Social Media influencer Logan Paul is the latest celebrity to throw in with WWE.
Paul announced Thursday afternoon on his various social media platforms that he’s signed with WWE and shared a picture taken with Triple H and Stephanie McMahon at WWE Headquarters.
Ariel Helwani reported that Paul signed a multi-year deal that calls for the celebrity boxer to work an undisclosed number of premium live events (pay-per-view) in 2022 and 2023. This news comes after Paul confirmed he was training for an in-ring return to wrestling.
Paul made several appearances on WWE television before his debut match at WrestleMania 38 in April, where he teamed with The Miz to defeat Rey Mysterio and Dominik Mysterio. The Miz turned on Paul following their victory and blindsided him with the Skull Crushing Finale.
After signing the contract, Paul stated he didn’t sign the contract to team with Miz but to face him at SummerSlam. The Miz got the ball rolling on Raw, where he claimed he and Paul made up and would team up once again.
Logan Paul is a natural athlete with a massive YouTube following. Not only did he go the distance with an aging Floyd Mayweather, but he also impressed many with his performance at WrestleMania. Paul exhibited a lot of poise and ring awareness.
Some fans don’t want Paul anywhere near a WWE ring. The only thing enthusiast hates more than a part-time wrestler who paid their dues is a celebrity part-timer. As a diehard fan, I’m long past the days of getting angry over such matters.
WWE was built on the foundation of celebrity infusion. The eye-rolling reluctance to wrestling is lower than ever. It’s cool to see someone like Logan Paul, who has a knack for the profession and has a plethora of options, want to spend more time in the squared circle.
In the abstract, WWE signing Logan Paul is a good business move, but the juice might not be worth the squeeze in the big picture. According to YouTube statistics, 49% of Paul’s demographic is under the age of 24, with 40% of them being 18 years old.
However, that tally is disputed as several articles state that Paul’s viewership is younger, from age 8 – 14. When Paul was asked about this in an interview for Mashable, Paul said, “I’m my own demographic.” The article makes a case that Paul knows his viewers are younger than the 20-somethings he boasts.
While WWE’s ratings have improved in recent weeks, they still struggle in the two age ranges of Logan Paul’s demographic. It’s the smart play to bring in someone who has clout with a specific audience. Still, it does not guarantee that Paul will garner the desired result.
Crossover stars don’t always payoff in new arenas.
Playwright Lin Manuel Miranda is a massive star due to his Broadway hit, Hamilton. His guest host spot on Saturday Night Live garnered a 12-year ratings high. However, two films that heavily marketed his involvement, Mary Poppins Returns and In the Heights, weren’t the strongest performers at the box office, with the latter a commercial disappointment.
The studios bet on Miranda drawing the bulk of his large fandom, which didn’t work. People don’t always want to see their favorite stars in unfamiliar territory. SNL closely resembles the work Miranda is famously known for. Poppins and Heights weren’t bad projects, but Miranda’s audience didn’t care enough to support them with their wallets.
Will Logan Paul bring more viewers to WWE?
Paul will raise WWE’s profile to a degree as a recognizable face on their talent roster. His daily vlogs, however, are a stark contrast to WWE’s stale scripted content. If WWE’s content were more in line with the videos Paul produces, the pairing would be more peanut butter and jelly and less square peg round hole.