How to Coach
The Meat + Potatoes
So you understand the website. But how do you become a good coach?
In this guide, we will help you learn how to develop your own coaching style.
We encourage coaches to experiment and build their own coaching styles. This guide is meant to be a starting point for developing your own style. Please feel free to iterate on it fit your own personality, style, and preferences.
Step 1: The Why
Before your start building out lesson plans, paths, or strategies, you need to first understand WHY this person is streaming. You can think of this as a streaming “purpose.”
Why do you stream?
Is he/she just doing this as a fun hobby? Or is going full-time crucial for some reason?
Does this person have a mission to his/her content? Or is he/she just trying things out?
Do your best to unpack questions like these when starting out with your client. It is important to get a full sense of background in terms of where they are coming from, and where they ultimately want to go.
Many streamers don’t think through this question, but it impacts so much of your content. Your answer can also change over time.
If your client doesn’t have an immediate answer to WHY, you should challenge him/her to work on it over your sessions. Make sure YOU also think through it!
Having a strong “why” is ultimately what will keep him/her streaming in the tough times. It could be as simple as “because it’s fun,” or as complex as “because other people depend on me.”
- I stream because I know my content can help others in hard times
- I stream because I want to build my expertise on social media platforms
- I stream because it’s fun
- I stream because I want to have VODs of my gameplay to look back at
- I stream because I am passionate about raising awareness for a cause
Note that while all of these reasons are technically valid, some are much more compelling than others. The more powerful the WHY, the more committed your client will be to the grind.
Step 2: The What
With the “why” in mind, now it’s time to start thinking through WHAT your client wants to be known for. You can think of this as a streaming “description,” and to some extent “brand.”
What are you known for?
How do others describe you/your stream?
Your client will probably have a tough time answering this question. It may be easier for you to take a look at their channel, and define their channel in your own words. Then, see how the client feels about that description
Like the WHY, the WHAT can evolve over time. But it is important to have a target in mind for the client to aim for. Even if they are not totally sure something is right, try to establish a WHAT that the client finds reasonable.
- I am known for specializing in Widowmaker gameplay in Overwatch (Kephrii)
- I am known for creative miniature painting streaming (GamerDadNC)
- I am known for my fast building skills and innovation in Fortnite (TSM Myth)
- I am known for production value, “being the best,” and 80s branding (DrDisRespect)
- I am known for streaming one specific game (AllFun, mshobo) (better for smaller games)
The more specific your WHAT, the better.
The more you narrow your focus for content, the more you will stand out from the crowd. There are a million Fortnite streamers, but not many Fortnite streamers who specialize in pistol-only-wins-on-a-console-playing-with-one-hand.
The key is finding the balance. You need a WHAT that is:
- Unique enough to stand out from the crowd
- In enough demand for you to hit your viewership goals
Again, the WHAT is probably something you should work on over time in sessions with your client. But, having a starting point is important to establish.
Step 3: The Where
The WHERE is similar to goal-setting, but not quite the same thing.
It comes down to this question:
Where do you want to get to?
This is more of an overall vision for the channel. Milestones you would like to reach based on numbers, accomplishments, or other measurements.
- I want to get partnered on Twitch
- I want to stream full-time
- I want to shoutcast an esports event
- I want to attend TwitchCon as a result of streaming income
- I want to reach 100k followers
Again, these may seem like goals, but they should be thought of as long-term visions. Goals that you set with clients will be much more actionable than these big achievements.
For bonus points, try to connect your client’s WHERE to their WHY.
Example – WHY does getting partnered on Twitch matter to him/her? What can he/she do with that achievement?
Step 4: Goal-Setting (The How)
Now we reach the most important step:
Establishing goals as a coach is crucial because it is ultimately how you will be judged. Therefore, it is important to know how to set the right kinds of goals.
The best goals are:
- Both long-term and short-term
- Challenging (but not impossible)
If you want more explanation on these points, please watch this video.
You will notice that these traits all relate to the WHY, WHAT, and WHERE. That is why establishing those points first is so important.
The goals you set for your client should be an attempted strategy to reach their milestones.
- Vision: “I want to get partnered on Twitch”
- Goal A: Stream on 12 different days in the next month
- Goal B: Stream for 25 hours in the next month
- Vision: “I want to reach 75 concurrent viewers”
- Sub-vision: Find a new way to increase viewership
- Goal A: stream 10 hours of Just Chatting each week
- Goal B: make one YouTube video each week
- Sub-vision: Find a new way to increase viewership
The biggest key when setting goals is to create goals that the client can self-accomplish. Instead of just setting a goal of “reach 75 viewers,” try to create an actionable strategy to reach that number. A client can’t magically make 75 viewers appear, but he/she can record a YouTube video that may bring in new viewers as a result.
If you are smart about creating goals like this, your client will feel much more fulfilled.
This is not a science. You will have to take an educated guess and use your own experiences to suggest strategies to your clients.
When creating a sub-goal, you have a variety of options to choose from. As you know, growing viewership on stream can happen in countless ways.
You can recommend that the client make YouTube videos, make Instagram content, stream longer, try a new game, or anything else you can think of.
What’s important is that you:
- Communicate HOW this goal might help the client move toward their vision (WHERE).
- Make sure the goal is self-driven, not dependant on things outside their control.
Also, note that the WHERE (where do I want to go?) is the long-term portion of the goal.
The HOW (how can I potentially get there?) is the short-term strategy.
Over time, you will find some strategies more successful than others. It may take practice to decide on what goals to assign clients to reach their visions. Even if goals are actionable, some goals won’t produce the results you hoped for.
Rinse and Repeat
This is the basic structure of how to build out a strategy for your clients.
- Discover WHY your client streams at all
- Define WHAT your client is (or will be) known for
- Discern WHERE your client wants to go with their content
- Decide HOW you think your client can get there.
If you are smart about setting goals, your client will have actionable goals to accomplish each week between sessions. He/she will also feel excited because the goals are meaningful (WHY), they are specific and controllable (HOW/WHAT), and they cover long & short term timelines (WHERE/HOW).
From here, it’s just a matter of learning more about your client over time, and developing new ideas to help them grow.
I hope this helped! Please don’t be afraid to reach out if you need assistance getting started with your lesson planning for your clients.