PokerStars Targets YouTube Generation with KSI and The Sidemen Collaboration

3 min read

PokerStars is embracing the YouTube generation like never before with a new promotion featuring KSI and his vlogging buddies, The Sidemen.

KSI poker
PokerStars has teamed up with KSI and The Sidemen to attract new players from the YouTube generation. (Image: YouTube/PokerStars)

The social media stars have a combined following of more than 20 million, and will help PokerStars target a new demographic.

This significance of the link-up is evident from the number of views PokerStars has achieved with its recent video. The Joes vs. Pro Challenge sees five of The Sidemen take on PokerStars pro Ben Spragg, aka Spraggy, in a six-man tournament.

The Sidemen Make for Compulsive Viewing

More than 435,000 people have watched the video at the time of writing (see above). That’s a significant number of views in just four days. PokerStars’ most-watched YouTube video in the last three months is a charity stream featuring Hollywood celebs, and that has a comparatively low 91,000 views.

KSI, The Sidemen, and another YouTuber, True Geordie, are also set to take part in the Stadium Series weekly finals. They’ll stream the action via their Twitch channels and receive input from pros such as Spragg, Lex Veldhuis, and Charlie Carrol.

The collaboration has already paid dividends in terms of exposure. Similar to when PokerStars worked with sports stars like Cristiano Ronaldo, those tuning in are followers of the star in question.

In this instance, PokerStars is taking a page from boxing, and switching on a generation of YouTube fans. The two boxing matches between KSI and Logan Paul may have lacked something in the skills department, but both events attracted millions of views.

Working with KSI should have a similar effect for PokerStars. What’s more, the Englishman was a gamer before he hit the big time. This tacit connection to poker makes him an ideal candidate for promotional material.

KSI Collaboration Brings in New Generation

Working with KSI also brings his group of friends, The Sidemen, into the mix, which could be a mixed blessing for the site. The YouTube generation mainly consists of young adults, though a significant proportion of KSI’s fans are teenagers, meaning they may not be able to provide any actual value to the site for some time to come.

Reports leading up to the second fight between KSI and Logan Paul describe scenes of “young fans” lining the streets. also notes that 12% of KSI’s fans are females under 18, and 11% are males in the same age group.

Every major celebrity has fans that span all age groups. PokerStars hasn’t targeted them in the past and isn’t targeting them now. However, YouTube is an open platform, and many of its biggest stars attract a younger audience than may often be associated with poker.

Be that as it may, KSI and The Sidemen are figureheads for the internet generation, and PokerStars is clearly targeting a different type of audience.

This is already proving to be a shrewd move. The vloggers have online followings that even the biggest stars in Hollywood can’t match. In the race to get views and attract new players, this will be considered a win.

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