By Juliette Fairley | Main Street
NEW YORK (MainStreet) — When Chris Kokinda watched sports games on television last year while being signed into Viggle, he didn’t know time was adding up so quickly. “I watch pro football 9 to 12 hours a week depending on whether I stay up to watch Monday night football,” Kokinda told MainStreet. That turned out to be more lucrative than he anticipated.
Viggle is an entertainment marketing and rewards platform founded by Robert Sillmerman, who started CKX, which owns the firm that launched the television show "American Idol." It was Kokinda's participation in Viggle's fantasy football playoff challenge that caused him to rack up so many points.
“I play for fun," said Kokinda. "If one of your seven players scores a touchdown, you get a point.” Watching a football game and playing Viggle Football fantasy game can earn him up to 11,000 points per game. Because of his dedication to the game and football, the Gainesville, Fla. resident earned so many reward points that he won a trip to New York City paid for by Viggle to watch the Super Bowl playoffs between the Seattle Seahawks and the Denver Broncos.
“I was quite shocked, because I had never won anything big like that before and I wasn’t trying to win,” said Kokinda, who estimates that the weekend trip for two cost $10,000. “It’s amazing that I beat out more than 100,000 other people who were also playing along.”
Kokinda is one of 8 million Viggle users who are taking advantage of the firm’s rewards program.
“I have earned $250 worth of gift cards in the past year that I’ve been viggling,” said the delivery truck driver.
Viggle revenue growth for first quarter 2015 is projected at 49%.
“From registration data the user provides, Viggle knows your age, gender and where you live,” said Greg Consiglio, Viggle's president. “We use Viggle points as an incentive to get people to watch certain TV shows that we are paid to promote by advertisers.”
Rewards available for points include films, television shows, music, gift cards and merchandise such as Bose headphones and a popcorn maker.
“Once a reward is earned, it’s either shipped directly to your home or downloaded instantly if it’s a movie, television show, music or gift card,” Consiglio told MainStreet.
Points earned in a day are capped at 13,000, which is why some users enlist the help of every member in their household, including teens.
“Our demographic is 18 to 34 years old, which is a bit broader than Millennials, and we skew slightly more heavily female than male,” said Consiglio. A movie can be redeemed for as little as 5,500 points a $10 to $25 gift card requires some 30,000 to 35,000 points unless it’s for a sweepstakes, which offers $100 gift cards.
“This year we will be adding Viggle points to websites so that people can earn rewards while surfing the internet,” Consiglio said.
Let the games begin!