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PUBG keeps winning the influencer battle royale

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As esports gain momentum and continues to increase audience sizes, brands are leaning into activations with gaming influencers. But which ones are having the most success when it comes to generating engagement and influence from sponsored content?

This article is part of our series leveraging influencer marketing platform CreatorIQ’s Share of Influence report, which reveals the global gaming brands that are capturing attention and gaining — or losing — influence each month. CreatorIQ processes tens of millions of creators and billions of posts to generate Share of Influence (SOI) reports, which consider the volume of creator activity, the realness of creators’ audiences, and the performance of content (views, likes, comments, shares) for each contender brand. These three measures make SOI a powerful representation of a brand’s influencer marketing presence and impact.

Today, we’re highlighting the gaming brands that received notable SOI in October. That month, the industry generated 116,000 sponsored posts from 23,000 creators with 348 brands sponsoring content.

Key October highlights

  • 2.23%: average engagement rate on Instagram for sponsored content within the gaming category in October
  • 206,000: average estimated post reach
  • PUBG Corporation was the No. 1 brand by share of influence (SOI) at 10.53%, with an estimated media value of $20 million from its influencer campaigns.
  • Golden State Warriors had the most-engaged-with sponsored post in the video gaming industry
    • 399,4000 likes
    • 2,000 comments
    • 2.2 million estimated reach

Above: The Warriors have come out to play on social media!

Image Credit: Creator IQ

How brands are stacking up

For the second month in a row, PUBG Corporation was on top for SOI, but its 10.53% share in October was slightly lower than September’s 13.75%. While PUBG had the highest engagement rate for the month out of the top five brands (1.49%), it was second for estimated media value ($20 million vs. Twitch’s $20.2 million). And although PlayStation was No. 2 for SOI in October, its engagement rate of 0.52% was the lowest of the top five brands.

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Despite not making the top 15 ranking, three other notable brands from October were Google Stadia, Playground Games, and Gearbox Software, which all experienced SOI increases of 84%-plus.

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Once again, nano influencers delivered the highest engagement rates

Influencer size can play a key role in average engagement rates. While it may seem counterintuitive, creators with smaller audiences often command a better engagement rate than mega-celebrities, partly because their followers tend to be passionate and less broadly distributed across niches.

For the second month in a row, nano influencers (1,000-10,000 followers) had the highest average engagement rate, 5.14% — notably lower than September’s 9%. And, unlike September when mega influencers (1 million-plus followers) were No. 2 for engagement, in October they dropped to last place (1.15%).  Micro-influencers (10,000-100,000 followers) came in second with an average engagement of 4.14%, followed by macro-influencers (100,000-1 million followers) with 2.88%.

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Methodology: Share of Influence considers the volume of creator activity, the realness of creators’ audiences, and the performance of content (views, likes, comments, shares) for each contender brand. These three measures make SOI a powerful representation of a brand’s influencer marketing presence and impact. SOI uses data from the core CreatorIQ platform, which processes tens of millions of creators and billions of posts. Every verified creator on Instagram and every creator with more than 50K followers is included, along with millions of smaller creators across multiple social platforms.

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