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Chicago Cubs Baseball Recap Wake Up Calls

Engagement: Chicago Cubs Baseball Recap Wake Up Calls Campaign
Organization: The Chicago Sun-Times
Industry: Media
Service: Customer Connect


The city of Chicago faced a crisis – their beloved baseball team, the Chicago Cubs, were set to face-off against the Arizona Diamondbacks in the National League Division Series, but the first two games of the series were to be played on weekday evenings in Arizona, and the games would not be over until after midnight. For many fans, this meant that they would not be able to stay up late enough to catch the final score.

Willie Wilkov, Director of Promotions & Branding for the Chicago Sun-Times newspaper came up with a solution – offer baseball fans free wake up calls with a recap of the previous night’s game. To further sweeten the deal, the wake up calls would be voiced by the Sun-Times’ controversial sports columnist, Jay Mariotti. The wake up calls would be promoted on the front page of the newspaper and the website on the day of each game. There was only one caveat – Wilkov came up with the idea and received approval for the program only one day before the first game.

After receiving proposals from other organizations, VerveLife contacted Snoozester just one day before they had scheduled to make a decision on which company to work with. Snoozester provided VerveLife with a proposal and a demo of Snoozester’s Customer Connect technology.


Snoozester to the rescue…

In another brilliant move, Wilkov decided to contact the business solutions group of leading web-based wake up calls and notifications service, Snoozester. The Snoozester team loved the idea and agreed to implement a solution overnight, so that the service could be promoted on the front page of the following day’s paper, which would hit newsstands in just twelve hours. Snoozester was confident that they would be able to turn around a system so quickly due to their robust call scheduling and delivery infrastructure, the Snoozester Engine and the associated Snoozester API. Snoozester’s solution for the Sun-Times included:

A web-based call scheduling interface that:
  • Enabled Sun-Times readers to schedule wake up calls to their landline or mobile phone numbers at the time of their choosing on the mornings following each of the late-night games
  • Included measures to curb misuse (such as scheduling repeated calls to a single number)
  • Mirrored the look and feel of the website, even though the call scheduling website was hosted by Snoozester
  • Did not require the Chicago Sun-Times to purchase any hardware or software
  • Included an automated telephone-based recording system that allowed Jay Mariotti to record the baseball recap messages after each game
  • Included a reporting system that permitted Snoozester to provide the Sun-Times with regular updates on program participation / response rate


Unfortunately, the Cubs lost the series, but the Sun-Times still scored a big hit – readers took advantage of the program to schedule nearly 4,000 wake up calls for the mornings following the first two games.

Willie Wilkov had the following to say about his experience with Snoozester, “Snoozester expertly handled all aspects of this promotion. In only seven hours, they built a custom program for us from scratch. They listened, they committed to the project, and they over-delivered. I can’t say enough about their high level of customer service. I would use Snoozester again in a heartbeat.”

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