How brands can successfully leverage the opportunities presented by esports and gaming

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A case study with Neosurf covering the strategy, tactics and principles of a brand making the successful transition to an endemic brand.

Esports and gaming are becoming increasingly attractive to many businesses, especially given the exponential growth in participation and viewership that has been accelerated by the current pandemic. Combine that with disruptions to traditional esports, an audience looking for more entertainment and escapism, and a lack of traditional ways for brands to connect with them, and esports is looking very attractive right now.

However, the challenge is relevant for many companies. Most savvy CMOs know you can’t just slap your logo on something and expect sales to pour in. So how do you capitalize on the opportunities in esports and gaming if you are a company new to the space? How do you connect with an audience that isn’t used to seeing you in their world?

This challenge boils down to a simple statement: How do you turn a non-endemic brand into an endemic brand?

Excel Esports Neosurf Cup Trophy
Photo credit: Neosurf

For those unfamiliar with these terms, an “endemic brand” is essentially a brand that is naturally integrated into the esports and gaming ecosystem. It “makes sense” to be present in this relatively young space. This term is traditionally used to describe technology, software, and publishing products and services involved in the gaming industry. The term “non-endemic brand” encompasses all brands that don’t usually come to mind when thinking of brands related to gaming and esports. This basically means everything else not included under the endemic umbrella.

When you, as a non-endemic brand, shape your approach to entering the sport and interacting with audiences in the way you can become an endemic brand, it forces you to think about what the audience thinks, feels, does, enjoys, Interacting with, ignoring, etc. This strategy is long-term and requires commitment, courage, and self-awareness. But it’s also a strategy that, when these metrics are applied, is beginning to deliver returns even in the short-term, including gains in soft metrics like brand awareness and exposure, as well as harder metrics like sales.

An example of a company currently on this journey is Neosurf.

Neosurf is a world-renowned payment solution that allows players to pay online without using a credit card and without revealing any personal information. Founded in 2004, the Neosurf model is now considered one of the most important means of payment worldwide.

As an organization, Neosurf is dedicated to delivering three key areas of value when it comes to collaborating with any online community.

K1ck eSports Club Neosurf
Image copyright: K1ck eSports Club

To protect. Pay. Game.

Protecting customers when they check out is an innate product and service quality that every online payment processor should offer. What sets Neosurf apart from its competitors is its commitment to amplifying the play portion of its brand.

Therefore, in approaching the sport, this goal of being known for play was paramount and Neosurf had the commitment and courage to chart its course and see this as a long-term strategy.

Neosurf also recognizes that collaborating with other experts in the esports space is the best way to gain a foothold. So it has a partnership with Guinevere capital which has served as a guide on her journey to becoming an endemic brand.

By partnering with Guinevere Capital, Neosurf was able to very quickly integrate the brand into established and prominent gaming organisations, provide original and groundbreaking activations, and power esports leagues and tournaments around the world.

So far, Neosurf has…

  • partnership with the Esports High Performance Center and its resident gaming organization the Terrible wolves develop and deliver original and engaging content for players and fans.
  • Started a new tournament for the LoL fan base and established the opening Neosurf Cup. It was hosted by Excel Esports at its home base of Twickenham. Some of Europe’s best casting talent, as well as fellow LEC Misfits, attended the tournament alongside Dire Wolves, who had traveled from Australia.
  • Become a partner of the leading eSports league in Australia and New Zealand, the Oceanic Pro League
  • Integrated with the digital and physical ecosystem for Excel and the EHPC, including all social media platforms and regular content and posts
  • Provision of new kits for all teams involved in the partnerships, including the inclusion of an in-game digital Dire Wolves kit in EA FIFA
  • worked with Riot games to set up an exclusive LoL 1,000+ competition for the fans
  • partnership with K1ck Esports Support teams in Poland and Portugal

The work Neosurf does with these organizations helps Neosurf flesh out its ambitions and strategies and establish a brand voice in the esports and gaming space.

Neosurf is in it for the long haul and continues to show its belief in esports and gaming and the organizations it has partnered with.

Importantly, the Neosurf brand is now quickly recognised, relevant and respected within the gaming community and is fast reaching its goal of becoming an endemic brand.

Disclaimer: This is a sponsored piece by Neosurf

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