WWE executive Stephanie McMahon spoke at the Fortune Most Powerful Women Summit in Washington, D.C. on Wednesday and spoke about how the WWE Universe has an influence over the WWE product.
According to Stephanie, the company listens to their audience and adjusts based on how they react to the storylines and matches presented to them on a week-to-week basis, noting specifically how fans have an affect on the direction and shape WrestleMania takes each year.
“Our audience tells us what they love, what they don’t like and worse, what they don’t care about. And you have to be listening, and in WWE, yes, we do, we pivot on the fly,” said McMahon. “It’s an advantage that we’re live. We do set our storylines out a year in advance, WrestleMania being our Super Bowl and then we program backwards, but things happen.”
Stephanie continued, “The audience might not be invested in a character that we think they will be invested in for whatever reason. There could be an injury that happens, because we really are an incredible athletic event as well. Anything can happen, so that ability to pivot and twist is really important.”
The “Billion Dollar Princess” also pointed to the NXT brand as another primary example of WWE basing their product on how the fans react to it.
“And when you think about NXT, for example, our audience is actually determining who makes it to the next level, who goes to that main roster,” said Stephanie. “And they know it, they know that they are a part of that person’s success, so they are that much more invested in it. And again, I just think that engagement is really important.”
Check out more from Stephanie McMahon’s speech at the Fortune Most Powerful Women Summit at Fortune.com.