Quinnipiac Athletics introduces ‘Bobcat Rewards’ to incentivize attending sporting events

Cameron Levasseur and Ethan Hurwitz

Fans attending Quinnipiac University athletic and other on-campus events now have the chance to gain more out of the experience through a new mobile app that gives attendees the opportunity to earn rewards for their attendance. 

Bobcat Rewards, an app launched on iOS and Android software on Aug. 17, is designed to incentivize students to attend Quinnipiac sporting events by giving them points for checking in at the games. These points can be exchanged on the app for prizes, such as team merchandise and unique experiences, according to the athletics website. 

Prizes on the Bobcat Rewards app include tickets to the Feb. 17, men’s hockey game against Yale University. (Peyton McKenzie)

Alex Goyette, Quinnipiac Athletics’ assistant director for marketing and fan engagement, created the app prior to the start of the fall semester to reward devoted Quinnipiac fans. 

“One of the first things I wanted to do was to reward our fans who are at every single game and at least guarantee them a ticket to the Yale game,” Goyette said. “We have people going to every single home game … and there’s still the same chance of going to our biggest game of the year as everyone else. It doesn’t seem fair.” 

Many students expressed getting the app for tickets to the Feb. 17, game, as the men’s hockey game against in-state rival Yale University is a difficult ticket to acquire come game week. 

Goyette said he wanted to build a program that was centered around the ticket, not the other way around. So far, he has seen a lot of app usage because of the incentive. 

“It was a two-way street of … how do we reward those already coming to these games and then additionally, how does that create superfans that come to more games,” Goyette said. 

David Maher, a senior film, television and media arts major, has racked up over 1000 points on the app so far this semester. 

“It’s a good way to get fans more involved at games through the app,” Maher said. “It gives people, including students, some competition to see who’s the biggest fan.” 

In addition to sports games, the app has been used for other on-campus events, such as the Quad lighting on Nov. 29. Students received 10 points for checking in on the app at the gathering. It was one of the first non-athletics events redeemable for points on the app and the first since its official rollout in August, Goyette said. 

“The first one was actually orientation, but we hadn’t publicly announced the app at that point in time,” Goyette said. “This is the first one since we’ve launched that we’ve really had as a university event and we’re trying to work to incorporate more of those as we go forward.” 

Rachel Aaron, a fan engagement and game presentation intern at M&T Bank Arena and a graduate student in the 4+1 public relations program, helped organize the launch of the app as a beta tester and currently uses it on a daily basis. 

“I think it’s a great way to increase engagement and encourage students to come to games,” Aaron said. “(I) was able to help figure out what worked, what didn’t, if the layout worked.” 

A fan loyalty system was previously implemented on the now-defunct Quinnipiac Bobcats Mobile App in 2017 according to Quinnipiac Athletics’ website, but the new app puts rewarding users at the forefront. 

 Along with checking into events, the app allows users to become “fans” of one another, participate in polls for in-game entertainment and view the leaderboard of the users with the most redeemed points. 

Sam Gerossie, a first-year medical microbiology and immunology double major, is currently ranked twenty-first on the leaderboards as of publication. She is also a fan of all the added bonuses within the app. 

“It’s nice because you can check rosters and see upcoming games in one place,” Gerossie said. “You (also) get the Yale tickets if you reach 3000 points.” 

In addition, the app announced a partnership with Jersey Mike’s, on Nov. 30, offering a coupon for Bobcat Rewards users who participate in polls. 

“We have been talking with our partners over at Jersey Mike’s in Cheshire for a little bit,” Goyette said. “It’s been a nice time … there’s a coupon there to get half-off subs. It’s a nice little brand partnership for us.” 

The app is referenced throughout the gameday atmosphere, including announcements over the public address system and advertisements on the hockey arena’s boards. However, Goyette’s goal is to have the app become something that all fans will get used to and participate in regularly. 

“I see us really progressing as far as adoption,” Goyette said. “… it’s just an instinctive thing to go on the app.” 

The app is still new, so it has a way to go before it’s fully ingrained in the culture of Quinnipiac athletics. But in its short existence, both athletics’ officials and students have deemed Bobcat Rewards to be a success.