Board of Trustees of Eastern Illinois University is seeking proposals from qualified vendor(s) to work closely with the University in developing and executing a comprehensive marketing/media plan. The University’s Digital Communications, Marketing and Brand Management team will be responsible for execution of all design work. Vendor must be willing to work collaboratively with our team. Information about the awarded vendor(s) will be shared university-wide as well as with relevant governing bodies on an as needed basis.
Eastern Illinois University is independently governed by its own Board of Trustees, which oversees all aspects of the institution. Although the Board of Trustees is the primary authority over the university’s operations, it embraces shared governance, with faculty, staff and students providing advisory participation.
The University is seeking a vendor who can identify emerging opportunities and develop creative and effective media plans to differentiate EIU from competitors, solidify brand identity, increase awareness and ultimately increase market share for the University. Markets and areas of focus will vary based on University priorities in response to environmental factors and strategic plans. Target audiences for advertising campaigns are anticipated to be teens and parents. The chosen vendor must demonstrate success in multiple media markets.
The vendor will provide detailed plans, tracking and reports on the budget throughout the year as media is placed. The vendor will provide concise monthly billing statements and help ensure the University stays within the specified budget.
The vendor will provide strategic counsel in media planning for various media and maximizing exposure for the University with desired audiences. The vendor must have a proven ability to negotiate competitive media rates and deliver value added opportunities.
Specific areas of focus for the media plan include increasing student enrollment, shaping perception of target audiences and increasing awareness of the University in Illinois and surrounding states.
The following information shall be addressed in the vendor’s RFP submission, explaining how the vendor meets and/or exceeds the RFP requirements and needs of the University, according to the section and numeric notations as listed in this RFP document. Vendors are to reference the specific section and numeric notations in their RFP response in the order given in the RFP document. Vendors, please do not deviate from the corresponding numeric notations, and make sure each of your responses references and corresponds to each numeric indicator under each section. Failure to provide written responses to all items under this section may result in rejection of a vendor’s proposal.
Media Plan Development and Execution
The vendor will provide strategic counsel in media planning by target audiences and demographic data for TV, radio, print, digital, social, outdoor and sponsorship opportunities. The vendor will plan annual media campaigns and execute the media buy. The vendor will continuously evaluate traditional advertising opportunities for EIU, and adjust media plans as needed to maximize exposure for the University with desired audiences.
· Develop a media/marketing plan and corresponding media schedule for all advertising to be developed in consultation with the University
· Assess University priorities for target demographics and geographic locations to determine proper media channels and mix.
· Negotiate cost and present a proposed media buying plan based on University identified target markets and audiences, utilizing multiple channels, to University.
Execute the media plan:
· Upon University approval of a proposed media buying plan, in consultation with the University, execute the purchasing plan.
· Vendor will contract with, and will be responsible for payment to, media subcontractors for all advertising buys. Payment for the advertising must be made promptly to all vendors and subcontractors.
· Vendor will provide ad creative specs to university for the university’s production of creative in a timely manner, so as to allow sufficient time for production.
· Vendor will provide any and all analytics provided to the vendor by the subcontractors relative to the university’s media placements. Analytic expectations will be agreed upon prior to the media placement.
· Any changes to the advertising plan initially approved by the university must be submitted to the primary University representative for approval.
Perform media buying services
The vendor will represent EIU and assess advertising opportunities from a variety of media including TV, radio, print, digital, social and outdoor as well as sponsorship and partnership opportunities. The vendor must have a proven ability to negotiate competitive media rates and value added opportunities.
· Pre-buy analysis
· Media buying – negotiating best rates and most advantageous placement
· Relaying creative to media outlets/channels
· Payment to media outlets
Digital and Social Media
The vendor will maintain clear schedules for media placements and creative deadlines. The vendor will work with EIU and media contacts to ensure ads are inserted on time. The vendor will help manage expectations for ad quality and clarify any issues regarding ad specifications with media.
· Implement digital and social media campaigns that complement and enhance efforts to reach specific demographic and student populations.
· Tracking and Reporting The vendor will provide detailed plans, tracking and reports on the budget throughout the year as media is placed. The vendor will provide concise monthly billing statements and help ensure the University stays within the specified traditional media budget.
· Vendor will monitor any ad placements made by the vendor, providing timely feedback to the university so as to optimize placements.
· Track all program elements per industry standards.
· Provide monthly reports to designated University staff.
· Make recommendations for change when digital or social media are not performing well.