Today’s guest is Rebecca Longawa. Highly regarded as a maven in the esports industry, she a global speaker and founder of the esports consultancy firm, Happy Warrior.
Our discussion included monetization in esports, mentorship and networking, plus women in esports today.
Rebecca is located in Minneapolis, Minnesota which has a robust esports community in the upper mid-west part of the United States.
Rebecca’s experience began in promoting traditional sports with many major teams. Her work at Stadia Ventures, which also began in the world of traditional sports, introduced her to esports and she fell in love with the space.
There are both similarities and differences between traditional sports and esports. Rebecca is in a unique position to describe both from her extensive experience.
“Demographics are different: in esports the audience is younger but also they were born digital. They don’t like to be marketed to; they want to build relationships. With a traditional sports fan, they are okay with being marketed to. That’s the way it has always been done – product endorsement.”
She describes the learning curve when it comes to working with non-endemic brands in the esports world.
Storytelling is a central part of creating marketing success in esports. Rebecca works with both endemic and non-endemic brands to craft the right stories to tell.
‘If you consider what makes a streamer very successful, it is their ability to entertain and tell stories while they are playing video games.”
Rebecca describes in detail what an esports organization needs to do to present themselves to brands and agencies. It has to be more than just playing games. She describes the value, and difficulties, of creating authentic communities in esports. Her list of three things to consider are worth remembering.
In addition to her consulting work, Rebecca works on building the strategy for *gameHERs, a social media community that works with women and those who identify as women to connect and grow. She talks about the current status of women in esports and where she think things need to go in both the short-term and long-term future.
” *gameHERs connects women to jobs. Storytelling about women in this space so they can see someone who looks like them, doing something that they maybe didn’t even know it was a job. Giving women permission to go after these jobs.”
As an advisor at Stadia Ventures, you can sense Rebecca’s passion for working with founders in an accelerator program to create successful esports enterprises.
In closing, Rebecca describes the value of networking and how it has led to her own podcast.
“I always liked people. And solving problems. I can help people find their gaps.”
With over 20 years of experience in sports marketing and innovation, Rebecca is a master connector and networker. Highly regarded as a maven in the esports industry, she a global speaker and founder of the esports consultancy firm, Happy Warrior. Her client work includes helping pro esports teams monetize their organizations through brand partnerships and growth strategies and working with advertising and media agencies to bring their brand accounts into the esports ecosystem with authenticity and credibility.
This is a show about how to build an esports business from literally anywhere in the world where each week we showcase the journey of esports entrepreneurs and others to learn how they solved a particular problem that everyone will ultimately face.
In Season Two our theme is “Follow the Money”.
I am your host, Tom Leonard. I have a background in entertainment marketing. After working with many amazing esports entrepreneurs from emerging markets, they inspired me to create a show to tell their stories so that others can be motivated to create their own esports business. Gaming and esports can create jobs tackling the problem of global youth unemployment. Creating jobs from playing games. What could be better than that?
Thanks for listening to The Gamers Change Lives Podcast!
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