There’s no question that, when it comes to creating buzz around otherwise inconsequential boxing matches, Jake Paul has delivered the goods. His bouts against Nate Robinson and Ben Askren seemed to grab large audiences of boxing & MMA fans as well as viewers that otherwise take little to no interest in combat sports.
As MMA Mania’s Shakiel Mahjouri recently highlighted, former UFC welterweight champion Tyron Woodley has apparently never generated as much interest as he is right now, heading into his boxing debut against the former Disney star and YouTube personality. That includes his two-year run as a title holder in MMA’s most prestigious organization.
Interest in Tyron Woodley has NEVER been as high as it is for his @JakePaul fight. These Google Trends date back to his UFC debut in 2013. The next highest peak was for his Darren Till fight in Sept. 2018, which the Paul fight has more than doubled #PaulWoodley pic.twitter.com/xZazECpD5y— Shakiel Mahjouri (@Shak_Fu) August 25, 2021
Whether it’s a desire to see Paul lose or just the constant stream of ridiculous nonsense he brings to the public eye, whatever it is it seems to be working. For his part, Paul credits his handle on the “digital age of marketing.” Something he claims – in a recent interview with our Combat Culture YouTube channel we collaborate with MMA Mania on – that the older generation of promoters, like Dana White, are lacking.
“Men lie, women lie, but numbers don’t. That’s why I think I’ve become the face of the fight game. Just because of the numbers. I can’t be denied. I’m bringing the heat. I’m bringing the attention,” Paul explained. “Statistics like that just go to show you that when I fight somebody, they become famous. They become a star for a second. People start to care about them. The couple of million people who don’t like Jake Paul and what to see me lose, they’re the ones who start to support whoever I’m fighting next.
“That’s what we’re saying here with Tyron. This is the new digital age of marketing, social media clicks, attention, content and the old guys, the Dana Whites, the UFCs, can’t move as fast. These are big companies who don’t really know how to get into the weeds and promote. It’s a new era. You’re seeing that from crypto and NFTs, all the way to boxing. People are consuming differently. People are paying for things differently. It’s quite literally in with the new and out with the old.”
To Paul’s point (or perhaps a counter to it) the UFC recently landed a massive sponsorship deal with crypto-currency website crypto.com. And the promotion has also recently partnered with trading card company Panini America, to produce custom UFC NFTs. Dana White may not have been able to generate the interest in Woodley that Paul has, but the Endeavor owned company definitely isn’t ignoring these new avenues of marketing and revenue.
Paul vs. Woodley takes place this Sunday, August 29th, in Cleveland, OH. Apart from the cruiserweight headliner, the card will feature a women’s featherweight title fight between WBO & WBC champion Amanda Serrano & challenger Yamileth Mercado. Stay tuned to Bloody Elbow for live results and coverage of the fight card.