“The power of HappyOrNot is in the large number of responses you capture and can address in real-time. It’s a fundamental shift in how we operate.”

Moon Javaid, Vice President of Strategy & Analytics, San Francisco 49ers

Volume of Real-Time Feedback Enables Urgent Corrections, Long-Term Improvements at San Francisco 49ers

The San Francisco 49ers football team collects data to ensure 68,500 fans have a memorable experience at each and every game, and that they keep coming back year after year.

Moon Javaid, VP of Strategy & Analytics for the San Francisco 49ers, saw his first Smiley Terminal in an airport in 2017. He immediately contacted HappyOrNot, and by the following week the Smiley Terminals were delivered and activated.

There are only 10 to 12 NFL games at the stadium per season, so if something goes wrong for a fan at just one game it’s a big deal. “The beauty of HappyOrNot is its simplicity,” says Javaid. “It allows us to ask simple questions.”  How was your concession experience? Were you satisfied with the cleanliness of this restroom? How was your parking experience? Were you satisfied with the screening process at the entrance? And, with the four-button terminals, fans can provide a volume of answers that are actionable.

HappyOrNot-Consistently Improving the Fan Experience

Consistently Improving the Fan Experience

After the first deployment of the Smiley Terminals in 2017, Javaid and the 49ers back office quickly saw the value of the real-time data, and the creativity and flexibility of the HappyOrNot team.

“We value the fact that we can capture fan sentiment in real-time. Plus it’s easy to use,” says Javaid.

The 49ers broke the record for the number of responses in a single day, with fans tapping those shining smileys 18,000 times.  By the end of that season they logged 221,566 responses, a whopping seven-fold increase over 2014 feedback levels.

The HappyOrNot system is an important component to achieving the 49ers’ customer experience goals:

Make urgent corrections and adjustments in less than five minutes
Maintain an impressive 99.8% season ticket-holder retention rate
Achieve an 80% index score with improvements that raise the bar on CX
Increase competitiveness with other stadiums and new sports-and-entertainment web-streaming alternatives

“Fans are happier and understand we’re listening to them.”

“Our overall experience satisfaction biometrics have improved by double digits over the last three years,” tells Javaid.

The 49ers customer analytics team is fueled by feedback and, in addition to real-time opinions, they collect as many as 2,000 survey responses per game. Stakeholders gather after every event to evaluate a report which Javaid says is effectively a compilation of data that is “synthesized into a story” about customer activity and fan experience.

HappyOrNot Effectively Managing an Army of First-Time Employees

Effectively Managing an Army of First-Time Employees

It takes between 3,000 and 4,000 employees to staff a professional football game. Where do you find them? How do you manage them all?

The 49ers’ success comes from an onsite management structure made up of stakeholders for key functions – parking management, concessions, retail, technology, stadium operations, entertainment, restroom maintenance, gates, guest services, suites, and clubs. Learning about a hot dog shortage, a restroom that’s out of commission, or long lines at the entrance days after a game does little if anything to promote a positive experience.

Season ticket holders fill more than 97% of the seats, so retaining those fans means the stadium can settle for nothing less than a superb fan experience. The real-time reports and alerts to the right stakeholders means the staff – whether it’s their first game or their tenth game – will make sure fans get a hotdog now, not just an apology later.

Achieving Customer Experience, and Business, Goals

Javaid says that the HappyOrNot system, integrated with other reporting systems, is important to maintaining the 49ers impressive customer retention rate: 98.99% of season ticket holders come back each year – a rate most businesses can only dream about.

About San Francisco 49ers

The San Francisco 49ers football team’s home is Levi’s® Stadium in Santa Clara, California, located in the center of the Silicon Valley, northwest of San Jose and 50 minutes southeast of San Francisco. It seats more than 68,500 fans, and can expand to 75,000 for special events. The facility has also been home to major soccer championships, like the Copa America Centenario and the International Champions Cup. It has hosted the championship game of college football and a Super Bowl. It is a frequent stop for leading music acts like Taylor Swift, Kenny Chesney, U2, the Grateful Dead, Coldplay and Beyoncé, and exhibitions like the Monster (Truck) Jam® and WrestleMania®.  It has 50 restrooms that must be stocked, fresh and functioning. Fans can buy everything from French fries to a branded wardrobe at 600 points-of-sale. Each fan has to be able to hear what’s coming over the loudspeakers, and each demands a good Wi-Fi connection, whether it’s for posting selfies or checking their favorite mobile game app. The management team has ambitious customer experience goals, and has demonstrated a dedication to achieving them game after game. Visit www.49ers.com to learn more, or read coverage on the relationship at Forbes.com