October 27 2017


eSports, Passion Drivers, Thought Leadership

First study to uncover why fans care about esports

Octagon launches esports Passion Drivers®, the first-ever study to uncover and quantify why fans are passionate about esports and examine the motivating factors behind the rapid growth of esports fandom.

“Octagon’s new esports Passion Drivers® work is the first study to go beyond the demographics and scope of the esports industry, and truly uncover and quantify why fans care about esports,” said Simon Wardle, Octagon’s Chief Strategy Officer. “The esports and gaming landscape can be complicated for brands to navigate in an authentic and compelling way for fans. Our all-new Passion Drivers® study helps brands identify the best opportunities for creating emotional connections with esports fans, and how and where to engage with the fans that are most likely to support sponsoring brands.”

Octagon’s first-ever esports Passion Drivers® report includes:

  • 9 ESPORTS PASSION DRIVERS® FACTORS including drivers such as Leveling Up, Escapism, Trash Talk and Player Excitement that define why fans care about esports 

  • 4 ESPORTS PASSION DRIVERS® FAN TYPOLOGIES, each with a distinct emotional connection to esports, including Streaming Strategists, High Stakes Gamers, Competitive Commenters and The Obsessed

    • High Stakes Gamers, which account for nearly 30% of esports fans, are the most engaged fanbase and their passion is driven by competition and a sense of belonging within the esports community

    • The Obsessed fan types are spending about 8 hours/week on esports, sharing their love of esports with fellow experts and devoted fans

    • More than 40% of esports fans are classified as Streaming Strategists who are looking to improve their game, escape their analog lives and engage with the community

    • Competitive Commenters, which account for 15% of esports fans, spend less time per week consuming esports than the other fan types, and are the most likely to be cord-cutters or cord-nevers

For each fan typology, Octagon has ranked fan propensity to interact with sponsors and brands, and measured consumption habits across varied content platforms. The study also compares male and female esports fans, and examines how fans’ emotional connections differ by game preference.

The new research is an extension of Octagon’s ongoing Passion Drivers® research (first launched in 2005) that quantifies the emotional connections consumers have to sports and entertainment.  To date, Octagon has conducted our Passion Drivers® research in 19 countries across over thirty different sports, music and entertainment platforms.