Online gaming was already booming in Asia-Pacific even before government-ordered lock downs – and now it’s hit a new high.

What was once a niche for geeks, the video games and e-sports sector has become a massive global industry and in Asia-Pacific alone it’s worth $71.4 billion a year – more than double the size of the US market, says Digimind, the social media monitoring and competitive intelligence company.

Its new report, Levelling Up Opportunities in Asia Pacific’s Gaming and eSports Industry on Social Media, reveals that a third of multinationals in APAC have invested in e-sports in the last year, and that 78% are planning to do the same.

Advertisers are hungry to score in this booming sector. But, the report warns, “Conquering the e-sports and gaming industry is not just about spawning your brand in the middle of a popular e-sports tournament like Overwatch or League of Legends.”

The key, Digimind says, is to understand this particular audience, what they’re interested in and, crucially, what they’re talking about. Researchers trawled social media and forums to identify key consumer trends. A distinctive feature of this sector, they found, is that gamers have conversations that are notable for being spontaneous, and also covering a wide spectrum of subcultures and fan groups.

Their analysis showed that in Asia-Pacific, mentions of ASUS, Razer and Corsair were responsible for nearly 50% of all user-generated content about hardware for gaming.

ASUS was the most popular single brand and was responsible for 21.6% of all mentions; most mentions about Razer concerned its mice and those about Corsair were about its memory hardware. Discussions about PCs and laptops focused on innovations that improved gaming performance. Some 29.3% of conversations mentioned performance and speed, and nearly 19% talked about thinness and lightness relating to keyboards, mice and mouse mats.

The report warns that while some brands’ investments have been successful in the sector, others, such as Cheez-It, have been less so, after it was criticised by gamers for being intrusive.

It suggests one way into the market for brands is to work with Key Opinion Leaders and popular gamers, many of whom have hundreds of thousands of followers.

Sourced from Digimind