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The W - Pro Wrestling - WWE Network subscriber numbers
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thecubsfan
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Since: 10.12.01
From: Aurora, IL

Since last post: 1 hour
Last activity: 52 min.
#1 Posted on | Instant Rating: 9.39
I didn't want to derail the WrestleMania thread, but I did want to point out I wrote this last night


    WWE's supposed to announce the number of Network signups tomorrow. They're not letting it out before then, but Meltzer says sponsors were given the impression WWE was happy with the number. Brock beating Undertaker is a creative risk - one that'll hopefully pay off around a Bryan/Brock match at SummerSlam, I'd guess - but WWE Network was a business defining financial risk and it looks like that one paid off.


and it's very wrong. I'm very wrong. WWE says the subscriber number is 667,287, which you may notice is a number less than the one million they wanted to break even. People who know more things than I did thought they'd get it, and thought even 750-850K would be 'good'. So this is not good.

WWE phrases it as "WWE Network On Track To 1 Million Subscribers." There's surely some people who were not comfortable with the technology or just won't have the required high speed internet or device they want to use it on until later, but I'm not quite sure if there's 332,713 of them who didn't figure it out before WrestleMania. Most everyone who wants the WWE Network probably has the WWE Network, that's not enough people, uh oh.

Maybe I'm wrong here too? Are the people (in the US) who haven't gotten the Network who were just waiting to see if WrestleMania would work before putting money done?



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Since: 2.1.02
From: Ottawa, Ontario

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#2 Posted on | Instant Rating: 7.19
Does this include the last minute sign ups to get Wrestlemania, however? I would not be surprised if that number was at least 50-100K higher.



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Since: 2.1.02

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#3 Posted on | Instant Rating: 4.83
This could get ugly after six months. Maybe they add some kind of stay with us bonus.
El Nastio
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Since: 14.1.02
From: Ottawa Ontario, by way of Walkerton

Since last post: 12 days
Last activity: 55 min.
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#4 Posted on | Instant Rating: 3.42
Is the 1 Million they need 1 Million just in the USA, or is that world wide? They haven't technically rolled this out to other countries yet (spoiler alert; that hasn't stopped some of us).



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Since: 18.2.12
From: Philadelphia

Since last post: 17 days
Last activity: 1 day
#5 Posted on
Two key questions is can they keep getting new subscribers after WM season and will the people who got it initially keep it?

However, it's still not available in Canada or overseas so if they can keep the US base re-subscribing you'd think they'd hit there 1 million + number with the non-US Subscribers.
InVerse
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Since: 26.8.02

Since last post: 15 days
Last activity: 2 days
#6 Posted on | Instant Rating: 3.68
They've said all along that they need 1,000,000 by the end of the year to break even. I've never heard anything that said they had to have 1,000,000 by Wrestlemania.

If anything, the fact that the network performed damn near flawlessly for Wrestlemania is going to cause a lot of fence-sitters to subscribe now so that they can watch the rest of the PPVs "for free".
thecubsfan
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Since: 10.12.01
From: Aurora, IL

Since last post: 1 hour
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#7 Posted on | Instant Rating: 9.39
    Originally posted by cfgb
    Does this include the last minute sign ups to get Wrestlemania, however? I would not be surprised if that number was at least 50-100K higher.


It's the number as of this morning. WM signs up would be included.


    Is the 1 Million they need 1 Million just in the USA, or is that world wide?


Just in the US. They actually phrased that 1.5 million would pay for the start up costs and they'd need 1 million from the US to break even. (Here's a slide from their presentation with that break even number.)


    They've said all along that they need 1,000,000 by the end of the year to break even. I've never heard anything that said they had to have 1,000,000 by Wrestlemania.


You are correct about it being by the end of the year, but the idea is if Wrestlemania wasn't enough to get people to buy, there's not a lot more WWE can do. WWE has to increase their subscribers 50% and account for everyone who will unsubscribe five months from now when they've seen all they want out of the back catalog and Royal Rumble is still months away.

There definitely seemed like a significant amount of people who bought the PPV - but some of those people have that network already, and some of those people are in situations where they won't/can't buy the network. There's surely some people who didn't trust the network with a show they absolutely wanted to see, but not nearly as many people are going to absolutely want to see. It's only $10 so that shouldn't be a big barrier to get people to check those shows, but there's been plenty of (good) content on the network besides WrestleMania and those people have sat out so far. The network working is a help but they're going to need to have a lot of tech wary fans to make the numbers work.

I don't think this The End of WWE or anything, but it does change the network going forward. They could run stunts to try to get people to subscribe, or they could reduce the money they spend on the Network (which means less on original programming - maybe less NXT Arrival-type specials.) The sky is not falling but this is going to make this experiment less fun.



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lotjx
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Since: 5.9.08

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#8 Posted on | Instant Rating: 1.51
Well...it seems if you have a 360 you had problems, at least we did and it looks like some other people here as well. Its the number they need to go forward with. SummerSlam is going to be one of the most important PPV in years.



