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Amazon, Starbucks gift cards are popular rewards for Viggle users

Users of television loyalty application Viggle have redeemed their points with reward partners such as Amazon and Starbucks more than 375,000 times, pointing to the synergy that can result when mobile and TV are leveraged simultaneously to engage consumers.

Viggle users earn points for checking into TV shows via their mobile device, with the points redeemable for gift cards and other rewards from retailers such as Best Buy, iTunes, Amazon and Starbucks. With as many as 50 percent of consumers using a mobile device while watching TV, second screen apps including Viggle, Shazam and others are quickly gaining steam with both consumers and brands.

“We are really pleased with where the redemptions are at this point,” said Jason Reindorp, vice president of marketing at Viggle, New York. “We have an enthusiastic customer base that is earning and burning through the rewards, in particular gift cards from Amazon and Best Buy are really proving to be very popular.

“It really lets the person convert their points into whatever it is that they especially want,” he said.

Viggle was created by Function(x) Inc., New York.

Battleship promotion
It is common these days to see brands such as Walgreens, Chase and Geico advertise their mobile apps or other mobile offerings in their TV advertising.

However, there is also a growing opportunity for retailers to use the two mediums together to drive brand engagement and loyalty.

For example, Shazam gives marketers a way to leverage their TV spots with voice recognition to add relevant content to an ad and is being embraced by Old Navy and other marketers.

GetGlue works similarly to Viggle and gives consumers an incentive for watching their favorite TV shows.

Viggle has more than 625,000 registered users and the average session length is longer than 93 minutes. Additionally, users have engaged more than 142 million times with various in-app activities.

Viggle is available to download for free from the Apple App Store. The app identifies and automatically checks TV viewers in the content they are watching.

In a recent promotion on Viggle, users can earn points for watching a clip of the Universal Pictures movie Battleship. The points can be redeemed with Fandango for tickets to the movie; when users enter their code with Fandango, they are taken to a Battleship specific page.

Rewarding experience
The rewards portion of the app is important to the success of Viggle.

The app’s initial focus has been on gift cards, music downloads and other rewards that do not require users to wait a long time before they have earned enough points because this is what the company’s research showed consumers want.

Points are associated with the amount of time a viewer spends watching a particular show. There are also check-in bonuses and bonuses for engaging with ads that appear in the app.

However, with users quickly accumulating rewards, Viggle is beginning to experiment with different reward options. For example, it has tested giving users the ability to redeem points to buy a discount on a larger purchase.

Viggle is also beginning to add larger ticket items to the rewards catalog, such as a cruise for two and is investigating sending out targeted deals to users.

The success Viggle has seen is beginning to attract retailers who want to be featured in the rewards catalog.

“Things are definitely moving very quickly in terms of how retailers perceive the value of a program like Viggle,” Mr. Reindorp said. “Rewards partners are seeing the role that Viggle can play in the marketing mix.

“We can take the precision aspect of mobile, combine it with TV-sized audiences and really play this role that historically channel marketing has played,” he said.

“We can target users in the moment, deliver an experience that is contextually relevant and push to download an app that will cement the brand or retailer relationship or give digital coupons to users that they can take into the retail channel and really drive people into the stores.”