USA Swimming Dives into an RFID-Based Fan Engagement
FISH Technologies’ RFID-enabled social media tool enabled fans this summer to explore the USA Swimming Aqua Zone experience outside the U.S. Olympic swimming trials at the CenturyLink Center in Omaha, NE, like never before. Aqua Zone offered fans the chance to get autographs and pictures taken with Olympic swimming champions, compete in a Michael Phelps Swim Spa Challenge, race in a Mutual of Omaha “simulator,” explore the AT&T Fan Zone and more.
With the tool, which was branded to Visa and called the Visa Aqua Badge, fans could share their experiences, photos and activities on their Facebook pages via a simple scan. Fans registered the badge to Facebook and/or email accounts using their mobile phones or onsite PCs. Once they authorized their Facebook profile, they agreed to share their Facebook data, including all demographic information, and email address. The fans’ profile data was automatically shared between USA Swimming and the brand sponsor each time they tapped their credential on “tap towers” distributed throughout the event at sponsor activations. Automatic Facebook photo post stations deployed throughout the venue allowed fans to post branded photos to their Facebook walls in real time.
Sponsor brand ambassadors registered guests, activated the badges, delivered content and facilitated likes and check-ins via RFID Read/Write capable tablets. Brands leveraged fan data to created custom experiences such as interactive games where a guest taps the credential to trigger a competition where their name and scores are automatically delivered to a leader board. The Visa Aqua Badge reduced the “environmental friction” caused when individual brand sponsors deploy their own unique data collection process, which creates bottlenecks and limits the number of activations a fan is able or willing to engage.
Attendees spent less time filling out paper and electronic forms as they engaged with brand sponsors. Through social media, fans organically amplified their engagements with the brand sponsors and USA Swimming. Using a single credential decreased staff and technology expenses for brand sponsors. Understanding the impact of specific inputs such as footprint size, promotions, experiences and other data positioned USA Swimming as a strategic partner with brand sponsors and enhanced their ability to selectively attract and engage specific demographic targets. The badge provided real-time dashboards and post-event reporting that allowed stakeholders to better understand the efficacy of their spend, and it improved measurable ROI by engaging more fans and providing better actionable data and linked engagements to social media campaigns that drove fans and the global community on Facebook to the point of sale.
In other words, they created quite a splash.