Audi has signed on as an official sponsor to Astralis, an award-winning Danish eSports team that specializes in Counter-Strike: Global Offensive. The team is set to compete next in the upcoming ELEAGUE Major in Atlanta, Georgia. As one of the biggest eSports tournaments of the year, ELEAGUE attracted record high volume of live viewers last year.
What Brands Need To Do
Audi’s sponsorship marks a significant entry into the eSports arena from auto brands, which has previously been mostly sponsored by CPG, consumer tech, and telecom brands. Last October, Snickers announced it has signed on as a sponsor of ELEAGUE tournament’s broadcast on TBS. Previously, early-adopting brands, such as Coca-Cola and Geico, have sponsored eSports events to reach its young-skewing Millennial audience. As competitive gaming continuously beat out viewership expectations and saw consistent growth over the past few years, brands, especially those seeking global recognition, need to start leveraging the massive reach of eSports events and platforms via sponsorships and ads.
Snickers is going after the young, male Millennials that make up a large part of the eSports audience as the chocolate bar-maker signs on to sponsor ELeague, the professional eSports league co-owned by Turner Broadcasting and talent agency WME/IMG. As a sponsor, Snickers will run ad spots during the broadcast of season two of ELeague on TBS, sponsor a live pre-game show, and name a post-game bloopers segment after its campaign slogan “You’re Not You When You Are Hungry.” Earlier this year, ELeague struck a deal to live stream its content on Twitch to reach a wider audience online.
What Brands Should Do
Over the past few years, eSports has grown from a nerdy niche into a media platform that attracts a massive audience and generates billions of dollars. The first season of ELeague brought in a huge audience that no brand should ignore, and Snickers is smart to sponsor the series to reach its target audience. Previously, early-adopting brands such as Coca-Cola and Geico have been sponsoring eSports events to reach its young, male-skewing audience who typically shun traditional ads. Therefore, now is the time for brands to include video game streaming and eSports as part of the media strategy via relevant sponsorships.
In the beginning of July, reports surfaced that Twitter was in talks with Turner Broadcasting for the live-streaming rights of some of its eSports content. Now, Twitter announced that it has struck a partnership deal with Turner to live broadcast the semi-final and final games of ELEAGUE’s tournament for Counter-Strike: Global Offensive this weekend, marking the first time Twitter has branched out into the eSports territory that is typically dominated by Twitch.
What Brands Need To Do
ELEAGUE is a professional eSports league co-owned by Turner Broadcasting and talent agency WME/IMG that started this May. Its broadcast on Turner-owned TBS scored 509,000 total viewers during its first primetime telecast and has since consistently brought in a new audience to Turner network throughout its first season. Now by inking a deal with Twitter, Turner is looking to further extend the reach of its eSports content.
In the past few years, the competitive gaming industry, which attracts a massive audience and generates billions of dollars, has quickly grown into a media opportunity that brands should not ignore. Some early-adopting brands, such as Coca-Cola and Geico, have been sponsoring eSports events to reach its young, male-skewing audience. More brands should consider leveraging the massive reach of eSports events to reach consumers via sponsorships or, in this case, Twitter ads.
ELEAGUE, the professional eSports league co-owned by Turner Broadcasting and talent agency WME/IMG, enjoyed a successful opening week. The new eSports league’s tournament, which started on May 24, has generated 150 million gross minutes of video consumption and garnered over 710 million impressions on Twitter so far. We wrote about ELEAGUE’s live-streaming deal with Twitch last week, and ELEAGUE has consistently ranked as the top channel on Twitch since launch, with an additional 3.6 million video views from its Facebook Page. The league’s broadcast on Turner-owned TBS channel averaged 509,000 total viewers during its first primetime telecast, a respectable number for a basic cable channel on a Friday night.
What Brands Need To Do
The impressive audience that ELEAGUE delivered during its opening week shows the vast potential of the competitive gaming industry, which has quickly grown into a media opportunity that attracts a massive audience and generates billions of dollars in recent years. Some early-adopting brands, such as Coca-Cola and Geico, have been sponsoring eSports events to reach its young, male-skewing audience. Therefore, brands should consider leveraging the massive reach of eSports events to reach consumers via sponsorships and ads.
Header image is a promotional image courtesy of e-league.com