Saturday, November 10, 2012

World Wrestling Entertainment - Transmedia Conglomerate

When I think multimedia movies and TV shows come to mind, a form on entertainment whose main goal isn't to sell me and idea or product rather to entertain me. When I think of transmedia I think different platforms trying to sell me on ONE thing, usually mainstream products and ideas come to mind. In modern times such as today Apple is probably the leader in transmedia with their many various methods of reaching out to potential and returning buyers. Their product is good, they know that, and they know that all they need is to advertise their product using the right methods and they can make an easy sale. While Apple is the most common source of transmedia it doesn't embrace the possibilities of transmedia to its fullest potential. The company that does however is World Wrestling Entertainment.

Let's be honest, not a lot of people watch wrestling recreationally as they would any other sport or event. The reason being is that it's dubbed "fake" due to their elaborate storylines and characters. This is part of the reason that World Wrestling Entertainment (WWE) aims at children as their target audience versus adults. Many of the adults, such as myself, have been watching wrestling since our youth and don't give it up easily now because it has become somewhat of a tradition. When you take that aspect of adults that watch based on "tradition" and children that watch for the crazy characters, you get multiple levels of exploitation as a company.

[Courtesy of World Wrestling Entertainment]

When it comes to transmedia, WWE is a company that has its foot through many doors. Aside from their weekly wrestling shows and pay-per-views (which is their primary product); they also have video games, toys, books, feature films, character specific DVDs, music, collectibles, apparel, and apps. Chris Crum, a reporter for says the following in regards to WWE's apps:

WWE has launched a new mobile app for iOS and Android, giving fans access to a “second screen TV companion experience,” which activates during Monday Night Raw. The app features live polls and content during that time. The app also comes with exclusive videos and content, access to the social media streams for every WWE “Superstar” and “Diva,” as well as news from It also takes advantage of users’ location to provide access to tickets purchasing for local events, and other WWE shopping.

As I stated before, WWE is not a company whose main goal is to attract new buyers of their product like Apple; they seek to cater to the fans that have followed them for years on end. In an effort to make themselves more relevant to the time, the company has taken to a more modern approach to getting their product out there to their fans; social media. Almost every wrestler, past and present, has a Twitter and Facebook with millions of fans following them. As a company, WWE knows that their younger fans are more attached to the internet today than their fans were back in the 80s and 90s. Given that, it only seems smart for WWE to embrace social media with open arms.

[Courtesy of World Wrestling Entertainment]

One of the major transmedia aspects of WWE is WWE Studios, which is a branch of the company whose prime focus is to make feature films and DVDs using WWE wrestlers. As an older generation fan, I hate these things; but I notice that the younger generation of fans love watching their favorite wrestlers in movies and TV shows. Two of the biggest stars that WWE exploits are The Rock (no picture needed) and John Cena (the guys in pink above). Their fandom reaches millions, and when that happens they become the face of the company charged with pushing the WWE product forward through many forms of social media and multimedia.

For any company, transmedia is a major aspect. You have to get your product out there in any way you can. Whether you're Apple or WWE, your lifeblood is your fanbase that purchase your product over and over again. In this aspect and in this time, different forms of media are the best way to get noticed and stay relevant. WWE proves this daily by staying so dedicated to their product and their fans that they evolve with the times and move forward.

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