With eSports being inducted in the Asian Games in 2022 and the eSports ad industry worth breaching the billion mark by 2021, the future looks good for eSports.
However, female eSports players have been quite neglected by the eSports fraternity. According to researchers at PwC in the US, 22% of women said they're involved with eSports, compared to 18% of men, thus making it a women’s game.
Teams like Manchester City and Philadelphia 76ers have already launched eSports teams and are focused on improving women’s status in sports.
The Drum spoke to Team Dignitas women’s Counter Strike: Global Offensive player, Emmalee "Emuhleet" Garrido, who said: "There were hundreds of girls waiting for an opportunity to compete in eSports at an elite level. With the rise and increase in the number of all-female and coed tournament and leagues, more girls will have the opportunity to gain experience and participate in eSports in a highly competitive way. These new opportunities will spark incredible progress and improvement in their game play.”
While, Heather “sapphire” Garozzo, Team Dignitas women’s Counter Strike: Global Offensive's team manager, commented: "In the most recent female international qualifiers for Counter Strike: Global Offensive, over 70 teams from across the globe participated - a number that is nearly triple that of even a year ago. The number of competitive female teams has drastically increased, as support from organizations, sponsors and fans have rapidly heightened. As a former player, current team manager and broadcaster, it’s encouraging to watch younger generations of female gamers connect with and find success with this incredible sport.”
There is a huge, untapped female market segment out there just waiting to be monetised and the marketing mad men needs to figure out a plan to work this through. ESports organisers need to take a page out of UEFA’s book, who revealed in a recent survey that 'strengthening girls is strengthening sport.'
Co-chair at UN Sports and Peace Conference and host Leslie Hamer, said: “aSports is like advertising. Content is geared towards who your audience is. The real question is how do you build an audience interested in your content? Women have been ignored because the majority of the audience follows male Sports Stars. Make women gamers exciting and personal. Build the stardom and interest in Women's E Sports. The Women won the World Cup in Soccer in the USA. How did they do it? By showing them doing something exciting like Futsal."