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Overview


Overview


OBJECTIVE

Eight-year-old Connor Michalek meets WWE Superstar Daniel Bryan at a WWE Live Event in Pittsburgh, Pa. in early 2014.

Eight-year-old Connor Michalek meets WWE Superstar Daniel Bryan at a WWE Live Event in Pittsburgh, Pa. in early 2014.

WWE Chief Brand Officer Stephanie McMahon and her husband WWE Executive of Talent, Live Events and Creative Paul “Triple H” Levesque are strong supporters of pediatric cancer care and research at Children’s Hospital of Pittsburgh of UPMC. Stephanie and Paul became involved with Children’s Hospital in 2014, when they met WWE fan Connor Michalek.

Connor, 8, was battling medulloblastoma, a rare tumor that affects the brain and spinal cord. Connor formed a special connection with Stephanie and Paul, as well as numerous WWE Superstars and Divas, while attending WWE events with his family in early 2014, including WWE WrestleMania 30 in New Orleans. 

When Connor lost his battle with medulloblastoma in April 2014, Stephanie and Paul decided to honor him by creating Connor’s Cure, a fund within Children’s Foundation at Children’s Hospital of Pittsburgh that supports brain tumor research.

Connor’s Cure supports research by Ian F. Pollack, M.D., chief, Pediatric Neurosurgery in the Brain Care Institute at Children’s Hospital of Pittsburgh, including laboratory-based research and a vaccine-based immunotherapy research. Dr. Pollack is examining the efficacy of a unique immunotherapy that treats the tumor using a vaccine not entirely unlike the sort of vaccines most of us are familiar with, such as the tetanus or polio vaccines.

The Connor's Cure campaign had two primary objectives:

  • Raise overall awareness for pediatric cancer.
  • Raise funds for Connor’s Cure to support pediatric cancer research at the Children’s Hospital of Pittsburgh.
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About Connor


About Connor


WWE supported Pediatric Cancer Awareness Month all through September. The WWE Universe paid tribute to Connor Michalek, showing their support for pediatric cancer research with their donations to Connor's Cure.

STRATEGY & EXECUTION

In order to effectively achieve the campaign objectives, WWE’s strategy was an integrated, 360 degree approach that utilized all of the company’s global assets.  These included WWE Network and WWE’s television programming, digital and social platforms, live events, merchandise sales, WWE talent, employee communications and media relations. 

WWE assets provided a global platform for Connor’s Cure to deliver key messages regarding pediatric cancer education and resources.

WWE’s execution of this campaign was fully integrated throughout its global assets. Specific campaign tactics included:

Merchandise Sales:

WWE created “Connor’s Cure” bracelets in support of Connor’s Cure and Pediatric Cancer Awareness Month. 

Fans were able to purchase the bracelets at wweshop.com and all live events with 100% of the proceeds going to support Connor’s Cure.

Television Integration:

In September, Connor’s Cure was integrated into WWE flagship programming RAW and SmackDown that air on USA Network and SyFy respectively.  In total, WWE has nearly 14 million weekly viewers.

On Monday, September 14 and Thursday, September 17, WWE’s flagship programs Monday Night Raw and SmackDown “Went Gold” in support of Connor’s Cure and Pediatric Cancer Awareness Month.  “Going Gold” consisted of

  • Middle ring rope turned gold.
  • Connor’s Cure logo featured on the video boards, entrance ramp and digital ring board for maximum on-air visibility.
  • All WWE on-air talent, executives and staff  wore Connor’s Cure stickers/bracelets.
  • Viewer tweets displayed in the lower third scroll that pertained to Connor’s Cure.

WWE Network Integration

Beginning Tuesday, September 1-Wednesday, September 30, WWE Network aired public service announcements featuring WWE Superstars and Divas in support of Connor’s Cure and pediatric cancer awareness month.

WWE Live Event Integration:

Public service announcements were also shown during all 18 live events in the month of September.

WWE Social Media Integration

Stephanie McMahon, Daniel Bryan, The New Day, former "Daily Show" host Jon Stewart and many more accept Ellen DeGeneres' "Just Keep Dancing" Challenge to raise awareness for pediatric cancer.

WWE has more than half a billion social media followers.

For the first time, WWE launched a Twibbon promotion encouraging the WWE Universe to “Go Gold” by changing their Twitter profile pictures gold.

  • WWE CEO Vince McMahon, WWE Chief Brand Officer Stephanie McMahon, WWE Executive Vice President of Talent, Live Events and Creative Paul “Triple H” Levesque, WWE Superstar John Cena and more than 40 other WWE and NXT Superstars and Divas changed their profile pictures.
  • Additionally, nearly 140K people “Went Gold” and changed their twitter profile pictures in support of Connor’s Cure and Pediatric Cancer Awareness Month.

 Frequent tweets from WWE Superstars and Divas in support of Connor’s Cure and Pediatric Cancer Awareness Month throughout the month of September.

#CONNORSTRONG: WWE Executive Vice President of Talent, Live Events and Creative Paul “Triple H” Levesque poses with his Connor's Cure bracelet on his Twitter and Instagram accounts. 

#CONNORSTRONG: WWE Executive Vice President of Talent, Live Events and Creative Paul “Triple H” Levesque poses with his Connor's Cure bracelet on his Twitter and Instagram accounts. 

