By Zach Allen SYRACUSE, N.Y. (NCC News) – Many people find success when they combine their skills with what they are passionate about. That is exactly what Giulia Milana has done and is now reaping the benefits.
Giulia is a senior at Syracuse University who loves to talk to people. She also loves sports and video games. So when she was scheduled to have major surgery on her ear, she decided to get creative with how she spent her time.
“I didn’t want to just stay in bed and watch Netflix, I wanted to do something fun. Then this whole craze was Fortnite. And I downloaded it, I was really bad at first but after my surgery that was all I was doing.”
So she took up Fortnite to help her have a little fun. With Fortnite though, streaming your gameplay has taken off. There is a lot of money to be made through subscribers and advertisers. Tyler “Ninja” Blevins is one of the most popular streamers of Fortnite and he makes over $500,000 a month.
“I was watching this one girl stream and she had so many views, so many followers, so many subscribers and she was getting donation after donation but she wasn’t good at the game. I’m playing for hours a day I might as well stream, get out there, build a community and try and make something happen.”
So she did what any college student would do and decided to talk to her parents. They helped her invest in a brand new gaming chair, headset, webcam, and a few other items necessary to being a good streamer. She then joined Twitch.tv and got enough viewers to become an affiliated streamer.
But Giulia doesn’t believe in the power of having the best equipment or even being the best player around necessarily. She is a firm believer that you have to provide good content that people want to interact with in order to find success.
“I think I have the type of personality that people want to talk to and build this community. I interact with my followers, people who write in my chat. Every time someone writes something I acknowledge them. When I get a new follower I get a notification so I talk to them.”
It has been three months since she has taken up streaming and Giulia is starting to see a community grow around her, as she likes to call it. Over 30 people pay $5 a month to subscribe to her channel. Plus, she has nearly 400 followers on Twitch as well.
Even though some think that these streamers are simply playing video games, Giulia doesn’t take it lightly. This past weekend Giulia did a 12-hour stream on Friday and Saturday, both going from 2 p.m. to 2 a.m. By the end of the weekend, Giulia had amassed over 100 new followers.
Even with all this growth in just three months though, it is still tough convincing people that this is worth her time.
““The same way someone goes to the gym for hours a day and then go play a professional sports game, there are people who sit at their computer for hours and hours to try and master a game. Just like you look at chess, it’s all mental. So is Fortnite, and it’s a great deal of hand-eye coordination, too.”
Giulia is trying to do everything she can to gain attention and retain her viewers. Her latest move: hiring a graphic designer to create her own logo so she can make apparel to use for giveaways. So far she has sweatshirts and stickers, which she is not selling because right now it’s not about the money. Instead, it’s about making people happy and she knows that giving away a few stickers throughout a stream can make people happy.
Esports might not be Giulia’s end goal for a full-time job, but for right now she loves building a community around her. If you would like to check out Giulia’s page on Twitch, click here.