The purpose of this Request for Proposals (RFP) is to provide interested Offerors/experienced marketing/branding firms with proven national higher-education experience with sufficient information to prepare and submit proposals for Market Research and Brand Development for consideration by Bloomsburg University of Pennsylvania (“BU” “Bloomsburg” “University”). Through this new branding and integrated marketing program, Bloomsburg University is seeking to develop a memorable brand, better define and establish its distinctive attributes, and determine the best ways to tell the stories of our students and alumni. The University needs to communicate its advantages succinctly and in a way that makes it easily understood for both internal and external audiences. A distinctive, coherent message, centered around the University’s identified brand attributes, needs to be threaded throughout existing programs and should also guide the development of new programs in all areas (from academics to athletics/student life to the next advancement campaign, and in other outreach beyond campus).
While prospective students and their families rank first among target audiences, the Bloomsburg University message also must be clearly articulated for and adopted by the campus community, alumni, donors, parents of current students, community members and friends of the university. Further, to aid student recruitment, BU needs to increase its visibility as a public institution of choice and differentiate itself among the competitive set in the minds of prospective students and their families, as well as the general public. Increased visibility will also build campus and alumni and donor pride and encourage further engagement with the University.
- Market Research – Clearly articulate our competitive set, and identify the key attributes that sets BU apart from its competition locally and regionally.
- Brand Awareness – Ensure that our target markets know Bloomsburg University, and have top of mind awareness of our key attributes.
- Enrollment – Achieve a consistent number of first year, transfer and graduate students annually, thereby ensuring stable and sustainable enrollment. The BU Strategic Enrollment Management plan (2017-2022) has a targeted enrollment for fall of 2021 of 10,864, with 1,000 of those being graduate students. These numbers will be adjusted based on 2017 actual enrollment numbers. Presently enrollment stands at about 9,215 full and part-time undergraduate and graduate students.
- Internal Messaging – Create a set of key messages and brand attributes that can easily be shared with current students, faculty, and staff. The goal is to equip each member of our campus constituents with talking points and positive Bloomsburg University stories to attract and engage others in what are memorable experiences in and around our campus community.
Founded in 1839, Bloomsburg University, is the largest comprehensive University in Northeastern and Northcentral Pennsylvania, offering 56 undergraduate majors, 58 undergraduate minors and 20 graduate programs. BU is one of fourteen member universities of the Pennsylvania State System of Higher Education and has an enrollment of approximately 9,215 full and part-time undergraduate and graduate students comprising its student body. Its commitment to academic excellence in teaching and scholarship, career preparation and proactive community service has contributed to its growth and success.
Further information about Bloomsburg University can be found at: www.bloomu.edu.
Further information about the University’s Office of Marketing and Communications can be found at: https://intranet.bloomu.edu/marcomm.
Scope of Work:
The specific objectives that the University hopes to achieve from any contract resulting from this RFP include:
- Make clear the University’s value proposition and differentiating position.
- Position BU for measurable gains in awareness, favorability, market position, consideration, and interaction with:
o prospective students
o key influencers and leaders
- Drive new undergraduate and graduate student enrollment gains, beginning with materials and activities in fall 2019 and beyond, which include:
o Increasing prospective student inquiries, open house visits, contacts for more information and campus visits
o Increasing open house attendance
o Improving BU’s positioning as a college of first choice
o Increasing freshmen applications
- Increase positive image perceptions among key stakeholders as measured in future awareness surveys.
- Provide a foundation for future fundraising and capital campaign communications.
March 15th, 2018
Bloomsburg University of Pennsylvania
400 E. Second Street
Bloomsburg, PA 17815