Facebook has been keen to build its gaming profile over the last couple of years and with its new Gaming Creator Pilot Program it looks to be headed the right way - primarily by looking to help influencers make a living from the platform.
The Facebook blog post sets out the new strategy without giving too many particulars. The key point is that it will support creators with tools that let them make a living streaming games, going onto to say that 'we’re actively exploring ways for fans to back their favorite gaming creators via payments during select livestreams on Facebook.com.'
It also promises to improve discovery for creators, not just across Facebook but also Instagram and Oculus. Technically it's upping its game too, with all creators in the program able to livestream at 1080p and 60fps - though this should really be rolled out globally as soon as possible.
'Build more meaningful and more engaged communities on Facebook than anywhere else'
The program will initially 'onboard dozens of talented gaming creators' and there's a sign-up button for anyone looking to take part. Facebook is also promising a bigger role for streamers on the program at events such as PAX East.
The grand aim of the program is to 'build more meaningful and more engaged communities on Facebook than anywhere else' which is a bold aim but one suitable for a platform of Facebook's size and reach.
With Twitch and YouTube already well-established and with Microsoft pushing Mixer heavily, Facebook needs to make up for lost ground. However, it has a gigantic potential audience, and it's free to promote its streamers to that audience; so with the right strategy it could make up that ground very quickly indeed.