Over the past three months, The Daily Wire has added tens of thousands of new paying subscribers — pushing the overall subscriber number for the conservative news and media empire founded by Ben Shapiro, Caleb Robinson, and Jeremy Boreing to 890,000. That puts the company, the subscriber base for which stood just shy of the 600,000 mark back in April, within striking distance of 1 million, a number that might actually be achieved sooner rather than later as a result of a series of updates and announcements that the company laid out on Wednesday, June 29.
Just weeks after the release of The Daily Wire’s latest feature film — the Gina Carano-led western Terror on the Prairepart of the Netflix-like slate of original content that’s now an included Daily Wire subscriber benefit — the company has announced the launch of something new: DailyWire+.
That’s the name of a platform, which goes live immediately, that will house the company’s growing library of video content. All of which is the product of an effort that, by degrees, is pushing the company into a realm far afield from the web-based news site for which it’s long been known.
The Daily Wire’s video content now includes original feature films like Terror on the Prairie, as well as movies and shows geared toward children that are coming soon — in addition to The Daily Wire’s documentary titles. And there’s still more coming to DailyWire+. Along those lines, also on Wednesday, the company announced that psychologist and author Jordan Peterson has signed a multi-year deal with DailyWire+, with the latter set to handle the ad sales and distribution associated with his The Jordan B. Peterson Podcast.
As part of that deal, financial terms of which were not disclosed, DailyWire+ subscribers will get bonus content with every episode of Peterson’s podcast, while subscriber-only specials with Peterson and other guests will also be forthcoming. Peterson’s show will continue on a twice-weekly basis, and his existing podcast and video library are now housed at DailyWire+.
While both of these announcements — launching the new user experience via DailyWire+, and joining forces with Peterson, who has more than 2.8 million followers on Twitter — are distinct, both pieces of news also jointly underscore where Boreing is trying to take the Nashville-based media company next.
“Over the next nine months,” Boreing told me, in advance of a company town hall event in Nashville on June 29, “Our entire infrastructure will be updated to create a state-of-the-art SVOD platform for our rapidly expanding content library. Our security will be enhanced, our subscription funnel will be enhanced, our streaming function will be enhanced, and most importantly, our user experience will be enhanced.”
For that reason, he continued, a new brand in the form of DailyWire+ was required.
“The news website making westerns is already a brand stretch, and no one wants The New York Times to present children’s entertainment,” Boreing said. “So, it’s time for something new. A new brand to house all of this new content. A new brand that is still The Daily Wire, but it’s also movies and documentaries and cartoons. It’s still The Daily Wire, but it’s not just political news and commentary shows — it’s sports and entertainment and philosophy. It’s still The Daily Wire, plus a whole lot more.”
In addition to other components of The Daily Wire’s business, which includes a book publishing imprint, the core editorial operation remains central to the company’s identity. Boreing told me earlier this year, for example, that the company produces some 250 pieces of content a day, including several dozen written articles.
That said, releasing own subscriber-exclusive feature films might seem like a strange endeavor for a company like The Daily Wire — until you consider that other mainstream publishers and news sites are likewise attempting their own versions of this kind of thing. Using non-news offerings, in other words, to attract even more subscribers than a simple news product could do on its own.
The New York Times does it with a product like Wordle, the viral word game that the news publisher said was responsible for bringing “tens of millions” of new users to the Times in the first quarter. The Daily Wire, for its part, does it with movies, books, live events in Nashville, new services like DailyWire+ and presumably more to come.