Earlier today, ESPN announced that it will broadcast the Paris Regional Finals for FIFA’s Ultimate Team Championship Series this Saturday, marking the first time the network has aired an eSports event on its flagship channel in the U.S. Previous eSports telecasts, such as the 2016 Street Fighter World Championship, were aired on ESPN2. In addition, the Championship Series will be available via live streams on Facebook, Twitch and YouTube Gaming.
What Brands Need To Do
In recent years, eSports has grown from a niche media platform into a massive global phenomenon that brands are starting to tap into to reach the tens of millions of fans around the world. Therefore, it should come as no surprise that a sports channel like ESPN is starting to incorporate eSports into its programming, despite the wide availability of live streams. Nevertheless, as media companies rush into the eSports space, brands gain new channels to reach the young, male-skewing eSports audience, brands, especially those seeking global recognition, need to start leveraging the massive reach of eSports events and platforms via sponsorships and ads.