May 20, 2015

Coastal Carolina Boosts Student Ticket Revenue 30% YoY with FanMaker Loyalty Program

Coastal Carolina University is a small liberal arts university, located just a few miles from Myrtle Beach, South Carolina. CCU has just under 10,000 enrolled students that support 18 Division I intercollegiate sports teams. With a smaller student body and target market and generally lesser resources than others, Michael Jacobs, Assistant Athletic Director for Ticket Operations and Revenue, has had to get creative with ways to achieve their goals.

Surveys from students promoted they wanted to be rewarded for supporting our teamsMichael Jacobs,Coastal Carolina University

“Surveys from students promoted they wanted to be rewarded for supporting our teams,” Jacobs told FanMaker. “The students also got upset when they would attend a variety of events and come late to one and there was no more giveaway items. They shared stories of students who only came and got a t-shirt and then never came to another game. They asked us to come up with a fair way to reward students who are supporting us and allow a way for us to get better items for those that support a lot.”

Coastal Carolina was suffering from a lack of sustained enthusiasm for all sports on campus. Students were buying tickets to single games here and there but weren’t showing season-long loyalty.

“[We had] good attendance at specific sports and certain events but we were not getting the continuous support we wanted,” Jacobs said. “We did not have a way to incentivize students to support our Olympic sports.”

That’s where the relationship with FanMaker came in.

5,023 students have registered for the program, which represents over half the student body

To this point, CCU’s rewards site has been wildly successful. According to Jacobs, 5,023 students have registered for the program, which represents over half the student body. And since automating ticket sales and pairing that with the rewards system, student ticket revenue has increased over 30 percent.

Our attendance at football grew over 10 percent versus last year and baseball over 200 percentMichael Jacobs,Coastal Carolina University

What’s particularly telling about Jacobs’ and CCU’s success to this point is how they’ve been able to gain such amazing traction and results with such a small target audience. Coastal Carolina faces issues that large universities and their athletics departments don’t have to worry about. Instead of benefitting from constant exposure from media or an enormous devoted following based off of constant turnover of tens of thousands of graduates each year, the CCU athletics department literally has to roll their sleeves up and campaign the good old fashioned way.

For starters, Jacobs uses business cards with information all about — how to register and participate in the rewards program. He and his staff hand these out at student entrances and other events on campus, creating a connection with the student base right then and there. Also, this past summer they made a presentation at student orientation — a place to address students when they’re fresh and transformable, — where Jacobs said a majority of students signed up that day on the spot. Finally, on top of weekly emails, reminding students of the potential rewards they could be gaining points towards, they even set up real estate signs all over campus to raise more awareness.

Coastal Site

Using tried-and-true methods of marketing the site isn’t all Jacobs and his staff are doing, though. They’re taking advantage of being able to use push notifications from the site to keep students engaged and actively thinking about the rewards program, even when they’re not attending a game or buying tickets.

Frequency helps with students and getting them to attend the eventsMichael Jacobs,Coastal Carolina University

In talking to Jacobs, the overlying objective of Coastal Carolina’s athletic department is pretty simple to understand: With a smaller student base and fewer resources, Jacobs is able to reach out to the population in ways that have a special, more personal touch. After all, reaching out to your fans, understanding their wants and needs and delivering on ideas that take all that into account is what it’s all about. is doing exactly that.

Mississippi State Kiosk for Attendance and Registration Using the FanMaker API

Over the past year we’ve developed a very powerful API that lets you easily integrate your FanMaker loyalty program with third parties, and enables all kinds of custom campaigns. Mississippi State came to us wanting to integrate their existing student ID cards with the goal of enabling registration, FERPA compliance, and attendance check ins. The Bulldogs had already already purchased an iPad based kiosk system, so the natural solution was to use our API to build a custom interface for the iPads, and after a few weeks the Hail State Rewards Kiosk was born. / continue reading

May 11, 2015

Introducing Micro Surveys – Valuable Data Collection, one Question at a Time

You can now build targeted surveys, and reward members for filling them out. Members use the mobile app to answer, and they are presented with one question at a time – We call them Micro Surveys, here is what one looks like.

FanMaker micro surveys

When members answer the questions, the results flow into a new dashboard. You can see the response rate and effectiveness for each survey, and even drill down to each question’s results. Demographic questions are mapped directly into the fanmaker system, and your custom question results are downloadable at any time.

survey results

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May 1, 2015

The Winner of the Apple Watch is…

Congratulations to Rob Axline, Coordinator of Athletic Marketing & Promotions at Northern Kentucky University for winning the Rob AxlineApril Apple Watch contest. Out of over 300 entries Rob was randomly selected as the winner. Thanks to everyone for participating and following best practices to earn points. Stay tuned for more prizes as the summer moves on!

That might be the first thing I’ve ever won in my life.Rob Axline,Northern Kentucky University

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April 30, 2015

Client Spotlight: How Maryland used M Rewards to add Weight & Value to Attendance Loyalty

Marty Summa - MarylandMarty Summa Jr. is the Assistant Director in Social & Digital Media for the University of Maryland’s athletic department. He oversees all of the social media accounts associated with Maryland athletics as well as producing specialized day-to-day content for the Maryland faithful. Summa understands that being active and engaged on social media is the most convenient way to build trust with the Terrapins fan base.

“We wanted to show appreciation to our long-time season ticket holders and dedicated students that attend a majority of our events,” Summa said. “With FanMaker there is now weight to fans [attending the games].”

With FanMaker there is now weight to fans [attending the games].Marty Summa Jr. is the Assistant Director in Social & Digital Media

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April 23, 2015

New Event Calendar View and Member Delete Functions

We are in the process of major event/attendance system updates and will be trickling out small user interface improvements as a part of it. This week we updated the schedule admin with a calendar view, which should make managing your schedule even easier. / continue reading

April 10, 2015

FanMaker Client Rewards Launches : Win an Apple Watch!

We are so happy to announce FanMaker Client Rewards, a rewards program for site admins! Earn points and redeem them for contest entries and prizes. For our first prize we are giving away an Apple Watch Sport edition on April 30th, 2015 (a $399 value, we pre-ordered, so you’ll be the first to have it, no waiting til summer). / continue reading

April 9, 2015

Easy Member Profile Editing

Sometimes you need to edit or fix a single users information – and now you can! On the new member profile page in the admin you can now click to edit the following:

  • Email address
  • First Name
  • Last Name
  • Member ID
  • Student ID
  • Ticketmaster ID
  • PID, and other custom IDs you have loaded

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Client Spotlight: Nissan Motorsport Australia Paid Membership

One of our newest Australian clients is doing some exciting things with the FanMaker platform. In addition to offering free rewards memberships, Nissan NISMO Rewards is selling premium memberships that include extra perks and special prizes. / continue reading

April 2, 2015

Dashboard Provides At-A-Glance Summary of Your Loyalty Program

Now when you log into the FanMaker admin you will be greeted with an all new Dashboard tab. The goal of the dashboard is to give an at-a-glance summary of the health of your loyalty program.

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