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Article
Publication date: 17 May 2022

Amir Zaib Abbasi

The present study aims to specify, estimate, and validate the composite formative model of consumer eSports engagement (CeSE) through utilizing the composite confirmatory…

Abstract

Purpose

The present study aims to specify, estimate, and validate the composite formative model of consumer eSports engagement (CeSE) through utilizing the composite confirmatory analysis (CCA) methodological approach.

Design/methodology/approach

To validate the composite model of CeSE, we collected the data using the Mturk online tool from eSports gamers located in European countries. The partial least squares based structural equation modelling (PLS-SEM) approach was employed using SmartPLS to conduct CCA analyses.

Findings

Using CCA, the authors first evaluated the reflective constructs (three first-order dimensions comprising cognitive, affective, and activation) and found reliable and valid reflective constructs. The authors then proceeded to assess the composite formative model of CeSE at higher-order level and resulted that CeSE is a valid composite model. Besides, the nomological network of CeSE with technology acceptance variables (e.g. behavioral intention and usage behavioral were estimated and found significant results).

Originality/value

This study contributes to consumer engagement literature in many directions. First, this study applies consumer engagement scale in the eSports context (i.e. eSports game brands). Second, this study notably specifies, estimates, and validates CeSE as composite model comprising cognitive, affective, and activation factors as first-order reflective constructs and CeSE as second/higher-order formative construct. Third, this study applies CCA guidelines to establish the CeSE as a composite formative measurement model and make significant methodology contribution. Fourth, this study extends the TAM model via studying CeSE as an important determinant of behavioral intention to play eSports games, which in turn impacts on eSports gaming/usage behavior.

Details

EuroMed Journal of Business, vol. ahead-of-print no. ahead-of-print
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 1450-2194

Keywords

Article
Publication date: 6 June 2022

Julia Rietz and Kirstin Hallmann

Esports is rapidly growing in popularity and viewership. The study's purpose was threefold: (1) to provide a systematic review and synthesis of esports spectatorship…

Abstract

Purpose

Esports is rapidly growing in popularity and viewership. The study's purpose was threefold: (1) to provide a systematic review and synthesis of esports spectatorship research. (2) to provide a reference for the psychology of consumer behavior in esports live streaming and esports event attendance. (3) to deliver a clear picture of the factors that impact consumer behavior in esports online and on-site consumption.

Design/methodology/approach

The study systematically reviews motivational aspects of online and on-site spectatorship using the Preferred Reporting Items for Systematic Review and Meta-Analysis Protocols (PRISMA). SCOPUS and Google Scholar were selected as social science databases. Twenty-five papers met the inclusion criteria: (1) published between 2000 and 2022, (2) empirical investigation, (3) focus on online and/or on-site esports spectatorship/events. Five papers implemented randomization to assess common method bias.

Findings

Twenty-five papers qualified for subsequent analysis. The papers were mostly quantitative. They included a theoretical framework and investigated online esports spectatorship. Significant antecedents for motivation to watch esports online and/or on-site were fanship, tension release, entertainment, escaping everyday life and unique features like chat and direct communication. No consensus was found concerning similarities or differences between online and on-site esports spectatorship and traditional sports spectatorship.

Originality/value

This research contributed to a new theoretical, methodological and practical agenda. A more comparative approach analyzing contextual, structural and demographic cues could lead to a holistic picture of esports spectator motivation.

Details

International Journal of Sports Marketing and Sponsorship, vol. ahead-of-print no. ahead-of-print
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 1464-6668

Keywords

Article
Publication date: 23 December 2021

Reinhard E. Kunz, Alexander Roth and James P. Santomier

Electronic Sports (eSports) is an emerging sector of the sports and entertainment industry experiencing an accelerated increase in consumer and sponsor demand. This paper…

Abstract

Purpose

Electronic Sports (eSports) is an emerging sector of the sports and entertainment industry experiencing an accelerated increase in consumer and sponsor demand. This paper aims to study selected cases of eSports service ecosystems, to identify similarities and differences and to understand the different roles, relationships and multiple interactions of actors involved in value co-creation processes.

