How CBS Will Change The eSports Channel
It was only a matter of time that another player in traditional media cast their gaze on esports but my first guess was not going to be CBS interactive. Though in hindsight their play makes perfect sense, they own Gamespot after all and recently acquired Giantbomb.
News of CBS jumping in the ring has sent a ripple effect of heightened emotions across the interwebs and twitterverse, many praising the deal as some sort fulfilled prophecy. CBS hasn’t clearly stated its expectations of this new deal or really what rules content providers will have adhere to in order to maintain the premium ad buys they are looking to acquire.
So let’s take a look at what this deal might actually mean
Better targeted ads
I don’t know about anyone else but I find watching ads about dishwashing liquid irrelevant to me when watching dreamhack or IPL, with this new deal targeted campaigns from the Gamespot library will find syndication across all its inventory. Good bye dishpan hands, hello game trailers.
Splintered partnership program
User generated content though provides a lot of uniques. Impressions also lack something that is crucial to ad buys, content predictability. Youtube is having a hard time commanding the premium on the level that it would like for its aggregated content. Advertisers who are used to doing television buys against Modern Family have a hard time throwing money against a kitty playing piano with a birthday hat on. So to that end the current Twitch.tv partner plan could change to one of 2 things. Both new and current partners will have new guidelines to adhere to or a different tier of partnership with exclusive benefits to the platform, similar to YouTube’s branded channels.
Lines in the sand
This era of esports has enjoyed a co-opetition where companies and organizations though are opposed to each other on paper help each other, some more than others but there is a general understanding that esports is a toddler who is learning to walk. There is a need to nurture this fragile industry as it won’t sustain the kind of corporate wars of attrition that other mature industries endure. Enter CBS, whose arch nemesis News Corp stands benefactor of the IPL. Though IPL states that News Corp plays no active role in IPL, doesn’t mean CBS is going to want to see any of their strategic actions benefit News Corp or any of their properties.
Time will tell how it will all play out, how do you think the deal will affect esports?