The Office of Early Childhood (OEC) strives to improve the quality of early care and learning programs, and ensure equitable access to these programs, to make sure Colorado’s children are ready for school when entering kindergarten. Guaranteeing Colorado parents and caregivers have access to high quality and affordable early learning programs for their children is a critical part of improving our public schools, increasing economic opportunity, and reducing burdens on our public safety and criminal justice systems.
In November 2014, the Office of Early Childhood launched the Colorado Shines Quality Rating Improvement System (QRIS) under the Race to the Top Early Learning Challenge Grant. Colorado Shines is the state’s quality rating and improvement system. Colorado Shines rates Colorado’s early learning programs, connects families with quality programs, and helps programs improve their quality level. It’s free for programs, professionals and families to use. The Colorado Shines QRIS is a market-driven system, requiring parents and caregivers to seek out and demand high quality early care and learning programs in their community.
In 2015, the OEC secured a vendor to develop a communications strategy through December 2016, with the goals of developing brand awareness of Colorado Shines among early care providers, professionals and parents; educating the public on the importance of high quality early care and learning programs; and driving families to not only search for high quality programs, but to demand their current provider improve their quality level.
The paid media part of that campaign reached parents and caregivers statewide, in both English and Spanish, with over 12 million impressions in the first three month segment (January 2016-March 2016).1 Paid media efforts increased awareness among families about the Colorado Shines quality child care search tool. Web traffic to coloradoshines.com increased from 475 users in December 2015 to 12,132 in the month of March.2
The Office of Early Childhood is looking to continue and expand paid media efforts in 2018 to increase brand awareness and demand to support the goal of creating a market-drive system. Additionally, paid media will support the OEC’s goal of increasing the quality of, and access to high quality early care and learning programs statewide. It is vital that parents and caregivers seeking care look for the Colorado Shines brand, recognize it, associate is with quality and then demand that level of quality from their providers. To make that happen, the OEC must continue reach parents and early childhood stakeholders through highly visible paid media channels.
Scope of Work:
Paid Media Strategy:
- Review paid media plans and reports for 2015, 2016, 2017, as well as propose strategy for 2018
- Provide recommendations for a paid media strategy that may include digital advertising, social media placement, Google AdWords and radio
- Ensure the strategy aligns with early care and learning program schedules (i.e. peak enrollment periods)
Update Owned Media Assets (as needed):
- Review inventory of owned media assets, and update as necessary to fit paid media strategy
- Allow for up to two rounds of revisions
Facilitate Paid Media Buy:
Purchase and manage paid media on behalf of the OEC and Provide Tracking and Analytics for Analysis
- Provide the OEC with regular updates and tracking reports for paid media, including analytics (i.e. impressions)
- Copyright of work to be assigned to the OEC upon completion of each
Department of Human Services
North Central Procurement
1575 Sherman Street, Denver, CO 80203
Department of Human Services
Southern District Procurement
1600 West 24th Street, Pueblo, Colorado 81003
Strong digital PR agencies include Finn Partners.