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Now reviewing Shield, Arrow and something called Winter Soldier.
SchippeWreck
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Since: 26.3.03
From: Glendale, CA

Since last post: 23 hours
Last activity: 6 hours
#9 Posted on | Instant Rating: 7.94
This news bums me out, because I genuinely love the Network and want it to be around forever. That said, it's a tough sell to the general public. If you don't like wrestling, why would you get this Network?

I don't think this is the beginning of the end or anything, but I'm curious how they react to the initial low numbers. My guess is they diversify the content over time. Adding WWE Studios films to the library would be one start (though the quality on those would have to improve for people to care). I definitely see them going the way of TLC, History Channel, etc. and producing content that has nothing to do with the original focus of the network.



Everything is awesome.
lotjx
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Since: 5.9.08

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#10 Posted on | Instant Rating: 1.51
Stock fell 20% when it was reported.



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Now reviewing Shield, Arrow and something called Winter Soldier.
Leroy
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Since: 7.2.02
From: Huntington, NY

Since last post: 15 hours
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#11 Posted on | Instant Rating: 7.69
    Originally posted by lotjx
    Stock fell 20% when it was reported.


The DJIA is down over 120 points as of this moment, so certainly the market itself isn't helping.

I kind of think these signup numbers are partially due to the fact that they announced the network way too early. They really should have announced it a week in advance of the launch and given people a chance to impulse purchase it with the bonus of Wrestlemania for this 'one week only'. Had they done that, I'd probably be a subscriber.

The slow burn gave me plenty of time to (partially) watch a Raw or two, not really get overly enthused about what I was seeing and then decide to put my $60 elsewhere. Even if the nostalgia content is really where my interests lie, I had plenty of time to talk myself out of it.
lotjx
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Since: 5.9.08

Since last post: 4 hours
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#12 Posted on | Instant Rating: 1.51
    Originally posted by Leroy
      Originally posted by lotjx
      Stock fell 20% when it was reported.


    The DJIA is down over 120 points as of this moment, so certainly the market itself isn't helping.

    I kind of think these signup numbers are partially due to the fact that they announced the network way too early. They really should have announced it a week in advance of the launch and given people a chance to impulse purchase it with the bonus of Wrestlemania for this 'one week only'. Had they done that, I'd probably be a subscriber.

    The slow burn gave me plenty of time to (partially) watch a Raw or two, not really get overly enthused about what I was seeing and then decide to put my $60 elsewhere. Even if the nostalgia content is really where my interests lie, I had plenty of time to talk myself out of it.


I disagree about giving it less time. They really should have done this for the Rumble or at least the Elimination Chamber to work out any problems. At least give the customer a sense of what they are getting with Mania. I think more people were weary of ordering Mania if the entire thing blow up in their face.





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Now reviewing Shield, Arrow and something called Winter Soldier.
SchippeWreck
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Since: 26.3.03
From: Glendale, CA

Since last post: 23 hours
Last activity: 6 hours
#13 Posted on | Instant Rating: 7.94
I was curious, so I looked up Hulu Plus subscription numbers. It took them one year to reach 1.5 million subscribers. I realize it's apples and oranges because Hulu was already established and was much less of a financial risk. That said, 650,000+ subscribers in a month and a half for something with a much narrower audience (and costs a dollar more a month) has to be SOMEWHAT encouraging, no?



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CRZ
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Since: 9.12.01
From: ミネアポリス

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#14 Posted on | Instant Rating: 9.09
I think the consensus opinion, rightly or wrongly, is that WWE can't get new subscribers whereas Hulu et al can consistently bring in new folks and add (or at least maintain) their base while WWE can only go down from here.

I think yesterday was just what the doctor ordered as far as stream performance and word of mouth will help them go (slightly) higher, but don't know if that will be enough to convince investors who aren't paying as close attention.

WWE stock has already rebounded to 23 off their intraday low of 21, but that's still off an open of 27 after Friday's close just over 28.



Oliver
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Since: 20.6.02
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#15 Posted on | Instant Rating: 4.27
    Originally posted by KingDiamond
    Two key questions is can they keep getting new subscribers after WM season and will the people who got it initially keep it?

    However, it's still not available in Canada or overseas so if they can keep the US base re-subscribing you'd think they'd hit there 1 million + number with the non-US Subscribers.
THIS. This is the issue. I can count about ten people in my circle of friends who would subscribe in a heartbeat should the service be available to Canadians, without having to use alternate IP addresses, American addresses, or whatever's required to convince the WWE one is in the US.



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Dr Unlikely
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Since: 2.1.02

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#16 Posted on | Instant Rating: 9.54
I'd say that, at this point, the domestic PPV buy number for Mania is the most important thing of all. If there are 300K+ people who still bought it via traditional routes, they have an addressable problem: find a way to identify those people, see how many are actually capable of streaming the Network somehow and doing the hard work of reaching out to them to see what it would take to make the leap while building SummerSlam as a true can't-miss supershow to help retain everybody for the $10-a-month price.

