announcements as well as private channels where you can work out future plans with your mods, admins, and fellow streamers. Aside from that, have an assortment of channels where your viewers and interact with you and each other in a variety of ways. Create a place where they can have fun so that they will return as often as they can.
Read 27 Channel Ideas for Your Stream’s Discord Server for our list to get you started.
Promote Your Server
Once your server is set up, it’s time to promote it. Create or download a panel for it and place it in your profile or description. Announce it periodically on stream and ask your viewer to join it.
A great way to have people join your server is through playing games with you while you broadcast. After they’ve joined, have them chat with you throughout the duration of the round. As a bonus, this is a great way to interact with your viewers and grow your community. For more ideas on how to attract your audience, read our article, Get 10 Times the Viewers: Advanced Guide to More Followers.
Invite your existing Discord friends to join and alert your social media. Having an already active community (even if it is small) will entice new members to stay and join in the fun.
Keep Them Coming Back
It isn’t enough to just build the server. You must nurture it to ensure that your community continues to interact there. There are a few things you can do to keep the server active for the duration of your stream’s career. They include the following:
- Interact with your viewers and take their feedback to heart. Be down to earth with them and see them as your friends and comrades. Show them that you appreciate their support in your streaming endeavor.
- Spend some time talking to them after your stream. Raid a channel at the end of your stream, then dip into your discord to discuss the streamer your hosting. Find out what they thought of your show and what they would like to see in future streams. Take notes.
- Play with your viewers on stream. Even if you only do this occasionally, people will stick around for the opportunity to appear on your broadcast.
- Frequently post memes, selfies, or pictures of your everyday life. Give them space to do the same.
Discord Nitro and Streaming
While you are able to create and use Discord servers for free, upgrading your account to Nitro will give you a few extra perks. These include the ability to use your emojis on all servers (not just your own) which is great for subtly promoting your personal brand. You will also be able to customize the discord tag used to identify your server.
Possibly most useful to streamers is the ability to live-broadcast a game at a high resolution specifically from Discord. This is a great way to reward your Discord members with bonus content. Everyone in the same voice channel as you will be able to view the stream.
While the Twitch Discord Bot will transfer your Twitch emotes to Discord for your subscribers to use, consider uploading additional emotes to your server. This generates user interaction. As artists find your community, some will want to create some for you. Make sure that they are in line with your values and appropriate for your brand.
Avoid spamming with the @everyone option too often. Don’t use it when you go live. While this is a useful tool that can be used sparingly, if it is used too much, members will either leave or mute your server.
If you often collaborate with other streamers, consider creating a joint server for all of you instead of individual servers. Not only will this cut down on your maintenance, but it will be more active as there will be more users. An added bonus is that many viewers will probably check out the listed channels and you can all grow together.
Remember that your Discord server is there for your community. Make sure to create value in it to keep them active and eagerly awaiting your next broadcast.