We’re going to discuss what alert system you should use as a new streamer on Twitch. Then, at the end of the video I’ll walk you through how to set up some on screen labels to display your latest stream supporters.
If you’re not familiar with alert or notification systems, they’re applications that allow you to display on screen events, which are generally when someone follows, subscribes to, tips, or hosts your Twitch channel. So in essence, they’re a way to show an on screen ‘thank you’ to the people that are supporting you as a streamer.
We’re going to cover a quick list of different systems you can use – and how they’d be beneficial to you, but before we do that I want to just say that on screen alerts should probably be the last of your concerns. As a new streamer there’s a lot that you could do to improve your broadcast – such as finding ways to improve audio and video quality, focusing on increasing any viewer interaction, or most importantly figuring out what makes streaming the most fun for you. If you focus on having a good time and becoming a member of the Twitch community, you’ll find streaming to be a lot more more rewarding than you will if you worry about growing a huge audience.
Anyways, alert systems can be used as tools to assist with viewer interaction, so let’s take a look at as many as we can.
We’ll start with Twitch Alerts. This application is probably the most popular one out there – and for one big reason – it’s easy to set up and understand. If I needed to set up a new stream and I could probably do it within 2 minutes, while using Twitch alerts. This application is mostly web based, but like a couple of the other choices that we have, it has a downloadable program that we can run on our computer and use to monitor the alerts from our viewers – the program, called Stream Labels, will also update text files that we can bring into OBS. These text files can be used as a static on screen label of who our recent follower was, and a host of other options.
Twitch Alerts also features an easy integration of on-screen Twitch chat, as well as their “event-list” which could basically replace an overlay. While you can customize your alerts a bit – a downside of Twitch alerts is that only their new features allow for direct CSS customization. In general – I’ve found it to be a bit difficult to make a lot of cool and custom ideas work in Twitch Alerts and the system feels just a bit dated. They’re also the subject of a bit of controversy at the moment – but, I don’t know the full details on that.
Let’s move on to another alert system that is quite new – Muxy.IO . This is my personal go-to alert system. I’ve been working with these applications for years now, and was impressed when I first tried out Muxy. Like almost all of the system we’ll talk about, Muxy does feature a dashboard with analytics, easy to set up basic alerts, a downloadable program called the ‘Ticker’ that will provide similar functions as Twitch Alerts. Muxy also makes it easy to set up alerts with Patreon and Gamewisp, as well as integration with Discord. They even allow connections to Twitch Alerts, Stream Tip, and NightBot. If some of these names don’t sound familiar, don’t worry – we’ll talk about them soon.
Unfortunately, the downside of Muxy is that has been reliability. As a new system alerts can sometimes take awhile to come through, and users have reported issues to where they’re not shown at all. I hope these are just growing pains – as I would love to see Muxy become popular.
Another popular option is StreamPro.IO – I actually made a full video about StreamPro – so if you’re interested, check that out to get the details. One thing that has changed since that video, is that StreamPro is now under the same company as Twitch Alerts. This makes a lot of sense to me, as I feel that StreamPro brings a lot to the table in terms of being current.
This app is more than just a notification system. It featuresan easy to use overlay system, to where you can add in different widgets, and customize them to your liking. Once you’re done – you can bring in your design to OBS or any streaming software via the browser source. So in essence, your overlay and alerts system is saved in the cloud. You can also work from pre-built templates which will allow you to get graphics added into your stream within minutes. Notable widgets are their twitter feed, straw poll, and simple to add Twitch chat.
StreamPro’s communication and updates seemed to fall off a bit – but I’m assuming that has to do with their new partnership with Twitch Alerts. I’m interested to see what new things they’ll bring to the table. Again, if you’d like a full overview of this system, check out the link to the video in the description below.
Another new system that I just haven’t had the time to fully experience and review is Gaming For Good. This platform originally began as a way for streamers to raise funds for charities, but has evolved into so much more. From what I’ve seen so far – it’s very quick and responsive, and easy to set up. A really cool part is that you can set a specific percentage of the tips that you earn to go to integrated charities such as Save the Children, or you can set the full amount to go to yourself. It also has a cool YouTube Jukebox that allows viewers to pay for songs to be played on your stream.
I wish I knew more about the system, but unfortunately I just haven’t had enough time to fully evaluate it.
So, as you can see – so far a lot of these systems work in similar ways. They’re fairly simple to set up and accomplish most of the same tasks.
I quickly want to mention StreamTip, before we walk through setting up our on screen labels and Twitch Chat. StreamTip is a simple to use Tip platform – it’s very basic and is perfect for someone that just wants the basic on screen labels of recent supporters. IIt’s created by NightDev, which is a company that makes a lot of great applications, such as NightBot and Better Twitch TV. They offer a couple of alert systems – but none on the level of what we’ve discussed so far.
