ESforce executives speak at 2018 National Advertising Forum

On November 12–14, the National Advertising Forum is being held in Moscow. At this annual event, leading players of the advertising market discuss current issues related to the industry’s development. On the second day of the Forum, its working schedule included talks by Yaroslav Meshalkin, chief strategic communications officer at ESforce Holding, and Pavel Medvedev, ESforce’s business development lead. They spoke at sessions dedicated to marketing in esports and brand management.

In his talk in the Brand & Communications section, Yaroslav Meshalkin noted the efficiency of esports as a tool for “rejuvenating” a brand. Giving examples of traditionally “mature” brands reaching out to younger audiences, he presented the cases of Pochta Bank and Stoloto, which launched their own esports activities in 2018, and mentioned the international HR cases of PwC and Deloitte.

Yaroslav Meshalkin, chief strategic communications officer, ESforce Holding: “We communicate frequently with brands from a wide variety of industries which feel the need to ‘rejuvenate’ themselves in order to reach new audiences. This is usually done for one of two purposes: increasing sales among young people or recruiting them. Since we are currently one of the main gateways to younger audiences, we use esports to help brands achieve these objectives.”

Other speakers at the session included: Svetlana Mironyuk, executive director at PwC; Alexander Kostikov, communications director at PepsiCo; Inna Pekhova, general manager of the Petroff Palace Hotel; Natalya Gandurina, general manager of Forbes Russia; Irina Arkhipova, public affairs and communications director at Coca-Cola HBC Eurasia; and Alexey Kuznetsov, CEO of Sinestetica.

Earlier, in a session titled Esports Marketing: To Play or Not to Play?, Pavel Medvedev shared insights and results from the esports marketing case of the pharmaceutical brand Kagocel. The brand partnered with EPICENTER, an international tournament in Counter-Strike: Global Offensive held in Moscow in October.

Pavel Medvedev, business development lead, ESforce Holding: “Kagocel’s case was Russia’s first collaboration between esports and an antiviral drug brand, which made it important to convey the meaning of the partnership correctly to the audience. Together with Kagocel and the Wavemaker agency, we came up with our key communication idea, ‘Boley pravilno!’. [The phrase has a double meaning, ‘Do being ill right!’ or ‘Do rooting right!’ — Trans.] Via a number of online and offline activities, we were able to successfully develop this idea, present the brand in a cohesive way, and engage the audience in communication.”

Other speakers at the session included Tatyana Zheltomirskaya, strategic marketing and partnership director at StarLadder, Arkady Ivanchenko, marketing director at GK Niarmedik, Alexander Shibanov, brand manager at Axe, and Rodion Sokolov, co-founder of Click-Storm and Cybernetica.

ESforce speakers participate in key business events on a regular basis, sharing their accumulated expertise in esports marketing with professionals from various areas and showcasing their own implemented collaborative projects with commercial brands.

The National Advertising Forum is a key event in the world of Russian advertising. The Forum provides a discussion platform that brings industry players together to engage in conversations on the issues of efficiently growing the advertising market on a national scale. The Forum’s speakers are acknowledged experts with dozens of implemented cases to their names. In 2018, the Forum is being held for the third time.