My Latest Column for Just…$9.99
I am hearing that the constant plugging for WWE Network for 9.99 is going to continue. WWE feels that the “9.99” is sort of a buzzword. Does anyone remember when commentary was used to sell the matches and put wrestlers over, and not used for constant pandering about social media and product placement? Pepperidge Farm Remembers! Sorry guys, I had to use that one. I understand that WWE is trying to build up their subscriber base after they failed to hit their projected numbers, but I am not sure if this is the way to do it. It actually reminds me of a job I had a few years ago. I was working as an admissions rep for a corporation that ran a family of for-profit colleges. Due to a gag order that has been placed, I won’t be able to name the company but all you have to do is use Google and you will have an idea of who I had worked for. As an admissions rep, our job was to basically spend 8 hours out of the day calling potential students about going to one of these schools. The only problem is that you would call these potential students around 8 times a day trying to plug the school. Normally, they would either not pick up, hang up on your, or finally scream at you to stop calling them. It would even turn off folks who were genuinely interested because of how desperate we came off in order to get their tuition money with the constant calls! I look at WWE Network the same exact way. Whether WWE mentions the Network being 9.99 three times throughout the show or 127 times throughout the show, I feel that the person will order WWE Network regardless if they are truly interested. They won’t need someone to remind them a shit ton of times about the value. Just as whether you call that person once a day or 8 times a day; if a person is really interested in going to school they will go without someone constantly reminding them about it. You can mention the satisfaction ratings, give away WWE key chains, and even throw in a hand job from one of the WWE Divas; but at the end of the day the people who truly want it mostly likely will already have it. Treating wrestling fans like they are idiots by constantly harassing them about the pricing isn’t going to cause some cosmic shift in subscribers. The constant pandering actually makes the folks at WWE come off as desperate. To be honest, I felt the constant mentions of it take away from the show itself. I can’t explain why WWE Network doesn’t have more subscribers with the low price of 9.99. It’s worth it for me just based on the fact that I get to see all of the Pay-Per-Views. Is it the content? Is it the fact that TV is still the main vehicle for so many people out there who see that WWE already gives out 5 hours of free programming each week? Maybe the casual fans don’t care as much about any of the classic programming that is available on there. What I do feel is that WWE Network will take some time to truly gain traction, but the constant reminders about it aren’t going to turn people on to it. It may actually have the opposite effect, and cause people to not want to subscribe to it just to stick it to WWE. I think that the brass at WWE just needs to be patient, and let thing formulate on their own. Pittsburgh wasn’t built in a day, you know! I think that we get more than enough product placement on WWE programming. We’ve had feuds over Sonic hot-dogs, Santino and Adam Rose hawking Twisted Tea, and so on and so forth. Could you imagine this going down during any other sporting event? Maybe I am wrong on this whole thing, maybe the persistence of WWE will pay off. Maybe WWE feels that if they mention the WWE Network enough that people will finally give in and order it just to shut them up! All we need to remember is that we have to power to shut them up…or the low price of just $9.99! follow me on Twitter @whosantcox.