Lee County Visitor & Convention Bureau Issues Marketing RFP

2020-05-02 by Jim Crickell
Lee County Visitor & Convention Bureau Issues Marketing RFP
Lee County Visitor & Convention Bureau Issues Marketing RFP

In undertaking this project, we spoke to stakeholders throughout the community. While we sought and heard differing points of view, I can say with sincerity that passion for our destination was shared in equal measure. We collaborated closely with the county’s travel and tourism industry, along with business and civic leaders. We looked inward at the strategies and tactics we have applied to date and outward at the successes of other Destination Marketing Organizations (DMOs) to identify the short- and long-term trends shaping tourism locally, nationally, and internationally. We are ever mindful that the economic growth harnessed through tourism benefits not only the tourism industry, but our community at large. We are committed to this responsibility every day. Our strategy is based on what we collectively believe is best for our community and that means asking hard questions about the future. Our plan reflects a path to growth that capitalizes on our strengths as a means of seizing opportunities that lay ahead. We are proud of our community and of the fact that it draws millions of visitors year after year. Lee County is a unique, beautiful place to visit, and we are honored by the opportunity to showcase it every day. Thank you for sharing our commitment to the continued growth, prosperity, and natural beauty of this world-renowned destination.

Background:

2.1.The Lee County Visitor & Convention Bureau (VCB) is the official marketing and promotional agency for visitation to Lee County and its 11 geographic regions. The organization brands and markets Lee County, Florida as The Beaches of Fort Myers & Sanibel and is funded by the 5 percent tourist tax on short term accommodations commonly known as the bed tax.

2.2.In Lee County, tourism employs 1 out of every 5 people. We receive approximately 5 million visitors annually that spend $3 billion while in our area. In 2018, international markets delivered 524,000 visitors to Lee County’s lodging establishments – with Canada, Germany and the United Kingdom contributing the largest shares.

Scope of Work:

3.1.The Lee County VCB is seeking a qualified Vendor to provide expertise in assisting with the development and implementation of a Strategic Sales and Marketing Plan that integrates the marketing disciplines of sales, marketing, and public relations to create brand awareness for Lee County / The Beaches of Fort Myers & Sanibel to consumers and the travel trade in United Kingdom, Ireland, and Scandivavia.

3.2.The Vendor shall develop and maintain strong trade relationships with top wholesalers, retail travel agencies, airlines, and the meetings and incentive market, and/or develop tactical campaigns to promote Lee County, Florida and increase destination visibility through press articles, news, trade shows, feature stories, etc. The Vendor shall solicit and secure interested partners to provide Lee County brand exposure to their staff and clients. The Vendor shall develop, as part of the Strategic Sales and Marketing Plan, a Fully Integrated Concept directed toward the travel trade with all details provided in a written brief that shall meet the VCB’s established criteria for acceptance. This would include coordination, whenever possible, with the VCB’s public relations, marketing, and promotions principals.

3.3.Annually, the VCB develops and executes marketing campaigns. The Vendor shall be the resource to evaluate, develop, and execute the Fully Integrated Concept, thus providing insight and recommendations on how to include United Kingdom, Ireland, and Scandivavia travel trade into the proposed Strategic Sales and Marketing Plan.

3.4.Although it is highly preferred, the Vendor does not need to be located within the Target Area, however they must have an exceptional ability to support and implement the requests and requirements of this Agreement throughout the Target Area.

3.5.The sales, marketing and public relations services provided under this contract by the Vendor shall successfully carry out the VCB’s current Strategic Marketing Plan, attached herein for review purposes, and achieve the following goals:

a. Build brand awareness of Lee County’s vast Tourism Product;

b. Facilitate and increase the number of leisure travelers to Lee County from United Kingdom, Ireland, and Scandivavia

c. Increase the average length of stay of visitors to Lee County from United Kingdom, Ireland, and Scandivavia visitors.

3.6.The Vendor shall develop a Strategic Sales and Marketing Plan that enhances the position of Lee County tourism to key travel trade and media outlets in United Kingdom, Ireland, and Scandivavia. The Vendor shall create a plan that accomplishes the following:

a. Improved and expanded knowledge of Lee County’s Tourism Product by key travel trade to increase share of featured product and sales accomplished through marketing initiatives including, but not limited to sales missions, road shows, sales calls, trainings, trade shows, and familiarization (fam) tours.

b. A public relations strategy that facilitates media relations with key journalists and media that ultimately secures placement across broadcast, digital and print media as well as social media channels to reinforce Lee County’s position as a desirable destination to visit.

c. The Strategic Sales and Marketing Plan shall be fully developed with final plan provided to the Lee County VCB within 60 days of the contract commencement date. Final Strategic Sales and Marketing Plan must include the Fully Integrated Concept details.

Due Date:

2:30 PM Monday, June 29, 2020

Address:

Procurement Management Director, 2115 Second Street, 1st Floor, Fort Myers, Florida 33901.

Hunter PR and Alison Brod PR are strong agencies worth considering for this assignment.