Zap2It is rewarding its most avid TV-watching users with badges, bragging rights, and actual real-world prizes, in an initiative powered by social engagement company Gigya.

Not all of the Zap2It Rewards Challenges activities are new to Zap2It, but they’re now brought together into a unified gamification offering. Fans are being officially introduced to it with a sweepstakes in which the first users to earn 2,500 points and unlock the “Head Writer” badge are eligible to win an Apple iPad.

Besides the contests, all Rewards Challenges actions sync with Facebook, Twitter and other major social media sites, and each person’s various linking, liking and other interactions get totaled up on a leaderboard to ramp up the gamified competition.

Zap2it is a Tribune Media Services TV news and information property.

“Launching the Zap2it Rewards Challenge is a big step in enhancing our social TV presence,” said Rebecca Baldwin, vice president and general manager of Zap2it. “It gives our users a home for their TV-focused communities and our advertisers a new way to reach truly engaged TV watchers.”

Related links:

Zap2It – official site

Zap2It blog – ‘Head Writer’ giveaway: Rack up 2,500 Rewards Challenge points to win an iPad

Zap2It – press release

Gigya – official site