Leading Sports Marketing Agency KemperLesnik adds Esports Division

The Chicago-based sports marketing agency KemperLesnik opened up a division to serve the esports industry this year. A leading name in US sports marketing, KemperLesnik's former clients includes the NFL Draft, KitchenAid, and McDonald's.

The agency took on its first esports client a few months ago. They started with industry leader Riot Games, providing media relations for the 2018 League of Legends College Championship. Other services they offer publishers and esports organizations include media training for players and commentators and sponsorship connections.

Though KemperLesnik is new to the industry, co-managing director Tom Valdiserri shows a deep understanding of what works in esports marketing. Valdiserri says their marketing goal is to use esports as a way to connect brands with fans. They do this by creating content that makes an emotional connection with fans.

Esports marketing is a growing niche for agencies, and an increasing number of leading marketers are moving into the space. Most recently, the talent agency CUBE announced its newly-established esports division and the addition of former Counter-Strike pro-player Emil “HeatoN” Christensen to its senior advisors.

The rise of non-endemic sponsors in esports is attracting marketers who would have otherwise overlooked the industry. Another advertising agency, Grey, launched its dedicated esports segment in April.

Then there are marketing agencies who work exclusively with esports organizations, like the California-based agency Damage. The agency represents Gen.G esports and recently hired two former video game executives; former Blizzard CEO Paul Sams and Ed Kiernan, co-founder of Engine Shop.

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