The Comet – Central Midlands Transit Issues Marketing RFP
The COMET is a new transit system with new energy and new leadership. And from mechanics to drivers and from planners to board members, we don’t believe in running a public transit system that’s boring and stale.
In fact, we think The COMET should be the ride of choice. It doesn’t matter if it’s the daily commute, socializing with friends while traveling from destination to destination, or visiting the area’s many attractions. For less than two bucks, The COMET can take you pretty much anywhere you want to go in the Midlands. And, we’re working hard to increase the number of routes and vehicles that take you there. Here’s just some of what’s in store for the near future:
- Real-time bus locators, free WiFi and apps
- As many as 30 more routes people want to ride
- New park-and-ride and limited-stop express services
- A new downtown circulation system
- New rural transit systems
- Creating a 100% alternative fuel fleet
Scope of Work:
The COMET is soliciting proposals from qualified firms for a three (3) year, with two (2), one year extensions, to provide marketing services (graphic design, internet presence, community events and advertising) for transit system.
- Marketing Plan
- Develop a marketing plan to include The COMET’s online presence, printed materials, community events/shows and advertising.
- The marketing plan must show how to effectively reach new riders.
III. The plan must include key performance indicator measurements and goals and must be completed within 30 days of the start of the contract.
- Graphic Design
- Design bus schedules, rider’s guides, system maps, rack cards and business cards
- Design other informational brochures, including the DART, Half Fare, Travel Training and other specialized brochures
III. Design system maps to be used in buses, bus stops, bus shelters and various public events
- Design bus stop schedule displays for bus stops, which will be unique to each bus stop
- Other minor graphic design needs, including passes, promotional brochures, posters and informational flyers.
- Each graphic design item will be required within five business days of the request. The ride guide, transit schedules and system maps will be required within a month of the request. As items require updates or changes, the same time period will apply.
VII. The COMET will direct graphic design requests.
VIII. All printing will be coordinated by The COMET. The COMET may request assistance from the Contractor with identifying appropriate vendors for printing.
- All graphic design items may be required to be translated into Spanish as directed by The COMET.
- Internet Presence
- Design a new The COMET website
- Track The COMET on the internet and take action to portray a positive impression.
III. Ensure The COMET is properly displayed in search engines and social media sites.
- Contractor must ensure Search Engine Optimization is used as the marketing discipline for the internet presence, including social media in item 4.
- Contractor will work with The COMET to add elements to the website to portray a positive image.
- Social Media
- Re-Develop social media pages for The COMET in Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, YouTube, Vine, Snapchat, Google + and other sites as recommended.
- Manage content in all social media sites. It is expected that The COMET will provide content at least once per week, though the number of postings may increase as The COMET needs to communicate service changes or public meetings. YouTube content may be added as videos are produced.
- Identify and attend community events and shows to promote The COMET, provide a positive impression and distribute information on how to use The COMET.
- This task will include identification of event materials and promotional items to distribute subject to available funding.
- Media Planning and Buying Services (Advertising)
- The Contractor will plan and purchase advertising in print, digital, radio and television media types as funding allows and as directed by The COMET Community Outreach Specialist and Executive Director/CEO.
- The Contractor will advise on content and design of material, prepare/produce the advertising, assist in selecting appropriate media types for advertising, place the buy and handle the billing.
The COMET Administrative Offices
ATTN: Virginia Goodson
3613 Lucius Rd. Columbia, SC 29201
Agencies to consider include Ruder Finn and Finn Partners.