Despite the occasional decline in popularity, the WWE has established itself as a staple in the entertainment industry. Their brand and associated characters have become household names since being introduced as the WWF in 1982. The years since creation have not always been easy, having seen its share of new competitors in the wrestling industry, various legal disputes, and failed ventures into other territories. The brand found itself coming out of a five year slump that was a result of a lack of a superstar that could carry its reputation. Currently, the WWE is trying to recapture the energy that built them. Efforts to do so have come in the form of more live events, producing movies, subscription services to access past content. After thoroughly examining the case, we feel that WWE’s biggest advantage is how much weight and power the brand now has. This power affords the brand opportunities that competitors do not have access too. To “weather” the ever increasing fad of MMA, and still stay relevant, it would be in the WWE’s best interest to refrain from “converting” these MMA fans, and focus on their core “die hard” fanatics. We feel that WWE should put a major focus on showing appreciation for the fans that built the brand in the form of a new subscription service, better organized online content and networking, increased number of live events, and wider range of celebrities to be co-branded. Analysis
When looking at the success of the WWE, most of the credit can be given to Vince McMahon. He began his career in the wrestling business around the 1970’s where he worked for his father’s business. His main job here was to commentate on the matches and to promote the business. In 1982 he bought the company from his father and renamed in the world wrestling foundation. His first step to success was to thin out the competition by having his wrestling matches aired around the country causing other business to drop out of the industry. Vince McMahon then did another unthinkable act by admitting that all the matches were scripted. This ended up causing the WWE to draw in even more fans than before because of the new story lines and intricate characters. It was not until the late 1980’s when the WWE faced its biggest competition in the WCW. The WCW even paid out millions of dollars to get some of the WWE’s biggest stars in an attempt to steal some ratings from the powerhouse in the WWE. It was not until 2001 that Vince was able to yet again eliminate some of his competition by acquiring the WCW and gaining all of their wrestlers. Then a year later Vince McMahon was hit with another setback, he was hit by a ruling in Britain that claimed the WWF trademark belonged to a wildlife fund and was forced to change the company’s name to the WWE. Since acquiring the WWE Vince started to look into popular soap operas to add more of a storyline to his production then just straight wrestling. This new strategy left fans with a mixture of romance, sex, sports, comedy, violence, and special effects that increased their popularity. With the matches being scripted, all of the details were worked out in advanced leaving the fans with more a crisp performance. Another success to Vince was him claiming the rights to many of the characters names used throughout his shows so if even if a performer was to leave they could not take their stage name with them. It was then in the 1990’s when the WWE added a second show they would air called Smackdown. The way he promoted his new series was by using the same characters causing the audience to want to watch both shows increasing his overall rating even more. It was then in 2005 when the WWE incorporated another series by adding WWE Superstars, which is aired on WGN America. During this time all three series were doing very well in the rating especially with the male viewers. One of the biggest obstacles in the WWE is constantly being on the road since they perform 300 live performances...
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