4 Ways To Grow Your Minecraft Server
Starting a Minecraft server is easy, but actually growing it into something larger is the real struggle.
I am genuinely surprised at the number of people who give up on their Minecraft community as soon as they struggle to grow. Growing your community is one of the most difficult aspects of owning a Minecraft server, and it is one that you are going to have to put a considerable amount of time, energy, and (possibly) money into.
It cannot be an afterthought. It needs to be at the forefront of your focus.
But, it can be a bit difficult to figure out what to do in order to grow. There is a lot of contradicting and confusing information online, and most of it is written by hosting companies who don’t know anything about running a Minecraft community and just want to sell you a hosting plan.
Here at KastCraft, we are a community of Minecraft players who are here to help each other thrive and do what they truly enjoy. So, that's why I decided to write this article and help people pursue their passions of opening their own Minecraft server.
If you are looking for a fun, relaxing, and friendly server to play on while you are working on yours, come and check us out. You can find more information on our join page. We would love to have you!
1) Social Media.
Before spending large amounts of money on large advertising campaigns, see what you can do with free options first. There are a lot of free alternatives, that, with a bit of work, can help you to grow your community without spending a penny. These methods will require a bit more dedication and consistent work, but it will pay off if you put the time in.
Believe it or not, one of the best performing advertising methods for Minecraft communities is r/mcservers. This is a subreddit that allows you to advertise your Minecraft community to people who are looking to join servers. You can post it once a week, so I would completely recommend reposting it every single week. I have had TONS of joins through this subreddit, and it is one of the best places that I have found to advertise your server and attract players who are actually going to enjoy what you have created. It is straight and to the point, and allows players looking for a server to be connected with the exact type of community they are looking for.
When you think Minecraft players, you don’t often think of Instagram. But, Instagram is one of the most under-utilized social media platforms for Minecraft servers. All you have to do is post pictures of the stuff people build on your server, or post showcases of the cool features on your server, in a way that doesn't come across as an advertisement. If you are curious what I mean by this, you can check out the Instagram for our Minecraft server. Just make sure to post consistently and you will attract followers if your posts are good.
If you want to take it a step further, you can reach out to various Minecraft related Instagram pages and see if they would be interested in doing sponsored posts. They are usually very reasonably priced and are a good way to gain some more followers for your page. Expect to pay anywhere from $5-$30 per sponsored post depending on the size of the page.
I talk about this more in my article on how to maintain an active Minecraft server community, but running a Discord server is a good way to keep players engaged. You aren’t going to attract a ton of new players by simply creating a nice Discord server, but it could work to get your current players to invite their friends and get them involved in the community. Plus, it makes your community look more well-rounded and it isn’t that hard to set up.
Twitter is honestly a weird grey area and isn’t quite worth putting the effort into when it comes to growing your community. You are really only going to attract players who are already on your server and want to stay up to date with everything that is going on. If you want it to be a centralized place for all server news, go for it, but I wouldn’t try to use it to advertise your server.
2) Server list sites.
Sever list websites are one of the best places to attract players to your Minecraft server. These sites have a directory full of hundreds of Minecraft servers with various tags and categories. Players looking to join a server can then search by these categories to try and find ones that stand out. In theory, these sites are amazing.
But, unless you already have a lot of people on your server, you are going to have to shell out some money to get these to payoff.
Voting is found on pretty much every public Minecraft server ever created. It a system that allows players on your server to vote through each of these voting list sites, in exchange for in-game rewards. As your server gets more votes on these sites, it will rise in the rankings and get suggested to more people on the site. This is a good way to utilize your preexisting player count to attract new players.
Most server list sites have something known as sponsored slots. These are promoted servers that appear at the top of the homepage on the server list site. Basically, with this method, you can pay money for your server to appear near the top of the list for a set amount of time (usually around 1 month). These are extremely effective, but they are also extremely expensive. I would recommend checking out the various server list sites and exploring their sponsored options to see if any of them fall within your budget.
POPULAR SERVER LIST SITES:
3) Planet Minecraft
Planet Minecraft could technically be considered a server list site, but it is much different than that so I decided to make it into its own section. This website is basically a Minecraft oriented social media platform. You can post and share various builds, skins, texture packs, servers, and much more. But in this section, we are gonna talk about servers and builds.
Adding your server.
The first thing you are going to want to do is to add your server to the website. You can do this by creating an account and clicking the “post content” button at the top of the homepage. From here, you simply need to enter your server information, get some high-quality photos and a description, and you will be good to go.
Bumping your server.
If you go into your server settings, there is a section called “updates” in which you can enter information related to server content updates. Every time you add new content, you should post it in here because it will bump your server to the top of the list when players search by “recently updated”.
If you do not have new content, you can simply bump your server without adding content once every 24 hours.
Having a server on Planet Minecraft is helpful in and of itself, but to fully utilize the capabilities of the website, you should add builds for your server. To do this, go on your server page and click “submit server project”. This will allow you to submit information and pictures showcasing your server builds, boost your server score, and allow for more ways to be discovered.
To make this even better, get your community members to submit builds on the server through build competitions or something similar. These events are good for advertising but are also a good way to keep your community active and engaged.
4) Content Creators.
Another very effective way to help grow your Minecraft community, is by recruiting a good group of content creators. These can be people who make videos on YouTube or Twitch streamers; it is completely up to you. However, there are pros and cons to each of these so it is a good idea to take these into consideration.
I have personally found that it is better to recruit streamers than it is to recruit YouTubers. Streamers are usually much more down-to-earth and close-knit with their community, and their experiences are real. When using a YouTuber, the videos are going to be edited and less of a real experience on your server. You may not get as many users from a streamer, but the ones that you do get are going to be more dedicated to your server and will probably enjoy it more.
YouTubers can be a better option if you want to reach more people quicker. You can target YouTubers of various sizes and content types in order to appeal to a select audience. Simply reach out to them via email, Twitter, or Discord and ask them their rates. If they are unaware of a good rate to change, offer them a price of your own.
Make sure your offers are fair and that you are not trying to get something for an unreasonably cheap price. Being a YouTuber myself, I have come to realize that offering “exposure” or “shout-outs” is not going to do it for most people. You need to give something of value to the creator in order for them to have interest in your community.
Hopefully this article gave you some information that can help you to grow your very own Minecraft server! We are more than just a Minecraft server; we are a community. We are here, not only to try to get players on our server, but to also encourage people to do what they love and create servers of their own.
If you are interested in checking out our community, please join the server and meet some of our members! We would love to have you as a part of our community!
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We have been wanting to do this for quite a while and have finally been able to fit it into the budget due to the insane amount of support we had last month on the server. I just wanted to take the time to say thank you to everyone who made this possible.