Basketball fans following the 2013 National Basketball Association Playoffs will now have a chance to reap rewards for their viewing loyalty.
Basketball fans following the 2013 National Basketball Association Playoffs will now have a chance to reap rewards for their viewing loyalty. Starting with the Nets versus Bulls game this weekend, fans who check into the Playoff and Finals games using a free mobile app from Viggle will be eligible for bonus points that give them discounts on well-known brands as well as on gear from the NBA Store.
"We are very excited to be partnering with the NBA," says Greg Consiglio, president and COO of Viggle, who notes that this is the first sports league to officially cooperate with the company. "This is the type of programming that we feel lends itself to Viggle, because there is a lot of social activity around sports."
The free mobile app, available on iPhone and Android, uses audio verification technology to recognize which shows viewers are watching. It rewards them for checking into their favorite TV shows with discounts at popular retailers including Best Buy, Starbucks, Apple, Spotify, Papa John's, Fandango, Hulu Plus, and Groupon.
The more involved viewers get - answering questions about the show in real time, for example, or chatting with other viewers - the more points they can redeem. Fans earn one point per minute for shows they check into.
Although viewers can check into any TV show with Viggle, the company changes the lineup of featured shows offering extra bonus points on a 24-hour basis, Consiglio says.
"Viggle serves as a key tune-in and awareness reminder for the show," adds Consiglio. The Viggle Guide lets users see the TV schedule and then set reminders for what they want to watch, which are sent via email or text message.
Networks pay Viggle in its efforts to boost awareness and ratings for the show, while brands get to expose consumers to their products. In the process, Viggle also gathers key data on viewing habits, which it delivers back to the networks.
For the NBA Playoffs, which enter round two on Monday, Viggle users are being encouraged to take part in the Playoff Quest, which will earn them +200 bonus points and 10 percent off orders of $50 or more at the NBA Store.
Users need to check the "What's On" section of the app every day and find the Playoff Quest badge. Bonuses will go to those who check into at least five of the eight selected games. The bonus points will be fulfilled by June 1, the company said.
The games serve to drive up viewing minutes and make sure that viewers are truly engaged. Viggle has some two million users and Consiglio says that viewers who take part in the trivia quiz generally engage for around 46 minutes with the program.
The NBA games that feature the chance to earn rewards and discounts will only be revealed on the day of the game. Interacting with other NBA fans via Viggle's chat feature and sharing a favorite NBA team over social media will also give viewers a chance to receive additional Viggle bonus points.
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Mary Lisbeth D'Amico is a freelance writer based in Jersey City who frequently covers digital marketing, social media, tech startups, and venture capital. She has contributed to a wide range of publications including The Wall Street Journal, Business Week, Red Herring, and Real Deals. Find her on Twitter at @mldamico.
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