AEW will be legitimate competition for WWE. They will be on TNT in the Fall and reach a fan base that is bigger than WWE in some parts of the world. There are a lot of things WWE needs to watch out for, but one statistic is reportedly concerning them the most.
The Wrestling Observer Newsletter noted that WWE made such creative changes like bringing in Paul Heyman and Eric Bischoff out of a defensive measure for many reasons. However, one of the most concerning things about AEW is their ability to draw in new, non-WWE fans. It is reported that “most notably the All Out ticket sale demand in Chicago, have led to the moves.”
Some in WWE are reportedly “in denial about AEW,” however, one source in WWE said that the number of non-WWE fans AEW is reaching is the most concerning part of all.
WWE doesn’t have a lot of people who purchase pay-per-views at this point, but of those fans who do purchase WWE pay-per-views, almost none of them bought Double Or Nothing. This is pointing toward a new fan base being formed which is not something WWE needs.
The company has a couple beliefs about where those non-WWE wrestling fans might be coming from, but it seems to be a wave of concerning interest for WWE.
The belief is they come from two camps, those who despise WWE and want an alternative, and a new fan base they’ve created through social media and one-on-one marketing through appearances that is a younger audience that doesn’t care enough about WWE to hate it.
We will have to see how WWE combats this new interest in the competition. These might not be fans that WWE can win back because they might have never had them in the first place. Therefore, it could take some very quick thinking and some even more daring creative decisions.