The Top E-Sports Newsletter on Substack

Creator Encounter: Jacob Wolf


Hey Guys,

Jacob was a fellow Creator who I met in Substack Grow, I noticed in the Zoom chats that he was pretty confident. After looking into his work I understand why.

This guy is a beast, he’s one of the leading voices on Substack in Gaming with a specialization in E-sports.

With nearly 90k followers on Twitter (@JacobWolf)

His Newsletter in E-sports has a slant in investigative journalism best practices and breaking news, with tons of original reporting. Let me just say that it’s far easier to make it on Substack as a political journalist rather than a technology journalist.

Jacob is part of a new breed of #GenZ writer I’m noticing on Substack that have serious pursuits elsewhere, whether it be YouTube, TikTok or Podcasting or Game streaming.

One of the most memorable dialogues I had with Jacob was about Twitter’s woefully low CTR. This means you can go “viral” on Twitter and not get as many link clicks to your work vs. the number of impressions as some other networks.

If you also came to Substack without a huge Email list, you know how hard it is to grow from scratch.

That being said, Jacob has years of investigative journalism as ESPN, a credible reputation and a deep network in the journalism community.

“Wolf is a walking encyclopedia — not only of esports, but of the entertainment and media industry in general.” — Digiday

“Wolf owns a reputation as one of the leading news breakers in the world of esports, where information is typically tightly controlled.” — The Washington Post

“Wolf has been a super star for quite some time” — Esports Heaven

His social Proof is super strong. His recommendation from the top Sports Newsletter has enabled him to grow relatively quickly.

Austin based Jacob Wolf is also the Founder of Overcome.

Check out his Podcast

Click to listen.

Jacob obviously has a super personal brand and a lot of ambition, grit and a high-value niche. If anyone can make it on Substack, it’s him.

Gaming has a problem. No one asks the hard questions. "Visionaries" is a new twice-weekly interview show hosted by former ESPN, award-winning investigative journalist Jacob Wolf. Wolf will welcome on the most powerful in gaming, from executives atop multi-billion dollar companies, influencers with millions of followers, and athletes and musicians who are integrating gaming further into consumer culture. No question is off the table. Live every Monday and Wednesday on Twitter at @overcome, with audio-on-demand available the next day on Apple Podcasts, Spotify, or wherever you get your podcasts. Starting July 25, 2022.

Jacob seemed very dialed into the entrepnreural mind-set.

He talks about #esports, #journalism, #sportsbusiness, and #investigativejournalism, among other things.

Twitter Spaces

He’s yet another Substack Creator who is going the route of integrating with Twitter Spaces.

Jacob also has not shied away from uncovering some of the problematic cultural aspects of the Gaming industry such as financial scams, sexual abuse, and the big business aspects of roster transactions within E-sports.

Substack Thread Discussions

Jacob also leverages thread discussions, and discount offers in the welcome Email. So he’s amped up to create a readership but also foster a community. He’s found that he’s also a top of the funnel entry to readers and audiences who may not know much about the E-sports world. (as if often the case with people over 35).

My honest talk with Jacob also reminded me how early we still are in Substack’s efforts to grow its audience and niches. Gaming, E-sports and Sports in general is just getting started on the platform.

Here is his latest Discussion thread:

Jacob Wolf Pioneer in the Gaming Category

Jacob is one of the most serious writers in the Gaming, E-Sports and intersection with Technology and Sports.

#Gaming isn’t a easily found category without a discover page. I have the same issue with my #MachineLearning backend category.

Jacob has changed his writing style to adapt to the top-of-the-funnel (more broad) audience he’s attracting to Substack from Twitter and his own audience across channels.

I’m the youngest talent the company (ESPN) has ever hired. (on being hired at 19).

We talked about the challenge of doing original reporting on a high-octane frequency.

  • Jacob is working on Podcasting, documentaries, production, videography (50 hours a week) with Overcome.

  • He started his Substack in April, 2022. (Around 20 hours a week). 3 Months in.

  • So he just launched Overcome and The Jacob Wolf Report.

  • He publishes on a Tuesday, Thursday, Friday Schedule.

  • His Breaking News stuff will never be paywalled. (due to aggregation)

Top Posts on Jacob Wolf Report Early 2022

Top Posts

The Jacob Wolf Report
Flashpoint dead as members walk away from competitive Counter-Strike
Nine months after the sports world shut down amid the coronavirus outbreak in March 2020, a series of top esports players, commentators and staff flew to London. That November, with the virus outlook improving, the crew behind Flashpoint hoped that they could get back on track. Within two weeks, their worst fear became a real…
Read more
black keyboard
Photo by Mateo on Unsplash

The Jacob Wolf Report
Activision Blizzard Is Owed Approximately $400 Million in Franchise Payments for Overwatch, Call of Duty Leagues
Activision Blizzard is still owed between $390 and $420 million in franchise payments from teams participating in the Overwatch and Call of Duty Leagues after it deferred payments for two years as COVID-19 relief, league sources told The Jacob Wolf Report…
Read more

Substack Network

  • Jacob mentioned how different interests play off of each other from an audience standpoint. e.g. Mainstream sports and E-sports.

  • Emerging trends: e.g. MMA and E-Sports.

  • Not just about Niche traffic, but intersectional interests.

GenZ, YouTube and Gaming Emergence

Jacob went into some detail about how the Creator Economy is growing up as Gaming and E-Sports is growing up as well.

League of Legends World Championship is watched by 30 million people. Yet E-Sports is still a huge hardcore niche within the Gaming audience.

Patreon has good synergy with E-Sports. Substack is not very well known for GenZ audiences.

Substack has room to grow in the Gaming industry.

Gaming doesn’t have hyper success gaming influencer journalists.

Substack would perhaps have to improve its partnerships, marketing, SEO credibility. Jacob mentioned they could be doing more multi-platform marketing. e.g. Discord integration.

Anyways Jacob is an incredibly serious Creator on Substack and had a lot of tips for us with regarding how to grow better. He mentioned:

  • Subreddits (Reddit)

  • Discord benefits (a community he’s built up)

  • Twitter can be abysmal (is a News platform but terrible link click rates)

  • 3+ million impressions, but only 16k link clicks.

  • Go to where people are more involved and actively engaged with your niche.

  • How to choose the right price point on Substack

Jacob was an incredibly unique guest to interview and I’m very grateful that he generously gave me some of his time.

Please check out his work:

A lot of us are really hustling on Substack and as we all know growth a the beginning is the hardest part.

Thanks for listening and reading!

If you want to support my enthusiasm, interviews, tweets on Substack and time, or get access to my Substack tips, feel free to support.