When viewers are greeted by familiar names in chat, have their questions answered by you or your moderators, and see others enjoying the stream, it helps build bonds. And remember, chatting isn’t for everyone and that’s okay - if someone is just hanging out, don’t call them out, they may just like listening or they’re exploring the channel page.
Try and strike a balance between what you’re doing on stream and keeping tabs on chat. As more viewers join the channel and chat gets busier, some streamers find it helpful to use third party add ons that help highlight the most important chat messages. As a start, why not create chat rules and add them to your settings ? First time chatters will get an introduction to your community and the tone will be set.
How much you want to share with your community is up to you and there is no right way to guide conversation between chat and yourself. Keeping a conversation going is a skill many creators work hard to develop. Think of it as a conversation with friends, talk about current events, a cool podcast you listened to, or debate PUBG vs Fortnite. Check out some tips below from streamers on engaging their viewers.
“If your chat ever gets slow, pick a universal topic like TV, food, or video games. Try asking ‘have you seen any good movies lately?’ and see where it takes you.” - Annemunition
“Try to have fun and acknowledge as many people as you can, even a little attention can make a viewer’s day.” - hexy
“Engagement is the key word. Step 1 - Care about your chat. Step 2- Let your chat know that you care.” - LoadingReadyRun