Enrollment Markarch and Advertising Services for Enrollment Growth and Fiscal Stability


Bismarck State College is soliciting proposals from higher education consulting firms that specialize in enrollment marketing, research and advertising services for enrollment growth and financial stability. The 14-month contract will run from May 1, 2021-June 30, 2022 with an annual renewal option of up to two years. The proposal has four components:

1. Research and Analysis:

a. BSC seeks a firm to conduct a comprehensive analyses of BSC’s performance – analyzing the market, collecting current and prospective student insights as well as analyzing the marketing and enrollment pipeline from first touch to census date and on through key student retention and completion milestones.

b. The firm will identify key performance indicators as benchmarks which will allow the College to track progress and measure performance throughout the pipeline.

2. Enrollment Marketing:

a. BSC seeks a firm to develop specific enrollment marketing strategies, establish quantifiable enrollment goals, implement the enrollment marketing plan, establish analytics for campaigns and monitor, evaluate, conduct situational analyses refreshes, and modify the enrollment marketing plan as necessary for the remainder of the contract period.

3. Brand Campaign:

a. BSC seeks a firm to develop a unique branding campaign and assets tied to growing enrollment for BSC.

4. Media Planning and Buying:

a. BSC seeks a firm to build a strategic media plan to include digital marketing as well as traditional marketing


BSC is seeking to make significant measurable progress towards establishing a strategic enrollment marketing plan along with a long-term implementation plan. The outcome of the work must be a significant contribution to fiscal stability and enrollment growth at BSC. Bismarck State College is North Dakota’s only polytechnic institution. BSC offers more than 100 technical and transfer programs and degrees including two and four-year degrees, as well as a growing number of stackable, industry-approved certificates. Established more than 80 years ago, BSC has served as the community’s college in central North Dakota establishing strong local, regional and national partnerships that benefit students and community alike. Bismarck State College is the third largest institution in the North Dakota University System which includes 11 research, four-year and two year institutions. BSC serves approximately 4,000 traditional college students, and 22,000 community members through continuing education and training. BSC has long been a leader in energy education, training generations of technicians, managers, frontline and back end specialists in coal, renewables, oil and natural gas plants and facilities. The college also has a focus on healthcare, cybersecurity, manufacturing/automation, agriculture and liberal arts transfer. In 2018, BSC Board of Higher Education directed BSC to expand its mission to become a polytechnic insititution, and BSC officially began functioning as North Dakota’s only polytechnic institution on Oct. 1, 2021. In addition to the traditional general ed transfer programs, BSC offers high demand technical degrees including four year Bachelor of Applied Science degrees and degrees from our peer institutions that can be achieved on our campus. BSC serves students locally, regionally and globally

The BSC Community Report provides additional insight into our financial, service and demographic breakdown. Additional student insights can be found in our student profiles.

Scope of Work:

The scope of work encompasses four projects.

A. Research and Analysis: Use primary and secondary data to conduct a comprehensive analysis of BSC’s enrollment and retention pipeline. Bidders must provide a bid price for each task identified below:

a. Analyze total enrollment data including but not limited to: number of inquiries, applicants, and admits; prospect communication streams, student demographics and etc.

b. Assemble and analyze the various data for enrollment trends, including past, current, and future mission and goals and objectives.

c. Identify barriers to enrollment and retention along with strategies to grow enrollment, increase retention and improve financial stability.

B. Enrollment Marketing:

a. Establish quantifiable enrollment marketing goals and identify key performance indicators (KPI) as benchmarks which will allow the College to track progress and measure performance.

b. Develop and support a strategic enrollment marketing plan that will increase enrollment and contribute to fiscal stability.

c. Monitor, evaluate, conduct situational analyses refreshes, and modify the strategic enrollment marketing plan as necessary for the remainder of the contract period.

d. Generate monthly and/or weekly progress reports providing KPI information and ROI.

C. Brand Campaign:

a. In support of the strategic enrollment marketing plan, the successful bidder will develop creative assets to support the plan and achieve the goals set forth. Including:

i. Concept, planning, design, development, production, and evaluation of paid and unpaid advertising; and

ii. Content creation for various platforms including graphic design, photo and video production, messaging and writing.

b. The campaign package will include creative messaging and presentation that reaches BSC’s key audiences and drives enrollment growth and fiscal stability.

c. Agency campaign creative elements (look, feel and creative elements including photos, video, copy, etc.) must be translatable to recruitment print and digital materials produced in-house.

D. Media Planning and Buying:

a. Provide media plans for the College based on marketing goals and objectives including all applicable research and analysis.

b. Negotiate and execute media buys on behalf of the College that may include but are not limited to digital, traditional (print, radio, TV), Search Engine Marketing (SEM).

c. Monitor media placements, ensuring that they run smoothly; negotiate make goods for any missed spots/placements and document value-add media placement.

d. Provide post-buy analysis for media buys as well as digital campaign performance reports on a regular basis.

e. Produce expenditure reports as requested

Due Date:

March 8, 2021


North Dakota’s Polytechnic Institution 1500 Edwards Avenue Bismarck, ND 58501

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