WWE cross-promoted Connor’s Cure with Ellen Degeneres’s #JustKeepDancing initiative where fans posted videos of themselves dancing to support pediatric cancer awareness. WWE talent who participated in the #JustKeepDancing initiative included:

  •  WWE Chief Brand Officer Stephanie McMahon
  • WWE Executive Vice President of Talent, Live Events and Creative Paul “Triple H” Levesque
  • WWE Superstar Daniel Bryan
  • WWE Superstars The New Day (Big E, Kofi Kingston and Xavier Woods)
  • WWE Diva Sasha Banks
  • WWE Superstar The Miz
  • WWE Superstar the Big Show
  • WWE announcer Renee Young
  • WWE Diva Paige
  • WWE Diva Natalya
  • WWE Divas The Bella Twins

WWE Digital Media Integration:

  • Connor’s Cure was promoted on WWE’s Times Square Billboard 14 times during the month of September.
  • WWE.com homepage promotion/takeover.
  • WWEcommunity.com homepage promotion/takeover.
  • Video package on WWE.com to promote Connor’s Cure/Pediatric Cancer Awareness Month.
  • Featured content on WWEcommunity.com throughout the month of September.
  • WWE App promotion.
  • Email blast to WWE Universe. (fan database)

Employee Communication Integration

WWE activated this campaign with its more than 800 employees and portfolio of business partners.

  • Gold bracelets and promotional post card distributed to all employees.
  • Email communication with Connor’s Cure details distributed to all employees.

Media Relations:

  •  Press Release detailing Connor’s Cure
  • Connor’s Cure media coverage included:
    • Elvis Duran and the Morning Show
    • Time
    •  ESPN
    • Sports Illustrated
    • USA Today
    • FOX Sports
    • Muscle & Fitness
    • OK! Magazine
    •  Local Pittsburgh media
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The Warrior Award


The Warrior Award


THE WARRIOR AWARD

WWE named Connor Michalek the first-ever recipient of The Warrior Award, presented each year at the WWE Hall of Fame Induction Ceremony.

The Warrior Award is given to someone who has exhibited unwavering strength and perseverance, and who lives life with the courage and compassion that embodies the indomitable spirit of WWE Hall of Famer, The Ultimate Warrior. The award was presented by The Ultimate Warrior’s widow, Dana Warrior, and WWE Superstar Daniel Bryan™ to Steve Michalek, Connor’s father.

The WWE Hall of Fame Induction Ceremony aired live on Saturday, March 28 on WWE Network at 8 p.m. ET. USA Network also broadcasted a one-hour special highlighting the ceremony on Monday, March 30.


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Our Results


Our Results


OUR RESULTS

 Led by WWE Chief Brand officer Stephanie McMahon, WWE utilized its global assets including WWE Network, TV, Live Events, and digital and social media to raise awareness and funds for Connor’s Cure. 

To date, WWE has raised more than $850,000 for Connor’s Cure and the Children’s Hospital of Pittsburgh.  WWE raised more than $200,000 and generated over 1 billion media impressions during Pediatric Cancer Awareness Month this September.

Additional campaign results can be found below:

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  • WWE generated nearly $2.7 million (in-kind media, earned media and activation support) in support of Connor’s Cure and Pediatric Cancer Awareness Month. 
  • WWE’s first-ever Tribbon campaign, encouraging the WWE Universe (fan base) to “Go Gold” resulted in nearly 140,000 people “Going Gold” for Connor’s Cure and Pediatric Cancer Awareness Month, generating more than 677 million impressions socially.
  • Additionally, WWE generated more than 46 million impressions during the cross-promotion with Ellen Degeneres’s #JustKeepDancing initiative.
  • Connor’s Cure social promotion was one of the most engaging WWE campaigns to date with 827K engagements across all platforms.  On their own, WWE fans engaged with Connor’s Cure by posting pictures with the bracelet, photo montages and personalized art that they created and shared.
  • WWE sold nearly 17,000 bracelets in the month of September through WWEshop.com and in-venue sales raising $84,000 in funds. 
  • Nearly 10 million viewers were reached through broadcast support, including announcer mentions, lower thirds, packages and airings of WWE-produced PSAs during the month of September.
  • An additional 50,000 viewers were reached through WWE Network during the month of September .
  • An additional 165,000 people were exposed to PSA’s through all 18 live events in the month of September.
  • WWE.com and WWECommunity.com digital media efforts generated nearly 5 million impressions.
  • 5 million people were reached through WWE’s Times Square Billboard advertisements that ran 14 times during the month of December.
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About WWE


About WWE


ABOUT WWE

WWE, a publicly traded company (NYSE: WWE), is an integrated media organization and recognized leader in global entertainment.

The company consists of a portfolio of businesses that create and deliver original content 52 weeks a year to a global audience. WWE is committed to family friendly entertainment on its television programming, pay-per-view, digital media and publishing platforms.

WWE programming reaches more than 650 million homes worldwide in 35 languages. WWE Network, the first-ever 24/7 over-the-top premium network that includes all 12 live pay-per-views, scheduled programming and a massive video-on-demand library, is currently available in more than 170 countries.

The company is headquartered in Stamford, Conn., with offices in New York, Los Angeles, London, Mexico City, Mumbai, Shanghai, Singapore, Dubai, Munich and Tokyo. Additional information on WWE (NYSE: WWE) can be found at wwe.com and corporate.wwe.com. For information on our global activities, go to http://www.wwe.com/worldwide/.