“Alright we’re gonna take a left turn here. A real left turn.” “Almost like a U-Turn and then another U-Turn.” “Competitive video games.” “And I’m laughing because, I can’t think of anything less interesting.” “So this is basically going to be a league watching people play video games.” “Esports.” “Can it truly be a spectator sport?” “It’s for booger eaters.” “Aw no one wants to watch people play video games, that’s so boring.” “It’s hard to imagine 36 million tuning in to watch this?” “With cash prizes going into the millions.” “League’s World Championship game with a 2 million dollar purse.” “The lucrative worlds of professional sports and competitive video gaming are beginning to merge.” “We’re looking at multi billions of dollars in just the next few years.” “There’s a lot of money to be had there.” “It has created this international audience and is a worldwide technological sports explosion”.
One point five billion. That’s the dollar estimate that the esports industry was valued at for 2017. It’s a big number and probably a surreal reality for those of us who saw esports grow from what it was five, ten years ago or even further back. (Casting) But that number pales in comparison to the industries that have recently dipped their toes into esports, or conversely made a big splash like the NBA. The Golden State Warriors, the Cleveland Cavaliers and the Houston Rockets have entered into the NA LCS, yet each of those teams by themselves are worth as much as the entire esports industry put together. With esports being such a small drop in the bucket for these teams, why did they bother getting into esports? Chances are, it’s because of someone like you. You, yes you, the average esports fan. You may not know it but your time is valuable, to the point where companies are spending billions of dollars trying to grab your attention. And many already have. Ask yourself: Coke or Pepsi? Adidas or Nike? Chances are you have an opinion on the matter. And while part of that is due to your first-hand opinions on their products, “I feel like I can already tell by the shape that this is Pepsi.” you’ve likely been influenced by their various forms of marketing. That is, if they’ve been able to reach you.
So much interest into esports comes from a generation that is so resistant to conventional advertisements. This is partly because of the TV alternatives like YouTube and Twitch, but even when ads are shown on those platforms, you’ve likely avoided them through the use of ad-blockers. But just because you haven’t been influenced to spend your time and money, doesn’t mean you’re not spending it. According to a report from Nielsen’s esports division, which surveyed 4,000 esports fans from the U.S., UK, France and Germany aged 13-40, the esports fan spends about 17% of their leisure time on esports. That’s almost a fifth of your free time spent on esports, a lot of time spent away from conventional ads. Nielsen also says that 61% of esports fans live with three-plus people and make liberal use of social media.