New to the sports world, and not even really considered sports, is eSports. eSports is the competition of numerous teams of players playing video games against each other. Although it is still somewhat new, high-level executives in the marketing field see enormous opportunities for growth.
Ken Ungar, the founder and president of his own sports marketing agency experienced an eSports event in person. He witnessed fans staying for over eight hours as they cheered on their favorite players. “I saw incredible fan passion and rooting interest that rivaled any sport that I’ve ever attended over the past 40 years, yet I saw very little commercial activity, sponsors, licensed merchandise sales, hospitality and realized there was a tremendous opportunity to take this sport to the next level.” With the sport being as big as it is already with virtually no real sponsors or advertising, the idea of having someone with knowledge in the field could bring eSports to a whole new level. Unger states that the demographic of eSports is perfect, as kids who play video games will continue to like doing so, and could carry into their adult lives. Universities have started to give some students scholarships for eSports activities. They hope that the way big sports like basketball and football are played and payed attention to will carry over to the eSports world.
Within the next few years, Ungar expects player’s salaries to increase, upgrades of venues, better broadcasting, and a larger fan base to be the result of the new sponsorships coming to the industry. To go along with branding and creating a fan base, teams having their designated “arenas”, or venues, could build their fan base by having locals get behind the team and have a true relationship and dedication to them.