Design/methodology/approach

This empirical paper follows the service-dominant logic to highlight value creation. Based on the sport value framework, an organizing logic for the actors in sports-related ecosystems to exchange service and co-create value, the authors apply the conceptualization of an eSports service ecosystem framework in which actors create value through their interactions. A case study approach was applied to qualitatively describe two cases of value co-creation by multiple actors during three eSports events. Case study 1a is the 2019 League of Legends World Championship Finals in Paris. Case study 1b is the 2020 League of Legends World Championship Finals in Shanghai. Case study 2 is the BLAST Premier Counter-Strike: Global Offensive Global Final 2020, which was entirely virtual.

Findings

The outcome is an empirically investigated conceptual framework of multiple actors co-creating value within a service ecosystem in eSports. The insights of the cases explain how actors interact with each other and co-create value during events in eSports ecosystems. The cases illustrate interactions in the context of eSports where the actors are connected within ecosystems. This enables further development of a value co-creation concept and a better understanding of value co-creation in eSports.

Originality/value

This study contributes to research by explicating a theoretically grounded framework for eSports service ecosystems based on empirical evidence. This research extends the scope of value co-creation beyond the firm–customer dyad to a service ecosystem in eSports, demonstrating the dynamic interactions of multiple actors.

Details

Sport, Business and Management: An International Journal, vol. 12 no. 1
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 2042-678X

Keywords

Article
Publication date: 2 December 2021

Bruno Duarte Abreu Freitas, Ruth Sofia Contreras-Espinosa and Pedro Álvaro Pereira Correia

This research aims to identify how important it is that brands incorporate relevant-added value into their esports sponsorships.

Abstract

Purpose

This research aims to identify how important it is that brands incorporate relevant-added value into their esports sponsorships.

Design/methodology/approach

This exploratory research applied a convergent-parallel mixed method with equal status. Data were collected by interviewing 22 experts in esports sponsorships and having 5,638 esports fans fill out an online survey. SPSS 25 was used to analyze quantitative data and NVIVO 10 to process qualitative data. Each dataset was analyzed separately and then compared with both having the same level of importance.

Findings

The results revealed that all experts considered the creation of relevant-added value as an essential strategy for successful esports sponsorships and the large majority of fans want sponsors to apply this tactic. Interestingly, while the experts mostly emphasized ways to directly benefit the fan-base, the fans prefer that sponsors focus on directly supporting the esports industry.

Practical implications

Brands should incorporate relevant-added value into their esports sponsorships as it greatly decreases fan resistance to the promotional message, catches the fans' attention and engagement much more easily, has a much higher probability of leading to high positive return on investments (ROIs) and makes for a much more cost-effective investment.

Originality/value

The field of esports sponsorships has received little academic attention and the results are highly significant and relevant for all current and potential esports sponsors looking to increase the effectiveness of their esports sponsorships.

Details

Journal of Contemporary Marketing Science, vol. 4 no. 3
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 2516-7480

Keywords

Article
Publication date: 7 December 2021

Dishant Gupta, Harsh Sharma and Manali Gupta

Esports has been emerging as a multi-billion dollar industry by attracting players, viewers, advertisers and investors across the globe. Even though there are plenty of…

Abstract

Purpose

Esports has been emerging as a multi-billion dollar industry by attracting players, viewers, advertisers and investors across the globe. Even though there are plenty of professional titles present, only a few have been considered mainstream due to lack of formal governance mechanisms, presence of corruption and cheating mechanisms. “Doping” is one such practice where the players try to gain unfair advantage over their competitors, causing major hindrance in esports development. This qualitative study would draw insights from their perceptions about different doping mechanisms and possible recommendations to curb them.

Design/methodology/approach

This study has analyzed the semi-structured interviews of selected esports professionals to draw insights from their perceptions about different doping mechanisms and possible recommendations to curb them. This qualitative study would explore the content of their interviews for extracting relevant themes and subthemes.

Findings

The findings of this study have made significant contributions to deeply lacking literature about the esports industry and barriers it faces in order to be considered as a legitimate sport. The study has extracted contemporary and new emerging themes about the rising trends in the industry and their impact on society and the way we see sports as a whole. Moreover, this study dwells upon the rampant drug abuse persisting in this industry and how it offers itself as a barrier to the legitimization of esports as a viable global industry.

