By Jason Parker
December 10, 2019
Today in “news we absolutely did not expect”: Wingstop is calling out to esports viewers to improve their sales. How? By teaming up with Twitch, of course! How often are you sitting at your desk or in front of your TV, watching a stream and thinking “I could go for some wings”?
This is more often than I’d care to admit. For a limited time, Wingstop customers can do just that! This is weird news, but it’s fascinating. Apparently, it’s outperforming Twitch’s key partnership benchmarks around engagement (according to its CMO).
This is not new, though! If you’re old like me, you might remember the Everquest/Pizza Hut partnership, in which you could use the “/pizza” command to have pizza delivered to your home. So, this is not new, but it is different.
This limited-time offer allows customers to order food directly through Twitch until December 16. It began in late November, so it’s been going for a decent amount of time. If that’s not enough, it also features Wingstop’s Wing Calculator.
This helps you pick flavors to try based on your personal preferences. Since this is doing so well, I imagine we’ll see other promotions like this in the future. Wingstop sounds like they’re going to look to other portions of the esports audience/esports teams to build their brand.
I mean, who doesn’t love wings? Not to mention you can get a huge order of wings delivered to your front door without having to stop watching any of the action! I mean, you will when the food gets there, but it’s a small price to pay.
Christina Clarke, Wingstop’s Chief Marketing Officer discussed this promotion:
“Twitch is a huge part of the gaming landscape, and we know that we must invest in the platform if we want to continue engaging with our Wingstop gaming fans while also reaching new consumers.
Coming from a traditional sports background [managing Frito-Lay North America’s partnerships across professional leagues, teams, and athletes], I’m excited about the opportunities that exist for Wingstop to continue engaging with traditional sports and esports fans and platforms alike.”
I’m excited about this Wingstop Twitch deal too if I can be honest. Wingstop has delicious wings and it’s a pretty fast-growing chain.
There’s a lot of potential in this deal if Wingstop is truly seeing a lot of success in the esports realm. Wingstop’s not new to the sporting realm either. They have five sponsorships with professional teams, including the latest being the Dallas Cowboys back in September.
Perhaps this Wingstop Twitch deal will come back, or maybe they’ll try Facebook Gaming, YouTube or even Mixer! Who knows? Other potential ideas would be to have the Wingstop food trucks showing up at major esports events. One of my favorite things about esports events, other than the action itself, is trying new and interesting foods.
So, having Wingstop trucks at Smite Worlds, Overwatch Majors or MTG Arena events would be incredible. Wingstop generates more than 35% of its sales in digital venues. This is from their website, mobile app and chatbot on Facebook Messenger, Twitter and Amazon Echo.
It’s clear to me they certainly are on board with growing their digital audience. Their goal is to be one of the top 10 restaurant chains in the world. It sounds like they understand something other companies don’t: the power of esports.
Another point to note is that live streams for important tournaments are long. League of Legends, Magic and Overwatch streams can go on for at least eight hours. It’s even better if you have other people coming over at various times. Whether it’s on campus or at home, I can see Wingstop making multiple deliveries to the same place in one night.
Hey, wings are serious business, don’t judge me. One thing pointed out is that 52% of all consumers interested in esports (about 50 million people worldwide) use ad blockers. This makes it harder for companies to get their names out there.
Nobody likes being advertised to, after all. So, they’re getting creative. This advertising campaign is honestly ingenious David Pucik, vice president of games and digital strategy at Magid (consulting firm) said:
“That’s a tough number to overcome and explains an uptick in traditional sponsorships in esports and streaming. Everyone understands brand sponsorships regardless of language.
Food is deeply endemic and inherently needs to be delivered in a live sort of sense in the context of whatever you are doing. Ordering food for esports events is a small step beyond placing orders to stream Netflix, Amazon Prime Video, or the latest episode of Watchmen on HBO.”
For what it’s worth, it sounds like Wingstop knows their audience. I know I’m going to try it with my local Wingstop. Cajun dry rub, here I come!