You’ve probably heard of FaZe Clan, a mostly male gaming collective started in 2010. In the decade since, it’s transformed from a small group of friends playing Call of Duty into what’s essentially a media company of gaming influencers.
The New York Times recently published a piece about how FaZe president Greg Selkoe is leaving to start a new organization, dubbed XSET, focused on inclusivity and diversity — because right now many esports groups are male-centric. As FaZe chief executive Lee Trink told the Times, “When it comes to diversity in gaming, there certainly hasn’t been enough progress.”
With that in mind, we’re shining a spotlight on the world of female gaming influencers, with audience demographics and engagement insights from influencer marketing platform CreatorIQ.
Let’s begin with a look at FaZe’s own Ewok (Soleil Wheeler), a 14-year-old deaf girl who was the first female member of the clan and recently celebrated her one-year anniversary with FaZe.
According to CreatorIQ, Ewok’s audience consists mostly of men (84.5%), with the largest age group being the 18-24 age bracket. PlayStation and Xbox top the list of brands this audience is most likely to engage with, followed by Apple, Walt Disney and Nike. Unsurprisingly, gaming is the No. 1 interest for Ewok’s followers, but sports, TV and film, and electronics and computers also rank high.
Ewok’s biggest audience is on Instagram (629,000 followers) and on recent posts, she has an engagement rate of 6.42%, which CreatorIQ considers “excellent” for an influencer of her size. On Twitter, she has 325,000 followers and an engagement rate of 0.67% (considered “good”), while on YouTube, Ewok has 135,000 subscribers and an engagement rate of 7.94% (also considered “good”).
One of her most-viewed recent YouTube videos was an April Fool’s prank titled “So I left FaZe …,” something clearly meant to catch her fans’ attention.
Ewok has also captured the attention of brands, partnering with ones including G Fuel (which calls itself “The Official Energy Drink of Esports.”)
A lesser-known female gaming influencer is AshleyBTW (Ashley Morales), who joined XSET in July. On Twitter, she has 26,7000 followers and an average engagement rate of 0.7% (“good”). AshleyBTW has 8,180 subscribers on YouTube with a “good” average engagement rate of 6.44%. And although she has a relatively small Instagram following (7,200), her average engagement rate there is an “excellent” 11.4%.
Finally, CreatorIQ data surrounding Pokimane (Imane Anys), one of the top female Twitch streamers, who also has the biggest audience of the three gamers. She has 5.5 million YouTube subscribers, 5.1 million Instagram followers, and an audience of 2.3 million on Twitter.
It’s worth noting that although a large following doesn’t always translate to higher engagement, Pokimane has stellar stats across the board, per CreatorIQ: a “good” 6.26% average YouTube engagement rate, an “exemplary” 15.32% on Instagram and an “excellent” 2.69% on Twitter. And, interestingly, one of her most-watched recent videos was a funny Twitter post, not a YouTube video.
— pokimane (@pokimanelol) June 8, 2020
These three influencers are just a handful of the talented female gamers out there. In fact, according to Statista, women make up nearly half of the gamers in the U.S. Despite the gender split, there’s still work to be done when it comes cultivating diversity and inclusion within the community. Hopefully, collectives like XSET and brands like G Fuel can continue to help address this, and more will follow in their footsteps — but only time will tell.