Mississippi State University Issues Marketing RFP

 The MSU Riley Center is requesting a vendor to provide services for the purpose of marketing, advertising and promoting its events, facilities and services. The Riley Center offers a wide variety of performing arts events through ticket sales, conference, meeting space and services and educational experiences and services for local and regional schools. Last year, the MSU Riley Center brought in 63,510 visitors to our building, attending 624 meeting, conferences and social events. Over 24,322 people attended performing arts events, including almost 7,000 children, teachers and parents. The number of people attending events in downtown Meridian totaled almost 87,800 through the business activity of the MSU Riley Center.

Background:

Mississippi State University (MSU) is a comprehensive land grant university of 21,500+ students and approximately 5,000 faculty and staff. The main campus is located adjacent to the community of Starkville in northeast Mississippi, with a remote campus located in Meridian with an enrollment of around 700 students.

Scope of Work:

A creative services provider submitting a proposal must be prepared to function as an extension of the staff of the MSU Riley Center.  A prospective creative services provider must be able to demonstrate and document expertise and experience in the following areas:

1)            High-level, broad-based public relations and marketing skills.

2)            Current knowledge of classical and popular music (including country, soul/R & B, rock and jazz), dance, and theater, including children’s theater. The MSU Riley Center staff takes the lead in booking performances, but it relies on the creative services provider to knowledgeably contribute to staff discussions concerning potential artists for upcoming seasons.

3)            Familiarity with the live entertainment preferences and attendance habits of the East Mississippi region.

4)            Familiarity with local and regional media – broadcast, print and online.

ACCOUNT SERVICE

Account executives, designers and other personnel would need to visit the MSU Riley Center several times a week to attend regularly scheduled meetings as well as to present artwork, deliver materials to and from vendors and clients, and otherwise facilitate the operations of the center. Because of the center’s lean staffing, the creative services provider staff must be flexible, going beyond rigid job descriptions to pitch in whenever and wherever needed in order to accomplish the center’s mission.

Required services would include:

  1. Exist as an extension of the Riley Center staff being reachable and accessible in a short time frame and accessible in a short time frame that is within 30 minutes to an hour on any given business day and should at a minimum attend performances and events at the MSU Riley Center in order to understand the services and products the Center offers.
  2. Attend weekly staff meetings at the MSU Riley Center to discuss marketing ideas, artist selections, review comps, review Daktronics boards, T.V. monitors as well be involved on any other related topics.
  3. Coordinate and carry out all media buys related to both performing arts, conferences/meetings and education.
  4. Write and distribute press releases for each show.
  5. Coordinate with artist agents for artist interviews.
  6. Coordinate with artist agents to secure photography and approval of collateral materials.
  7. Provide photography for events, press conferences, personal appearances by artists, meetings/conferences brochures and other promotional and marketing purposes.
  8. Assist Riley Center Staff, when needed, to coordinate all printing services.

PRINT SERVICES

The MSU Riley Center presents two main performing arts series each year, plus educational programs. It also hosts meetings and conferences for up to 1,000 attendees.

Print-related services related to those events would include the following:

1) Research, write, design, proofread and coordinate printing of season brochures, two seasons per year.

2) Research, write, design, and proofread press releases announcing each performing arts season and announcing/promoting each individual show, two seasons per year. Specifications: nine-13 artists per season

3) Design and proofread performing arts season rack cards, two seasons per year. Specifications: 4″ x 9″, 4/4 with bleed

4) Design and proofread social events postcard, one per year. Specifications: 9″ x 6″, 4/4 with bleed

5) Design and proofread performing arts season magnets, two seasons per year. Specifications: 4″ x 9″, 4 color process/one sided with bleed

6) Write, design and proofread 10 four-color magazine ads per season for the performing arts seasons, two seasons per year.

7) Design and proofread other collateral, such as seating charts, maps and signage for the Friends of the Lady donor support program, for each performing arts season, two seasons per year.

8) Write, design, and proofread a conference sales brochure, one per year.

Specifications: folds down to 6″ x 10″; unfolds to 12″ x 10″ (includes 0.25″ bleed); eight pages plus cover; total of three spreads.

9) Write, design, proofread and coordinate printing a yearly education program brochure, one per year.

10) Write, design, proofread and coordinate printing a yearly Family Series program brochure, two seasons per year.

VIDEO/AUDIO/DIGITAL SERVICES

Required video, audio and digital services would include but not be limited to the following:

1)            Provide video production for the season announcement video for each performing arts series, two seasons per year.

2)            Produce a live event featuring the video announcement of each performing arts series, two seasons per year.

3)            Provide artwork for a Daktronics video board that promotes upcoming events, two seasons per year.

4)            Provide graphics for BullyBoard, MSU Riley Center TV monitors, MS State campus T.V. monitors, two seasons per year.

5)            Provide graphics for MSU Riley Center TV monitors, MS State campus T.V. monitors, two seasons per year. 1366 X 768 pixels

6)            Produce an electronic version of each season brochure for online browsing, two seasons per year. The e-publication must be in a responsive layout for desktop, tablet and mobile users.

7)            Create email marketing campaigns using Constant Contact that include season announcements, spotlights on individual artists, announcements of sold-out shows and other messages for season subscribers and other friends of the MSU Riley Center, two seasons per year. Each email is custom-built using HTML/CSS coding, two seasons per year.

8)            Create email survey(s) for the conference facility using Constant Contact. Survey(s) will ask up to five questions and will be sent to conference participants, one per season.

9)            Provide TV production for all performing arts events, two seasons per year. Specifications: :30 second high-definition produced spots with approved artist images; upload to TV stations, coordinate media buy; nine-13 artists per season

10)          Provide radio production for all performing arts events, two seasons per year. Specifications:30 second MP3 produced spots; send to radio stations, coordinate media buy; nine-13 artists per season.

11)          Provide two annual updates for the MSU Riley Center website for nine-13 artists per season, using the Mura CMS content management system. The artist details include information from the season brochures along with ticket links, videos, resources and website links, two seasons per year.

12)          Provide regular updates for the MSU Riley Center website and upload each press release for nine-13 artists per season, using the Mura CMS content management system, two seasons per year.

SOCIAL MEDIA SERVICES

The MSU Riley Center maintains an active social media presence, focusing primarily on its performing arts offerings but also encompassing meetings/conferences and private events.

Current services include the following:

1)            Posts during live events.

2)            Copywriting, proofreading and scheduling of promotional posts on Facebook, Twitter and Instagram, 20-30 posts per month.

3)            Monthly ticket giveaways.

4)            Social media ad campaigns.

5)            Design of new timeline images that correspond with the upcoming performances.

6)            Monitoring.

7)            Maintaining of the Events section on Facebook.

8)            Creation of reports regarding the reach of social media posts.

Due Date:

September 28, 2017

Address:

Office of Procurement and Contracts
Mississippi State University
610 McArthur Hall
245 Barr Avenue
Mississippi State, MS 39762

Strong education PR firms include Burson-Marsteller and Ketchum PR.

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