If there are fewer than what it would take to make the difference, that's the real worry/problem, as it would seem to indicate that there are only about 750,000 people in America willing to ever pay for your product again.

The corporate mindset response to that is going to be "diversify" by adding non-wrestling content. I could be very wrong here, but I see that as a mistake. I can't see anyone ever buying a wrestling service to watch reruns or non-wrestling reality programming or completely-unrelated movies. It just doesn't make any sense. My assumption - possibly very faulty - is that they DID capture the adult/lapsed/longtime fan market. This is the first time I've paid for anything wrestling-related in a long, long, long time. *My* guess is that it's the kids they need to rope in by getting in front of their parents and selling it as a service to them. Maybe that means more Slam City stuff, but if there's a hole in the puzzle that seems immediately evident to me, it's getting the young kid watching alone who isn't able to translate "I want Wrestlemania!" to mean "and I can help you pay a hell of a lot less through these downloadable and second stream options" to parents who weren't watching along.
dMr
Andouille








Since: 2.11.02
From: Edinburgh, Scotland

Since last post: 56 days
Last activity: 7 hours
#17 Posted on | Instant Rating: 5.98
    Originally posted by thecubsfan
    Just in the US. They actually phrased that 1.5 million would pay for the start up costs and they'd need 1 million from the US to break even. (Here's a slide from their presentation with that break even number.)


Far be it for me to correct the WWE's PowerPoint Guy, but that slide would seem to very much suggest the "break-even" point is less than 1 million. They've assumed cannibalization of "up to $6Om" and applied that figure to all three illustrative examples (one, two and three million subscribers). Potential cannibalization at 3m subscribers would clearly be less than at 1m, meaning less lost revenue, meaning profit is made, meaning yay.

Unless their estimate for the upper end of potential cannibalization is based on 1m subscribers and they just lazily applied it across all three examples, but the way it's presented would suggest not.

Also "break-even" should, as far as I can see, be more accurately phrased as "the point at which they make/lose the same amount of money as they do with their previous business model" but that probably wouldn't fit so well in the wee box in their table.

Tribal Prophet
Andouille








Since: 9.1.02
From: Winnipeg, MB, Canada

Since last post: 16 days
Last activity: 15 hours
#18 Posted on | Instant Rating: 7.14
    Originally posted by dMr
      Originally posted by thecubsfan
      Just in the US. They actually phrased that 1.5 million would pay for the start up costs and they'd need 1 million from the US to break even. (Here's a slide from their presentation with that break even number.)


    Far be it for me to correct the WWE's PowerPoint Guy, but that slide would seem to very much suggest the "break-even" point is less than 1 million. They've assumed cannibalization of "up to $6Om" and applied that figure to all three illustrative examples (one, two and three million subscribers). Potential cannibalization at 3m subscribers would clearly be less than at 1m, meaning less lost revenue, meaning profit is made, meaning yay.

    Unless their estimate for the upper end of potential cannibalization is based on 1m subscribers and they just lazily applied it across all three examples, but the way it's presented would suggest not.

    Also "break-even" should, as far as I can see, be more accurately phrased as "the point at which they make/lose the same amount of money as they do with their previous business model" but that probably wouldn't fit so well in the wee box in their table.




I believe they include start-up expenses with the 1M number needed stats.
lotjx
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Since: 5.9.08

Since last post: 4 hours
Last activity: 4 hours
#19 Posted on | Instant Rating: 1.51
I would assume there is going to be more content and thus the more need for cash. I think if it goes overseas it will hit 1 million, but we have to remember that not all countries wifi is the same. Some are better and some are not. The major concern is as CRZ said the investors. It is getting borderline Roll Out HealthCare.gov treatment in the trades, but there has been some articles going with Cautiously Optimist. As of now, its a bit of a failure, so says Wall Street. Its not a colossal one and nor do I think the network is doomed, just tripped out of the gate thanks to the WWE PR going overboard like they usually do.

Now, the big thing is WWE is probably going to change networks or worse case scenario and what caused some of the stock increase is Vince selling a majority stock to a cable company. Now, the stock will go up either way and may interest more investors. However, the real number to this thing, because right now this is a trial period for everyone, will be after the sixth months over. That will be the number I think people will look at if it gets a second look. Between now and then, it will get more subscribers and will see if it hits a million or just goes up a few thousand.





(edited by lotjx on 7.4.14 1445)


http://comicbookspotlight.wordpress.com/

Now reviewing Shield, Arrow and something called Winter Soldier.
dMr
Andouille








Since: 2.11.02
From: Edinburgh, Scotland

Since last post: 56 days
Last activity: 7 hours
#20 Posted on | Instant Rating: 5.98
    Originally posted by Tribal Prophet
    I believe they include start-up expenses with the 1M number needed stats.


I don't follow. What would that have to do with their "potential cannibalization" figures being (incorrectly IMO) not considered a function of subscriber numbers?

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