BLOG | by Victor Gras

Everyone’s tipping esports. But what’s the view of traditional sports fans?

Everyone continues to tip esports to come out of this current period strongly. And there’s already some evidence to support that point of view – like rising audiences for the Counter-Strike – Global Offensive and League of Legends pro-leagues. But what does our daily data tell us?

Well, there’s no doubt that over the medium-term, Consideration for esports has risen and, in general, continues to rise. While Consideration has previously ticked along fairly steadily at around the 3% mark, it’s now markedly up.

That’s a process which began about a month into the Covid-19 outbreak.

As you can see from the chart, it’s NBA fans who are most likely to consider esports, with MLB fans next, followed closely by NHL and NFL fans.

And as you can also see, there’s some volatility there, with hockey fans being most likely to consider watching esports before the outbreak and baseball fans least likely. Those things have changed, perhaps as a result of the esports offerings aligned to their favourite sports.

Similar, but perhaps more dramatic, things are happening with esports Buzz too. Since mid-March, excitement around esports has grown pretty significantly, only to have tailed off since a peak for fans of all sports at the beginning of April. Why is that? Perhaps because for fans of traditional sports, esports offerings have failed to live up to expectation yet.

We’ll continue to look at esports as the weeks roll by – and also perhaps drill into specific esports properties too. For now, it looks like there is indeed growing appetite, some of it unfulfilled.

Photo © Sean Do

BLOG | by Victor Gras

Head of Client Services

Joining YouGov Sport in March 2018, Victor brings seven years of global sports sponsorship expertise. In his last role, he led Nielsen’s Market Intelligence activity across all US verticals, working with brands, rights holders and agency clients. He also worked previously with the New York Road Runners, where he helped TCS launch the title partnership of the NYC Marathon, as well as with the ASO, optimizing sponsorship strategies for the Tour de France and the Paris Marathon.