The FIFA Ultimate QuaranTeam, the Virtual Grand National, the Cricketer Quarantine Cup… what next as we see the popularity of eSports – already expanding rapidly – rise beyond expectations? And it’s no wonder, as we yearn for the normality that is sitting down with a cold bevvy, putting our feet up and shouting our support and dismay at our television screens!
For advertisers and sponsors the power of digital could salvage their investment, delivering the engagement they invested in as many of us take to our nests to consume our much-needed dosage of entertainment. In their interview with Sport Business, Right Formula explore the opportunities that eSports deliver, stating that advertisers must be “smarter than ever” during COVID-19 to stay ahead of the curve and avoid their marketing plans falling to pieces.
It’s time to ask why more advertisers haven’t grasped the power of digital before now. With endless data insight, we agree with Right Formula that it is “cost effective, easily analysed and largely the way we are consuming most of our daily information”. eSports could be the answer for clubs to avoid owing advertisers refunds, meaning it could keep the whole sporting industry afloat as it comes face-to-face with a financial crisis, which could see it buckle at the knees.
It’s not only eSports that could deliver exposure for advertisers as club commercial teams see the returns of investing in their own platforms, finding power within the Club App and website to grant the impressions that their sponsors and partners were promised; to deliver the activations and drive the brand awareness they seek.
Not only does activated digital engagement provide an opportunity for the sporting industry to stay afloat, but it brings the traditional advertisers up to speed on what the future of marketing looks like in a digital world. There can be no doubt that the game has now changed and is unlikely to revert to where it was.
Our advice to advertisers and sports clubs? Go out and grasp the opportunity with both hands to learn, grow and most importantly, thrive. Use the current hiatus to test the water, learn and adapt, ultimately take a sneak peak at the world of tomorrow.