As the Arizona Diamondbacks began their 2006 season, they introduced a new fan loyalty program called MVP Rewards. I’ve talked about this program several times over the course of the season. The basic premise was that each game you attended you were awarded points. Each dollar you spent at the team shop or at selected concession stands you were awarded points. Finally, when you purchased from preferred vendors both around town and online you were awarded points. You could continue to accumulate points and redeem them for prizes from their online prize center. The prizes consisted of Diamondbacks merchandise, autographed memorabilia, or Diamondbacks experiences. The points never expire and you can continue to collect points until you had enough to get the prize you were most interested in. Over the course of the season and through this off-season I had accumulated nearly 9,000 points. I had my eye on the Steal a Base experience where you could go out between innings during a game and take second base. I thought it would be cool to have a game used base hanging on my wall next to my other Diamondbacks memorabilia. The program was not without its problems, I have had to contact the MVP Rewards program office several times to have points added to my account that had not shown up. I still am not sure that all the points from all the games are properly accounted for on my statement. But overall, it has been fun seeing my point total moving forward towards my goal. That all changed today though.

I received an email from the Arizona Diamondbacks. This is usually a sign that I am going to have a really good day. This time though that wasn’t the case. They wrote to notify me that the company that the Diamondbacks had hired to run their rewards program had gone out of business and therefore I would not be able to accumulate any more points towards my account. The email assured me that my points were not lost and that the Diamondbacks were working on a new and improved program that would meet my needs. While I appreciate that there will be a new program, I wonder whether the purchase of the two jerseys I made earlier this week along with the new Sedona Red Diamondbacks hats and merchandise would ever find its way to my account. From my calculations, I have purchased almost 1,000 points worth of merchandise just in the past two weeks that my never be recovered. This is depressing and frustrating as I feel like I’ve been let down and wonder whether this truly is a reward. It is hard to blame the Diamondbacks as they are probably more frustrated than I am since I’m just a single fan while they have to deal with the frustration of literally thousands just like me. The email concluded with the email address of the person within the Diamondbacks organization who is responsible for fan loyalty. I thought that was a nice touch by the team and I added the email address to my address book. You can never have too many contacts with the Diamondbacks and since Trina tells me I am the “idea guy”, maybe I can pass a few suggestions on for the team to use. Until then, I am going to keep track of my Diamondbacks purchases to see if there is any way these will be included within the new program. I’m still hoping for that Steal a Base Diamondbacks Experience.

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