Lady Antebellum, Quicken Loans to Pay Seven Fans' Mortgages During 'Wheels Up' Tour

Joseph Llanes
Lady Antebellum

Lady Antebellum’s fans are paying upward of $40 a pop to catch the country trio on its Wheels Up Tour this summer, in support of current album 747. To return the favor, Lady A will pay for seven lucky fans’ home mortgages for the next year as part of a new sweepstakes and collaboration with Quicken Loans, the presenting sponsor of the tour.

Titled 7for7 as an extension of a similar charity-themed initiative for the 747 album release last fall, the sweepstakes will ask fans to share their most creative, thoughtful stories about what it would mean to meet Lady A and have a reprieve from 12 months of mortgage payments. In addition to seven grand-prize winners, two runner-up first-prize winners will win a VIP meet and greet. An additional 20 second-prize winners will receive autographed copies of 747. The sweepstakes runs through Aug. 20 at LadyAntebellum.com/7for7, and entrants must be 18 years of age and legal U.S. citizens.

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The Lady A deal is Quicken’s latest foray into music sponsorships, having supported George Strait’s farewell Cowboy Rides Away tour in 2013 and 2014. But the 7for7 sweepstakes is also a new twist on previous partnerships with executives like Warren Buffett, who in 2014 offered $1 billion to an NCAA fan with the perfect bracket (the prize went unfulfilled after zero entrants made it past the first round with an unscathed bracket.)

“We’re always looking for things we can do differently,” says Jay Farner, president-chief marketing officer, Quicken. “We could just sponsor the Lady Antebellum tour, and we talked about that, but we felt it was important to also do the 7for7 sweeps so we could bring more than our name to the ticket. We can actually create special experiences at a concert, and free mortgage payments that fans will remember for a lifetime.”

Matt Ringel, exec VP of Lady A’s management company Red Light, says the band will be actively involved with selections for the sweepstakes, and notes that the trio has already performed at an internal Quicken event for 5,000 employees. “[Singer] Hillary [Scott] expressed to the president of the company that this makes her so happy that they’re able to do this for their fans. Giving back to the community and fan connectivity are so important to Lady A, and Quicken is all about being relevant in local communities -- particularly to young families -- so this all made a lot of sense.”

Financial service companies have come to dominate the touring circuit, led by Citi, American Express and MasterCard. In 2015 alone, Taylor Swift is teaming with American Express for her 1989 Tour, Lady Gaga and Tony Bennett have expanded their summer tour with the help of Citi, and MasterCard hosted 2015 spokesperson Gwen Stefani at an exclusive concert at Los Angeles’ Orpheum Theatre during Grammy Week.

Lady A will be supported by Sam Hunt and Hunter Hayes throughout Wheels Up. The tour kicks off May 1 at United Supermarkets Arena in Lubbock, Texas, with more than 50 stops through its Sept. 19 conclusion at Camden, New Jersey’s Susquehanna Bank Center.