TF1 Turns to Twitch to Reach Young Audiences

Tim Cross 12 March, 2024 

French broadcaster TF1 is turning to Amazon-owned live streaming platform Twitch in an effort to reach younger audiences, launching a Twitch-based version of its ‘Danse avec les Stars’ (Dancing with the Stars) format.

The broadcaster has already previously used young talent from social media, including Twitch, on its regular version of Danse avec les Stars to try to attract new, younger audiences to the show. Now the new version, ‘Danse avec les Stars d’Internet’, will exclusively feature social media celebrities. And the new show will be broadcast live on Twitch itself, alongside TF1’s new streaming platform TF1+.

TF1 has worked with Michou, a French Twitch streaming with 1.7 million followers on the platform, who previously competed in the mainstream version of the show, to develop the format. Episodes are being broadcast via Michou’s own channel, as opposed to TF1’s.

A tough place for big media

TF1 is far from the first established media company to attempt to leverage Twitch in order to reach audiences who have switched off of regular TV. It’s easy to see why the platform looks attractive to big media businesses. The biggest streamers pick up hundreds of thousands of viewers on (often daily) streams, having built dedicated audiences on Twitch. More than 70 percent of these viewers are between the ages of 18-34 – a demographic which is generally harder to find on traditional broadcast TV.

But Twitch has so far proven to be a much tougher nut for established media companies to crack than YouTube. Those who have tried to build an audience on Twitch have struggled, despite the fact that Twitch itself has been keen to facilitate them, even paying them to cover the costs of hosting live streamed content. Vice, Complex, and Rolling Stone all secured partnerships with Twitch, but all have now been terminated. And none of these companies made much of an impact – some of their most recent live streams only attracted a few hundred viewers.

Indeed TF1 itself has broadcast content on the platform before. Its channel ‘TF1_Officiel’ still hosts two old live streams, one of which has 3.2 thousand views, the other of which has 732.

This time however, TF1 is using a different tactic, working more actively alongside established Twitch creators rather than trying to build its own presence. The idea to have Michou host the new show seems to have been a smart one – the first broadcast picked up over 400,000 views when it went live.

There is a trade-off here of course, as Twitch benefits less directly from this viewership. The challenge will be moving the audience it finds with this new show onto TF1+.

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About the Author:

Tim Cross is Assistant Editor at VideoWeek.
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