Client Spotlight: How Maryland used M Rewards to add Weight & Value to Attendance Loyalty

Marty Summa Jr. is the Assistant Director in Social & Digital Media for the University of Maryland’s athletic department. He oversees all of the social media accounts associated with Maryland athletics as well as producing specialized day-to-day content for the Maryland faithful. Summa understands that being active and engaged on social media is the most convenient way to build trust with the Terrapins fan base.

“We wanted to show appreciation to our long-time season ticket holders and dedicated students that attend a majority of our events,” Summa said. “With FanMaker there is now weight to fans [attending the games].”

“With FanMaker there is now weight to fans [attending the games]”


FanMaker partnered with Summa and the University of Maryland nearly two years ago. Summa was looking for new ways to engage Maryland’s athletics fans on social media and reward them for things like season and single game ticket purchases and much more.

Maryland was stuck in the traditional marketing ways just like many athletic departments and even professional sports organizations still are today. The same old promotions just weren’t cutting it anymore and the attendance at events outside the “Big Three” sports weren’t up to snuff. By capitalizing on the masses of students who utilize social media and attend athletic events often, Maryland has been able to generously reward their fanbase using FanMaker’s unique and fully customizable platform, granting points for their various deeds.

“[With FanMaker] we are looking to incentivize students to not only attend high profile matchups in the ‘Big Three’ sports [Football, basketball, baseball], but spread the love and support to all sports and student-athletes that we have at Maryland,” Summa said.

Maryland’s rewards page is chock full of goodies. From exclusive t-shirts to replica football jerseys, Maryland’s goal is to reward the righteous, whose main goal is to share their Terrapin loyalty. Summa’s objective of linking the rewards page with their social media content is to get people talking about the gifts from the rewards page and spark the interest of more fans to create a buzz.


“The prizes have surprisingly been a big draw for both students and general fans,” Summa said. “We tend to place our creative giveaway shirts on the M Rewards Store. These shirts are exclusive to students that attend select football and basketball games. This way our general fans and students that don’t get in the game have a way to get their hands on shirts that are seen on television and talked about on social media.”

Up until this point, Maryland and their rewards program has been doing very well. Their M Rewards Store is currently sitting at over 45,000 members. And their top three verified hashtags that fans can use to accumulate points towards their rewards store have been tweeted nearly 12,000 times in the last four weeks. The direct feedback they’re receiving should say it all.

“We have received some strong positive feedback from season ticket holders that we ‘back-granted’ points for their longevity as a season ticket holder].”

“We have received some strong positive feedback from season ticket holders that we ‘back-granted’ points for their longevity as a season ticket holder,” Summa said. “So the folks that have had tickets for 30 years started with an account filled with M rewards points, which showed our appreciation and loyalty to them.”

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