ESL shed light on Mercedes-Benz deal – A road to the future

Bernhard Mogk is the SVP of Global Sales & Business Development at ESL. Following a landmark deal with Mercedes-Benz, we caught up with Bernhard to discuss the partnership, plans for its activation, and the future. 

Bernhard Mogk, ESL

Esports Insider: How did the deal with Mercedes-Benz come about?

Bernhard Mogk: We are currently working very closely with one of the leading creative marketing agencies in Germany. In this partnership, we have assigned dedicated joint teams from both sides, that work on clients’ success.

It’s a completely new way of working, much more focused on co-creation and co-ownership of ideas and their execution, which in turn was very beneficial to the type of campaign Mercedes were after. They got to work with someone who has known their brand for a number of years, and someone who understands esports like no other.

“Everyone who is familiar with Mercedes-Benz knows that they have very high standards when it comes to marketing and promoting their products”

ESI: How do you plan to activate this partnership? It appears to be a fairly committed, long term deal can you shed any light on this?

Bernhard: Everyone who is familiar with Mercedes-Benz knows that they have very high standards when it comes to marketing and promoting their products.

“You can expect way more than just a bunch of logos in the hall and parking cars in front of the arena”

If you look at their previous campaigns and engagements, you will quickly notice how well designed and implemented their activations have been, and are. On the other side, we as ESL have set incredibly high standards when it comes to esports marketing. We want to give our clients a chance to integrate their brands and products in the most authentic and native ways possible. When the brand offers additional value to the esports fans, they will show their appreciation. You can expect way more than just a bunch of logos in the hall and parking cars in front of the arena.

We’re planning a significant number and kind of activations aimed at engaging, entertaining and immersing fans both on-site and those watching online.

ESI: What are the plans for ESL One Hamburg?

ESL: ESL One Hamburg will be the big kick-off of our partnership with Mercedes-Benz.

“Mercedes-Benz is not only another very strong  non-endemic sponsor who has entered the esports market, it’s a global premium brand with a strong heritage”

We are planning various activations on the ground but also online. Right now we are working on an idea which will allow us to influence the atmosphere in the arena in a very emotional, but also natural way. We will also make use of some mobility-services that Mercedes-Benz offers to provide our visitors and teams with unique benefits.   

ESI: Do you expect such a big name entering to be a catalyst, and that final push perhaps, for other such brands to invest in esports?

ESL: We do indeed anticipate that. Mercedes-Benz is not only another very strong  non-endemic sponsor who has entered the esports market – it’s a global premium brand with a strong marketing and sports heritage. But there is more to it than just power of the brand. This is a true commitment to esports which will be articulated in a series of event and online activations in multiple markets.

ESI: Cars are becoming ‘smarter’ and more connected. The future of driverless cars beckons and with it a whole new economy of in-car media, content and games. Is this deal Mercedes looking to this future and embracing it now? Will we be watching ESL One New York 2022 in the back of our Uber S-Class Merc?

ESL: We truly believe that this partnership is mapping out a road to the future – not only by the way of who gets involved in esports, but also in the way brands engage with esports fans, and how esports content is consumed.

As for long terms plans on what’s coming with the next S-Class, you’ll need to ask Mercedes, but with the rapid growth of the industry and brands’ ability to think outside of the box, this isn’t completely unthinkable and would be an incredible achievement!