Data in esports is becoming a hot topic as more brands, investors, broadcasters and traditional sports teams move into the space. From the more traditional sports world there are established practices and benchmarks around customer and user data.

Sports teams understand who has bought a season ticket and whether they are a repeat purchaser. Some of that data may be shared with brands or partners enabling them to cross-reference with their own ecommerce purchases.

Investors know the value of data and that’s why many of the investments we see in the technology space are skewed towards the size of the userbase. Facebook is the perfect example of this as they secured sizeable investment before they started generating revenue.

In this article we’re going to give you 4 tips for how you can unlock hidden value from the data in esports. This doesn’t matter if you are a brand, an esports team, a traditional sports team expanding into the space or a platform provider.

Unlocking hidden value from data in esports

1. Have a centralised database and make sure data flows into it

The tip comes from our experience working with big ecommerce companies and brands. We’ve often had the challenge of trying to consolidate different sets of customer and user data. Examples include email lists being separate from ecommerce customer lists, or people who registered for tickets to an event being separate from people who created an account on your website.

Combining these different data sets will enable you to achieve what many marketers struggle with – a single customer view. A complete view of everything a customer has done and where.

For teams, this will help you understand which fans have attended multiple events or purchased multiple jerseys. If you are a brand work closely with the teams, streamers or event organisers you partner with. This will enable you to match any internal data with the data of your partners to understand if fans of a specific partner are purchasing more of your products.

2. Utilise tracking scripts
At a basic level tracking and analytics tools like Google Analytics are OK. However, it is possible to go deeper into the data and you should.

If you have an ecommerce store do you track the repeat visits of each user? Do you know when your most important fans come back and browse the new jersey you just launched? Have you seen a visitor who has visited 5 times but still not made a purchase and needs incentivising?

Having tracking scripts on your ecommerce site can help with all of these things. Mixpanel is one example of a tracking script we’ve used as you can tag specific user actions. This could be visiting a specific product page but not completing a purchase – it can all be tracked. This same tracking can be used on a website to understand which fans prefer different types of content.

3. Encourage fans to give you their data

A lot of people will be willing to provide their data if there is a suitable reason for them to do so. Facebook and Twitter only provide you with anonymous high-level metrics so it is important to capture data from your followers. This helps you understand who is actually following you on your social media accounts.

This can lead to a better understand of demographic information like age, sex and location for specific fans. If you are a team it will support your conversations with brands who are looking to target a specific group of people.

The simplest approach is to have fans complete a form to enter a giveaway but if you are a team or a brand you have other assets and opportunities. You could make it more appealing by encouraging fans to submit their data in exchange for a chance to win tickets to an event or a product launch.

4. Analyse the data to understand patterns

Is there a time of year when you have more repeat visits from fans? Is that because it coincides with the new league season starting or a public holiday? Doing an analysis of your data and traffic will help you identify patterns.

As a team these patterns can help you calculate the best time to make announcements, release new merchandise or boost your content output. As a Brand it is important to understand the peaks and troughs in your partner’s audience. This can help you calculate ROI from campaign activities and the best time to launch any campaigns.

Solving your data struggles

If you are struggling with the best ways to capture and use data then we encourage you to contact us. We’re happy to take some time to talk to you about your challenges and provide a free assessment of ways to improve.

Philip Wride