Originality/value

This study provides an on-ground reality reports on esports and various malpractices rampant in the industry by conducting interviews with various industry professionals and analyzing them through a thematic analysis method using an inductive approach.

Details

International Journal of Sports Marketing and Sponsorship, vol. 23 no. 3
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 1464-6668

Keywords

Article
Publication date: 13 August 2021

Wooyoung (William) Jang, Kevin K. Byon, Antonio Williams and Paul M. Pedersen

While each genre and gender has been revealed as significant moderators for esports gameplay intention, exploring the interaction effects between genre and gender could…

Abstract

Purpose

While each genre and gender has been revealed as significant moderators for esports gameplay intention, exploring the interaction effects between genre and gender could broaden our understanding of the drivers’ relative effects on esports gameplay intention. Thus, the purpose of this study is to examine the interaction effects of gender and genre in the relationship between esports gameplay intention and its drivers (i.e. hedonic motivation, habit, price value, effort expectancy, social influence and flow).

Design/methodology/approach

The hypothesized model was examined using data from a sample (N = 1,194). For the purposes of data analysis, confirmatory factor analysis and structural equation modeling were used to examine the hypothesized model. Then, a series of structural invariance tests were conducted to compare the interrelationship between the six determinants and esports gameplay for the six-group model.

Findings

The results of the six-group model comparison indicated that the interaction between gender and genre moderates the relationship between drivers and esports gameplay intention. In particular, the following moderation effects were observed: (1) “social influence-esports gameplay intention” between “male-physical enactment” and “female-physical enactment”; (2) “habit-esports gameplay intention” and (3) “effort expectancy-esports gameplay intention” between “female-imagination” and “female-physical enactment”; (4) “hedonic motivation-esports gameplay intention” and (5) “effort expectancy-esports gameplay intention” between “female-physical enactment” and “female-sport simulation.”

Originality/value

The findings of this current study contributed to clarifying the genre and gender effects in esports gameplay intention and thus the extension of the Esports Consumption (ESC) model (Jang et al., 2020a) and the technology adoption literature. Since the ESC model grounded the Unified Theory of Acceptance and Use of Technology 2 (UTAUT2), the improvement of the ESC model extended UTAUT2. In consumer behavior research in the esports context, this current study contributed to the extension of UTAUT2 on the new moderating mechanisms by adding the interaction between gender and esports game genre.

Details

Sport, Business and Management: An International Journal, vol. 11 no. 5
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 2042-678X

Keywords

Article
Publication date: 25 December 2020

Sarah J. Kelly and Dymphna Van der Leij

The purpose of this paper is to examine the impact of alcohol sponsorship-linked advertising through esports upon young gaming audiences and how gaming behaviours affect…

Abstract

Purpose

The purpose of this paper is to examine the impact of alcohol sponsorship-linked advertising through esports upon young gaming audiences and how gaming behaviours affect advertising response.

Design/methodology/approach

A cross-sectional survey study was employed to examine the prevalence and nature of alcohol advertising in esports, and the impact of esports participation upon young audiences' consumption and preferences concerning alcohol. Survey data were collected from 976 young Australian gamers aged between 16 and 34 years (58.9% male) using online questionnaires.

Findings

Results revealed a vulnerability to alcohol sponsorship and advertising among 25 to 34-year-old and heavy gamer cohorts. As predicted, heavy gamers were more receptive to alcohol advertising in terms of awareness, preference and consumption while gaming than casual gamers.

Practical implications

This research advances theories of consumer behaviour and advertising exposure situated in a new landscape of converging virtual and real experiential marketing. It also provides much-needed evidence to guide marketing strategy to the next-generation audiences and regulation of new and burgeoning digital platforms. Our research also highlights a need for policy to address the burgeoning, largely unregulated nature of online gaming.

Originality/value

This research provides the first empirical evidence of the impacts of alcohol-linked sponsorship in esports upon young playing and streaming audiences. It informs marketing strategy and policy in relation to the rapidly growing, potentially vulnerable online competitive gaming audience.