Alright, so since Twitch Alerts is the most popular system out there – and shares a lot of the same features as everything else – let’s set it up very quickly. Now, I do want to mention that a lot of the concepts behind what we’re going to do will actually apply to each of these systems. Meaning if you can set up Twitch Alerts, you’d have no problem setting anything else up as well.
Let’s first log into Twitch Alerts and and go to the donation settings tab. Here, I can quickly link my paypal account to begin accepting donations or tips for my stream. We can configure a couple of options here if needed, but the most notable part of this section is the donation page. This is the page we will want to direct our viewers to if they’d like to support your channel. More on that in our next video. Anyways, with that setup let’s download their Stream Label application so that we can put our labels into OBS. Once the application is downloaded and installed – let’s launch it. The first thing we need to do is select an output directory. This is where all the text files will be stored, these files will contain the names of our latest followers, tippers, and much more. If we ever need to update this location, we can click change output directory at the top. It’s important to create a folder for these files to be stored in – since there will be a lot of them made. I’ll select my alerts folder on my desktop.
Next, let’s set up our labels in OBS. In my Gaming scene – I’ll add in a text source and call it latest follower. Let’s place it and size it before we link it to our new text files. I’ll just put in a name in the text box, to simulate a new follower. I’ll select a font and set my size to 26. Now I’ll just click and drag it into place and use the arrow keys for any fine adjustments if needed.
Once it’s placed where we’d like – we can link the appropriate text file. Let’s go back into this source’s properties and checkmark “Read from file”. Let’s hit browse and then navigate to where our alerts folder is. We’ll see a ton of different text files that will allow us to add different labels into our stream. In this case, I want to add in the most_recent_follower.txt file. We should see a appear if we have any recent followers.
We can now do the same thing to the other parts of our overlay as well. But let’s say I want to add a list of followers instead of just one person. For that I can change the text file to point to session_followers.txt . This will display multiple followers. I can go back into the StreamLabels app and click File Settings. Next, I’ll use the dropdown to find the settings for this file. We can see here that I can edit the template of how this file displays. I can choose the what comes before the entire list of names, or even specify what text before each name. I can set a seperator, which I’ll leave as a comma, and I can specify the item limit. I’ll leave this at default and go back to OBS. We’ll see that the list of names goes well into the next areas of my overlay, and even off my preview window. To fix this, I can simply apply a filter to this source. I’ll set up a scroll filter, give it a horizontal speed around 20, and then limit the width, which is sort of like cropping, to 380.
We’ll see that everything is looking a lot better now. We can repeat this process and use our knowledge of filters and the text source to make the rest of our overlay look how we’d like.
In a future video I’ll cover adding in the on-screen alerts, and in other videos I cover how to add a music ticker into OBS, so make sure to subscribe or watch thevideos in the description below. Let’s add in the last items we need to complete our overlay. I want to put Twitch chat to our In-between scene. To do this we can use Twitch Alert’s Chat box. Simply grab the URL listed towards the top, and then tweak any settings to how you would like them. I prefer to use the boxed version. After I hit save settings, let’s go back into OBS and add in a browser source and name it Twitch Chat. In the url I’ll paste the URL that I just copied from Twitch Alerts. I’ll set the width and height to an appropriate value – in this case I have a lot of vertical space to work with – so I’ll set it to 484 by 878px and hit okay. I won’t see anything yet since no one is talking in my chat. However, I can position the box where I’d like it in my scene and start spamming my chat to see if it’s working!
Okay, with that, you now should have the ability to create your own scenes and add in everyting you’d need. I want to mention two quick things. First, if you want to reuse the text sources across different scenes, don’t forget that the filters and properties of each source will carry over. So, it may be easier to add in separate sources, depending on your situation. Last, adding in the on screen pop up notifications work the same way as adding in Twitch Chat… you basically grab a URL, add it into OBS Studio, give it a width and height, and position it where you’d like. They even have buttons to hit to test to see if things are working.
I hope you find this video helpful in selecting the notification system that works for your stream. There’s a lot out there, even more than I covered today. I’d really like to hear in the comments below what notification system you’re using, or your thoughts on the ones we talked about in this video.
The Core OBS Studio Tutorials
- Introduction to our OBS Studio Tutorial Series
- OBS Studio Vs OBS Classic
- Installing and Setting Up Profiles In OBS Studio
- Best OBS Studio Settings
- In-depth look at OBS Studio Sources
- Using OBS Studio Filters
- Setting Up OBS Studio Scenes
- What Notification Should You Use With Twitch? (current post)
- Setting Up Your Twitch Account Before You Stream
- Streaming Live on Twitch and How to Improve Your Stream
- OBS Studio Updates – Alt Cropping, New Transitions, and Source Snapping