FAIRFAX CITY ISSUES MARKETING RFP

2019-11-01 by Jim Crickell

The objective of this solicitation is to obtain proposals from qualified professional marketing and/or special events firms to plan, organize, and administer Fairfax City’s Annual Capacity Building and Restaurant Week Program on behalf of the Fairfax City Economic Development Authority and Central Fairfax Chamber of Commerce. This collaboration is undertaken annually at the request of the Director of Economic Development as a program designed to highlight and grow the strength of Fairfax City’s restaurant community.

Background:

Fairfax City’s Annual Capacity Building and Restaurant Week Program is administered by a Restaurant Week committee composed of two (2) stakeholders of the city’s Economic Development Authority, the Central Fairfax Chamber of Commerce, and the city’s restaurant community for a total 6 members. The committee is overseen with the assistance from the city’s Economic Development office.

In 2018, Fairfax City’s Economic Development Office convened a “Restaurant Week Committee” which was responsible for launching the city’s inaugural Restaurant Week program. The event spanned seven (7) days (Sunday through Saturday) at the beginning of March. During Restaurant Week, participating restaurants offer prix fixe lunch and dinner menus at promotional prices to attract diners. The program purpose was to highlight and promote the expanding and diverse culinary scene in Fairfax City by introducing residents/visitors to Fairfax City’s restaurants and for those familiar with the city’s restaurant community to experiment with new cuisines.

Based on the success of the inaugural year and feedback from participants the program was repeated in 2019 and realized a 35% increase in participants. For 2019, the Restaurant Week program sought to increase dining in Fairfax City restaurants, solidify the City as a regional dining destination, and strengthen our restaurant community as an excellent alternative to neighboring jurisdictions.

The Economic Development Authority is composed of seven (7) commissioners appointed by the City Council to create a climate favorable to business investment and growth. In partnership with the City’s Economic Development Office, the Economic Development Authority seeks to help create jobs, develop strong and interesting businesses, and to thoughtfully grow the City’s economy within the region.

The Central Fairfax Chamber of Commerce mission is to empower their members with the vision, leadership, and resources to achieve success, while contributing to the economic growth and quality of life in their business community.

Scope of Work:

Proposals should be submitted in the areas of professional marketing and/or special event planning services to assist the City and its affiliated Restaurant Week Committee, as well as the City Economic Development Authority, together with their staff and other advisors.

The EDA is seeking a firm or firms that are knowledgeable, creative, and can provide direction, innovative ideas and leadership for growing the Restaurant Week program from a weeklong event to a year round program which includes a number of capacity building services. The reimagined program must include a traditional Restaurant Week element (7 days), at least one keystone event (1 day) leading up and/or following Restaurant Week, and capacity building services for participants. The program outline is not all inclusive but is provided to give an idea of the minimum level of performance required. Therefore, we are looking for submissions that go beyond the program outline below:

·         Develop Restaurant Week

·         Develop event plan and budget

·         Determine program dates in coordination with the Restaurant Week Committee

·         Determine menu structure/price points examples include:

·         Lunch/Dinner Option

·         Family of 4 Option

·         Personalized Drink Option

·         Determine participation fees

·         Conduct outreach to restaurants on logistics of program

·         Plan promotional activities to support Restaurant Week

·         Grow Restaurant Week participant base by 5 or more new restaurants

·         Identify Keystone Event Leading up to and/or following Restaurant Week (i.e. Dinner in Blanc, Taste of Fairfax City, etc.)

·         Develop event plan and budget

·         Determine program date

·         Plan promotional activities to support keystone event

·         Have 75% of Restaurant Week restaurants participate in keystone event

·         Identify Capacity Building Program/Opportunities for Participants

·         Develop tools/training programs for businesses to communicate with their customers and spread information about their restaurant

·         Create opportunities for restaurants to step out of their daily context and learn how to reach more people.

·         Have 50% of participating restaurants signup for capacity building programs/opportunities by the end of the program year.

·         Recruit Fairfax City Restaurants to Participate

·         Distribute enrollment forms

·         Collect enrollment forms and fees

·         Collect menus and publish on Fairfax City Restaurant Week website

·         Distribute promotional materials/advertising to participants

·         Develop a Marketing and Public Relations Plan

·         Determine types of media

·         Develop a plan and budget

·         Develop and execute marketing and public relations campaign that brands Fairfax City as a dining destination, increases sales, drives traffic to FairfaxCityRestaurantWeek.com and social handles, and increases sales revenues

·         Plan and produce collateral materials, displays, brochures, contests, posters, banners, etc. to create interest in the program

·         Plan and direct public relations print, online, broadcast, editorial coverage, and publicity to create interest in the program

·         Create and/or update campaign look

·         Implement Marketing Plan

·         Secure multiple media placements

·         Evaluate Annual Capacity Building and Restaurant Week Program and prepare a report for the Committee and Mayor/City Council (this may require at least one presentation to either the EDA or Mayor and City Council)

·         Summary report should discuss restaurant participation, program marketing, and the success of the program comparative to previous years and goals established for current year.

·         In all cases, coordinate with the Office of Economic Development and serve as the program manager for all elements of activities falling within this RFP and reporting ultimately to the Office of Economic Development.

Due Date:

November 8, 2019 3:00 PM

Address:

Economic Development Authority

c/o Fairfax City Economic Development Office

10455 Armstrong Street, Suite 316

Fairfax, Virginia 22030

W2O group and Hunter PR are strong firms to consider.