Officials for the Philadelphia Phillies want to enhance the customer experience in a big way.
As a result, they partnered with Givex, the global cloud-based customer engagement solution that encompasses leading loyalty and gift card solutions.
Givex will expand its functionality with the Philadelphia Phillies and Major League Baseball (MLB) in the 2018 season to build on successful fan engagement events held during the 2017 season. The Phillies have had a five-year relationship with Givex’s Uptix mobile ticketing platform, which provides stored value that can be sent directly to fans on their mobile devices.
Loyalty360 caught up with Debbi Blackburn, Vice President of Business Development for Givex, to find out how the platform can enhance the customer experience for Phillies fans.
How does Uptix help to enhance the customer/fan experience for the Phillies, and other teams, to elevate brand/team loyalty?
Blackburn: When Givex created Uptix, we focused on making it easy for teams and venues to give compelling rewards to their fans and also offer instant promotions for more engaging and exciting gameday experiences. Our clients, like the Phillies, receive comprehensive real-time data on fan behavior as they use Uptix loaded tickets, helping to better target and engage with fans. Operating the platform is simple for the teams, stadium operators, and event managers we work with because Uptix allows them to add value directly onto the existing ticket barcode, which fans already use to enter the venue.
Customer experience is seen as the great differentiator among loyalty marketers today. How does this approach help teams/venues/event managers to elevate the customer experience and its impact on customer engagement/customer loyalty?
Blackburn: Using Uptix, clients can load money, offers, and rewards onto the same tickets that fans use to enter the venue. While it starts with tickets, this capability also applies to mobile apps, RFID bracelets, cards, or any other medium. Fans can scan their barcodes at the venue to use the stored value to pay for concessions or merchandise. Not only is this convenient and rewarding for fans, but when combined with ticket promotions and special offers, Uptix loaded tickets also serve as a gameday loyalty program.
To redeem the stored value and rewards, fans must scan their tickets. This enables teams and venues to collect data right at the point of purchase about reward effectiveness and what fans are buying. It also allows teams like the Phillies to track these patterns over time, giving new insight into fan behavior so that loyalty programs can be better tailored to suit their needs.
How has technology shifted the focus as it relates to customer experience/customer experience/brand loyalty? What role does Uptix play in that shift?
Blackburn: It’s all about digital complementing the in-game experience. Fans want to engage with teams and players over social media, get exclusive videos and other content, and load tickets onto their smartphones. Uptix helps teams to make these interactions more rewarding. Loading rewards onto barcodes is the most convenient way for fans to use and enjoy them. For the first time, technology also now allows teams to track fan behavior and the effectiveness of their marketing tactics and rewards.
When it comes to using Uptix to help provide memorable fan experiences, what are you most proud of?
Blackburn: Every fan has those truly special games or moments that live on in their minds: The retiring of a jersey number, the breaking of a world record, or the end of a decades-long curse. Uptix isn’t the main attraction in those moments. But when teams want to take the excitement and drama of those games and put them into the hands of the fans in an interactive, engaging way, Uptix provides them with a unique set of tools to do it, inspiring fans to experience their favorite events in a new way, and pushing loyalty programs to the next level in the process.
What is ahead for the future of Uptix, building on this partnership with the Phillies to integrate with other Major League teams?
Blackburn: By building loyalty programs for the Phillies, and other teams, we’ve gained valuable lessons and insight that has helped to bring other Major League teams on board with loaded ticket technology. We’ve used these insights to develop more turnkey offerings and enable teams to easily create more tailored experiences to engage fans and reward them for their loyalty.