I feel the WWE has changed its relationship with its fans, and that is a good thing.
Chris Harrington here does a great job explaining what the WWE Network numbers are and what they should be. He gives 10 ways he believes that the network can improve said low numbers. One idea he doesn’t list is improve the actual content on television.
This week’s Monday Night Raw was viewed by and average of 4.43 million viewers. This is a great number and an excellent way to directly target wrestling fans. WWE did a great job of this by running a few excellent angles to get fans excited about SummerSlam 2014 which is an exclusive property of the network. We were treated to an excellent angle between Stephanie McMahon and Brie Bella. I joked on Twitter that after that angle they could have the two women headline Wrestlemania. I was only half kidding, keeping the women apart in limited physical interactions is building a match up very well that we know won’t live up to the hype.
Brock Lesnar also made a return to the program as HHH’s plan C to challenge and take away John Cena‘s title. This was Lesnar’s return to television after the Wrestlemania season where he got tons of coverage breaking the Undertaker’s streak.
The WWE is a diversified company that makes money a few different ways. This network is a huge investment and investors moving forward are going to judge the company fairly or unfairly based on the numbers it does. This is one area where fans actually have leverage due to the fact they want you to sign up. If the company continues to provide excellent television as it did last night, and do great build up to events like SummerSlam, the fans could be big winners in this new relationship.