Gamer Sensei; A Self Portrait Who we are and the Role of Esports Coaching during COVID-19

Gamer Sensei is currently positioned as a leader in the video game coaching platform ecosystem offering professional coaching for nearly 20 different popular esports titles including League of Legends, Overwatch, Fortnite and many others.  Since our inception in 2016 we have forged official partnerships with the National Association for Collegiate Esports (NACE) as well as High School Esports League (HSEL) to provide high quality, professional coaching services for their high school and collegiate esports teams across the country.  These strategic partnerships make us the most trusted brand of coaching in the space for schools looking to grow their esports programs and they make us a prime destination for some of the most talented coaches in the world.

Gamer Sensei isn’t the only one offering esports coaching services these days.  While platforms such as Fiverr, ProGuides and Gamer Coach are all unique in their own way, a couple key things that define Gamer Sensei’s brand of coaching include our screening process for new coaching applicants as well as our passion for bringing purpose to the esports industry.  Unlike many coaching platforms out there, we take the time to fact check our coach’s achievements, and interview potential coaching candidates to ensure that they are masters of the games they coach while being great teachers at the same time. 

At Gamer Sensei, we are passionate about how esports programs can help contribute to higher quality education for students around the world.  Last year in 2019 we were invited to attend a roundtables event hosted by Beyond Sport that brought together 10 influential companies across the esports industry to discuss how esports infrastructure could be leveraged by the United Nations to help achieve the UN sustainable development goals.  The findings of the Beyond Sport Program were reported directly to the United Nations.  We are also collaborating with our partner Generation Esports on their free to play charity tournament Social Distancing Cup here in April to raise awareness of social distancing initiatives, and support low-income families during this time of need through the “Social Distancing Cup COVID-19 Response Fund”.

Gamer Sensei is a home for talented players looking to build their coaching business, or supplement their income especially during the global pandemic that we are experiencing.  We have around 500 active coaches at any given time across 20 different popular esports titles ranging from League of Legends, to Fortnite and most recently Magic: The Gathering Arena.  Our coaches are located around the world in just about every time zone one can imagine and we are always working to add new games to our growing repertoire of titles that we offer coaching for.  As such, we are continuing to cultivate what is already considered the largest collection of top quality, curated esports coaches in the world.

COVID-19 has kick started a whole new chapter for esports based business around the world.  We are blessed to be one of the few industries that has ‘dodged the proverbial corona bullet’ so to speak, and oddly enough it seems that we are riding that bullet to new found successes along with new responsibilities.  While governments close down schools, parks, places of public gatherings and families embrace “Stay at Home” initiatives to stop the spread of the virus, business has noticeably improved.  The number of visitors to the website has doubled and money spent on the platform is up 50% during the last two weeks of March.  We are projecting to double the number of lessons on the platform in April compared to February 2020 and with this small amount of success I ask myself how we can give back to families, and communities suffering from COVID-19.

Historically speaking roughly 80% of our users are between the ages of 18-34, and about 85% of our users are male.  Since March, we have noticed coaches in our community reporting an increased number of lessons with families or lessons being scheduled by parents for children under the age of 18.  Earlier in April I asked our coaching community to be open to doing group lessons for families stuck at home together for no extra charge.  An overwhelming majority of our coaches welcomed the idea and to my surprise, many took it one step further voluntarily dropping their rates for a limited time in an attempt to help families and children of all ages forget about the new normal for a couple hours.  It’s through these types of community initiatives that we hope to bring some joy to those whose lives have been disrupted due to Covid 19 and help families enjoy time with their loved ones while staying home together.

What about job security?  Can companies like ours in the Esports sector help to alleviate financial stress for those who have lost their jobs due to COVID-19?  The short answer is yes.  As I mentioned before, with new success comes new responsibility.  We have a responsibility to provide talented players with the opportunity to earn income doing something they’re passionate about in a safe and secure online environment. 

We have always had coaches that are able to coach full time on our platform.  As is similar with just about any job, you reap what you sow and the most successful coaches on our platform are those that have the ability to forge meaningful long-term coaching relationships with their students.  These kinds of relationships take time to develop so while not all newer coaches can expect to pull 40 hour work weeks their first week on the job, they can expect part time work and an opportunity to grow their own unique brand of coaching with us.

That said, we have experienced a recent surge in coaching applications these past two months with the advent of Covid 19 and expect to onboard an increased amount of new coaches in coming months.  We suspect the recent standstill of the economy is forcing people to be more creative with the ways they earn money and supplement their income.  While it takes time for coaches to build their business on the platform, and new coaches aren’t always able to work full time right away, Gamer Sensei and online esports coaching in general remains a solid option for talented players looking to supplement their income during times of economic hardship.