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San Francisco 49ers Target Year-Round Football Fanatics With Rewards Program

Plans for more digital in-stadium activations

The San Francisco 49ers are betting that sports fans will have a big appetite for digital year round with the launch of a new rewards program today.

Fans rack up points—or “yards”—by completing different tasks leading up to and during football season such as watching videos or reading articles on the team’s site or by “liking” and following Facebook and Twitter accounts. These points can then be redeemed for prizes including signed gear or trips to games. The team will also use the rankings to set up a waiting list of single-game tickets for the season.

The 49ers plan to promote the Faithful 49 program through banners, pre-roll ads and call-to-actions on its own site and through social media.

Esurance has signed on as the program’s car, motorcycle, homeowners and renter insurance sponsor for the new program, which includes mobile and social activations. In-stadium digital signage and calls-to-action on the team’s website and mobile app will be used as part of the sponsorship.

Social media will also be included in Esurance’s sponsorship. The insurance brand proved that it has some serious Twitter skills during this year’s Super Bowl (its Super Bowl stunt claimed 5.4 million hashtag entries for a sweepstakes within 36 hours) so it wouldn’t be a complete shocker if this program bodes well for the brand on social media.

The program is part of a bigger marketing push that will be unveiled this fall when the 49ers begin playing in the new Levi’s Stadium. Digital is expected to play a big role in the Santa Clara, Calif., venue, which will also include a new mobile in-stadium app. The app will include mobile payments and rewards that will be integrated into the Faithful 49 program.

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