North American measurement and data analytics company Nielsen Sports & Entertainment has collaborated with European esports organisation Fnatic to publish The ROI of Esports whitepaper. 

Conducted by Nielsen in partnership with Fnatic, the whitepaper comprises results of a collaborative study concerning the return of investment (ROI) in esports.

Image credit: Fnatic

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The study reportedly analysed the ROI of sponsors in esports against four key areas, namely media exposure and reach, activation and engagement, brand impact and business impact. 

Key findings from the report showed that ROI for some of the leading esports organisations in the League of Legends European Championships (LEC) has more than doubled since 2019. Moreover, the whitepaper concluded that the Return on Media Investment (ROMI) for sponsoring esports organisations was higher than for some high-profile traditional sports events and teams. 

According to the report, the recent growth of ROI among esports organisations is a result of the maturing ecosystem and growing audience, as well as improvements on esports products. 

Phelan Hill, Head of Strategy and Consulting at Nielsen Sports and Entertainment, commented: “Esports is evolving. The best esports properties are now 24/7 multi-platform content businesses offering an unrivalled number of opportunities for sponsors to engage with a typically youthful audience that can have higher and more positive engagement rates than traditional sports properties. 

“Esports organisations such as Fnatic that have a strong and organic brand, which affiliate themselves with the biggest esports game titles and offer content opportunities through streamers and content creators, can truly deliver a positive ROI to sponsors.” 

The study also highlighted the growth of esports’ audience at 10-20 percent per year, with a 69 percent increase in consumption of live game streaming globally in the last year. Furthermore, the demand for sponsored live streaming audiences across platforms like Twitch increased upwards of 98 percent since 2020

According to the press release, The ROI of Esports whitepaper was designed to ‘ensure that brands and sponsors are better equipped to understand the potential investment returns from engaging with top-tier esports organisations and tournaments’.

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George Mead, Partnerships Director at Fnatic, stated: “This study proves what we at Fnatic already knew: that esports is pushing the boundaries of what partnerships entail for major brands, enabling all involved to generate mutual brand growth with leading ROI that continues to increase year-on-year. 

“Esports is the vehicle of today and tomorrow that is helping brands connect meaningfully to Gen Z and millennials in a dialect they understand to build their affinity with these generations.” 

Esports Insider says: Brands and investors are likely to find Nielsen’s study useful. The whitepaper not only includes insights regarding ROI of esports sponsorships but important data on esports audience demographics.

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