At the Dubai-based esports firm Galaxy Racer, incoming CMO Allan Phang is focused on creating value for organization’s global audiences.
I recently asked him to show us what he’s been doing to maximize the value of the 160 million followers Galaxy Racer claims to attract.
Paul Talbot: When you step back and look at the world of esports, what strikes you as particularly significant?
Allan Phang: The audience. Back in 2017 while working in a corporate company, I conducted market research in the world of esports and immediately realized the immense value and potential it has, especially for brands, due to its amazing year-on-year growth in terms of audience.
Esports is a spectator sport and the amount of eyeballs it attracts is a gold mine for marketers, as its viewers consist of the hard-to-reach demographics of Millennials, Generation Z Digital Natives and Generation Alpha, which have a valuable customer lifecycle.
The esports audience is no longer watching linear television. They use pop-up ad blockers and prefer watching esports compared to traditional sports. It’s their new form of entertainment.
Talbot: You’re working on strategic marketing plans for your brands right now. How are you approaching this process in terms of making sure they’re both relevant for today and sustainable for the long haul?
Phang: We have a global strategic marketing plan that is executable across all markets, with the ability to hyper-localize it, as the esports audience has its nuances. The esports audience is fragmented and our marketing initiatives will be dependent on a few factors, such as game genres, country specific esports communities and languages.
What works in the West, may not be applicable in the East, and vice versa. It is imperative that our marketing strategy is sustainable and timeless with a long-term goal in mind.
Talbot: Marketing plans and business plans don’t always complement one another. What are you doing to ensure the best possible synergies between the two?
Phang: Our marketing decisions are aligned with our business goals with constant communication between our leadership team. Expectations are managed by ensuring key KPIs and actionable items are tracked, with quarterly reports being submitted to management.
Based on my personal experience being in the esports world, one day in esports, is like a hundred days in real life. Things are moving really fast in the esports space.
Talbot: Do you foresee a consolidation in the esports space? If so, or if not, how do your marketing strategies address this?
Phang: The esports space is still in its nascent stage. There is a lot of opportunity and gaps to be closed. Mergers and acquisitions are happening in the esports space as we speak.
Based on my personal observation, some consolidations that took place previously in the esports space did not work out well due to clash of values. Our marketing strategies are disruptive, forward-thinking and focused on adding value to our fans instead of being reactive to our competitors.
We will do our best to stay ahead of the curve with strategic partnerships and potential acquisitions from a macro perspective to add value to our fans and the esports ecosystem.
Talbot: What processes do you use to make sure you have the best possible understanding of your customers?
Phang: To ensure the best possible understanding of our audiences, our marketing objectives are executed from a strategic and tactical standpoint, by conducting market research, market orientation, segmentation, targeting and positioning.
When working with brands, the 4 Ps of marketing will come into play: product, price, place and promotion, also known as the marketing mix. Digital marketing and social media marketing is the order of the day to reach out to the esports audience.
Talbot: Any other insights on marketing strategy you’d like to share?
Phang: Traditional marketing strategies may not be entirely effective towards the esports audience. The marketing strategies being deployed are of a hybrid model which may come across as ‘alien’ to the uninitiated marketer.
Memes are a common theme in marketing to specific segments of the esports audience. For example, you cannot market a League of Legends messaging towards a Dota 2 fan and vice versa. It will go viral on Reddit for the wrong reasons. It is important to stay relevant by being part of the community and to understand them from their perspective as an esports audience and gamer before marketing to them.
Good morning, Dean. A few questions for Allan.
When you step back and look at the world of esports, what strikes you as particularly significant?
You’re working on strategic marketing plans for your brands right now. How are you approaching this process in terms of making sure they’re both relevant for today and sustainable for the long haul?
Marketing plans and business plans don’t always complement one another. What are you doing to ensure the best possible synergies between the two?
Do you foresee a consolidation in the esports space? If so, or if not, how do your marketing strategies address this?
What processes do you use to make sure you have the best possible understanding of your customers?
Any other insights on marketing strategy you’d like to share?
That’s it, Dean.
Without setting off needless fire drills, what’s a reasonable deadline for getting responses back? If July 28th is a stretch, please let me know what works.
Thanks again for your help and have a great day.