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Getting serious about esports Identifying off-season digital engagement opportunities for sports

Report by Alistair Taylor
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The 20,000 Foot View:             has expedited the need for rights holders and teams to generate digital engagement beyond the pure play live broadcast. Games and esports became big attention economy winners during the early stages of the pandemic and first lockdown. Rights holders desperate to maintain connectivity with fans looked to esports to drive engagement and maintain relevance. The pandemic has acted as a catalyst, forcing rights holders to adapt to evolving digital consumption habits. Non-live sporting formats present unique revenue and engagement opportunities, and are currently under-utilised. Esports provide rights holders the potential for year-round connectivity.

Key Insights

  • Esports is            a sub-segment of the wider            opportunity open to rights holders
  • Games offer            holders a more effective medium            which to engage with an            less inclined to linear consumption
  • In                       year            were ten times more likely            watch esports than            year olds,                       percentage points more likely to            games videos respectively
  • Currently, only            soccer does a virtual game’s            have high penetration, with            of            fans playing EA’s FIFA
  • Off-season windows            offer lucrative periods to generate,            and drive engagement with fans            games initiatives such as licensing            esports tournaments

Companies and brands mentioned in this report: Arizona Cardinals, Electronic Arts, Endeavor, Epic Games, FIFA, Fortnite, Fox Sports, Fox, IMG, iRacing, League of Legends, Madden NFL, Momentum, Munster, Nascar, New York Giants, NFL, Pizza Hut, R/GA, Rocket League, Super Bowl, Verizon, Yahoo!

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