Details

Marketing Intelligence & Planning, vol. 39 no. 4
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 0263-4503

Keywords

Open Access
Article
Publication date: 10 March 2020

Jaume García and Carles Murillo

This study investigates three issues associated with playing sports video games: the correlates of participation (and its intensity) in this type of activity, their…

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Abstract

Purpose

This study investigates three issues associated with playing sports video games: the correlates of participation (and its intensity) in this type of activity, their complementarity with traditional sports and their perception as sport. Given the scarcity of data on esports participation, these results can be seen as an initial approach to these issues with regard to esports.

Design/methodology/approach

Sequential, two-part and regression models are estimated using a sample of 11,018 individuals from the Survey of Sporting Habits in Spain 2015.

Findings

First, the association of the correlates follows different patterns for participation in sports video games and its intensity. Second, complementarity with traditional sports is found using different approaches. Third, young people consider this activity as a dimension of their overall interest in sports.

Practical implications

The different association of the correlates with participation in esports and its intensity can be used to define marketing and brand investment strategies. The complementarity between esports and traditional sports should influence how the actual stakeholders in sport define future strategies to favour the growth of both industries. Finally, the increasing perception of esports as a sport should influence the future organisation of multi-sport events like the Olympic Games.

Originality/value

Using sports video games participation as a proxy of esports participation, this study is the first to provide empirical evidence of the relevance of distinguishing between participation in esports and its intensity, their complementarity with traditional sports and their perception as sport.

Details

Sport, Business and Management: An International Journal, vol. 10 no. 2
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 2042-678X

Keywords

Article
Publication date: 27 April 2020

Ryan Rogers, Lee Farquhar and Jacob Mummert

To understand how esports viewers perceive endemic and non-endemic sponsors during an event.

1167

Abstract

Purpose

To understand how esports viewers perceive endemic and non-endemic sponsors during an event.

Design/methodology/approach

The researchers employed a four-condition experiment. Participants were randomly assigned to watch a clip with one of four possible sponsors. After participants watched the stimuli, they responded to a questionnaire assessing their opinions of the sponsor in the clip they watched.

Findings

Generally, the more endemic a sponsor was, the more positive audience members had. Perceptions of credibility were also important to attitudes toward sponsors.

Originality/value

Esports is an emergent area where little empirical research has been published. This study is designed to expand upon research on sponsorships such that it explores audience perceptions of endemic versus non-endemic sponsors of esports events.

Details

International Journal of Sports Marketing and Sponsorship, vol. 21 no. 3
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 1464-6668

Keywords

Article
Publication date: 7 December 2020

Amir Zaib Abbasi, Muhammad Asif, Linda D. Hollebeek, Jamid Ul Islam, Ding Hooi Ting and Umair Rehman

This study aims to propose a model for predicting consumers’ esports videogame engagement on their ensuing consumption behaviors, which remains nebulous to date.

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Abstract

Purpose

This study aims to propose a model for predicting consumers’ esports videogame engagement on their ensuing consumption behaviors, which remains nebulous to date.

Design/methodology/approach

After approaching esports consumers in different gaming zones in Pakistan, this paper collected data from 364 videogame-based esports consumers. This paper deployed SmartPLS 3.2.8 software to perform the partial least squares-structural equation modeling-based analyzes.

Findings

The structural model results show that consumers’ affective and behavioral esports videogame engagement positively affects their consumption behavior, including heightened community engagement, purchase intent, coproduction, word-of-mouth and new player recruitment. However, while consumers’ cognitive esports engagement was found to positively impact community engagement, new player recruitment and coproduction, it failed to predict consumers’ esports-related purchase intent or word-of-mouth behaviors.

Practical implications

The findings reveal that a strategic focus on consumers’ esports game engagement will enable practitioners to nurture desirable consumer behaviors, including enhanced purchase intent, coproduction, word-of-mouth and new player recruitment behaviors, thus warranting consumer engagement’s strategic value as a key esports gaming metric.

Originality/value

Empirical research into the role of consumers’ esports videogame engagement on their ensuing consumption behaviors remains scant to date. Based on this gap, this study offers a timely contribution by exploring and validating a model that gauges the effect of consumers’ cognitive, emotional and behavioral esports videogame engagement on their community engagement, purchase intention, coproduction, word-of-mouth and new player recruitment. It, thus, offers important insight into the rapidly advancing field of digital esports games.

Details

Journal of Product & Brand Management, vol. 30 no. 8
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 1061-0421

Keywords

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