Esports has made its way into the mainstream in recent years, evolving from a narrow niche to an expansive industry. It has served both as a form of entertainment and as a means of moneymaking. While existing as a subset of the world of sports, it has become a million-dollar industry in its own right.
Contributory to the industry’s growth is the support from mainstream personalities like Drake, Michael Jordan, and Marshmello. In addition, some media outlets, like the giant sports channel ESPN, have been covering esports tournaments, thereby reaching more audiences. This popularity, coinciding with the need to stay indoors to prevent further spread of the coronavirus, makes it, along with virtual sports, the better choice among sports bettors. But do take note of the differences between esports and virtual sports.
Affiliate Marketing Strategist Lee-Ann Johnstone told BestBitcoinCasino.com:
“I have to say I’m loving esports right now. I have been immersed in it for a while now and I think it’s on an upward trend.”
The booming esports ecosystem seems unstoppable in its drive to greater prominence. Many esports business analysts predict that the industry will hit the $1 billion-dollar mark in revenue this year. This target is more likely to be reached as there is a nonstop increase esports viewership. This boom is largely credited to computer games like League of Legends, Dota 2, and Counter-Strike: Global Offensive, as well as new esport titles like Valorant. As the esports industry continued to grow, other sports organizations have also entered the market, allowing players to watch their favorite athletes in NBA, NASCAR and Formula 1 in esports.
The Esports Ecosystem predicts that the niche’s fan base will grow at an average rate of nine percent annually starting this year up to 2023. This prediction is largely based on the industry’s record of 160 million, 192 million, and 215 million audience counts in 2016, 2017, and 2018.
Additional factors affecting the audience growth include increased awareness about esports among people brought about by the ease of access to internet connection and availability of free online streaming across different platforms like Facebook, YouTube, and Twitch.
With a continuously growing online gaming audience, brands from various industries see esports as an opportunity to tap the engaged market. In 2018, investments in esports from capitalists and big private equity companies reached as high as $4.5 billion. Popular brands like Nike, Honda, and Mastercard have joined the esports circle as sponsors of professional gamers and esports events, hoping to capture the niche’s big audience for revenues.
Advertisements of products and brands running on mobile, PC, and console games even count as money invested in the esports industry. These ads remain as a source of revenue by the esports games themselves, and the profit here is expected to rise in the coming years as more companies include the esports platforms among their target venues for ad placements.
The esports industry, however, is one of the industries that got hit by the deadly coronavirus pandemic. But iGaming companies have taken steps to ensure the safety and health of their staff and customers.
Blockchain and Gaming
Another interesting prediction is the rise of blockchain esports. Games based on blockchain, a technology now also used in online casinos, are gradually making their way into the mainstream. But reaching a level of popularity like that of Overwatch, Fortnite, and League of Legends may still take blockchain games quite some time because of the steep learning curve for the distributed-ledger tech.
Kyte Director Alan Aldren told BestBitcoinCasino.com:
“We are seeing suppliers now specialize in esports content feeds, software being designed specifically for esports betting, and customers focused on esports betting. The younger generation would be the main customers and also players!! It’s the future of online betting”
But as more esports enthusiasts get to know how beneficial blockchain can be in gaming, they will start patronizing competitive gaming experience owed to the public ledger. Among the features highlighted by blockchain tech in the field of gaming is the prevention cheating in esports. A perfect example of a blockchain game now flaunting this feature is CryptoFights.