Marketing and Communications Firm Sought By Santa Clara, California

Marketing and Communications Firm Sought By Santa Clara, California


The County of Santa Clara is requesting proposals from qualified vendors that offer creative strategies and innovative approaches to provide overall communications consulting and marketing services for Valley Health Plan (VHP), the County of Santa Clara’s Health Maintenance Organization (HMO). The County will give greater preference to vendors with proven marketing experience/expertise in the health care industry.


Valley Health Plan (VHP) is a Knox-Keene licensed health maintenance organization (HMO) owned and operated by The County of Santa Clara. VHP is committed to improving the overall health and well-being of its members and the health of the residents of Santa Clara County. The health plan is committed to promoting managed care principals such as paneled physician practices, health education, disease management, preventative care, utilization management, and community outreach.

VHP was originally created to meet the needs of Santa Clara Valley Medical Center’s hospital staff for affordable, quality healthcare. Initially established in 1985, VHP’s Commercial membership has grown from 4,500 in 1995 to over 30,000 at present. VHP also acts as a Management Services Organization (MSO) for Santa Clara Valley Medical Center where current enrollment is approximately 131,000 members.
VHP is comprised of essential departments to ensure regulations required by the Department of Managed Health Care are upheld so the plan can maintain its Knox- Keene license. VHP has received Accreditation from the Accreditation Association for Ambulatory Health Care (AAAHC) and is a Qualified Health Plan (QHP) for the California Health Benefit Exchange. VHP has plans for continued expansion of membership bringing about a need for strategizing, planning, and implementing a new marketing and communication plan. The strategic plan will need to encompass both an increased focus on consumers and individuals, including VHP’s Individual & Family Plan and Medi-Cal, while also considering Medicare, small, and additional large group marketing in the future.

VHP Commercial HMO:

Commercial membership is comprised of employees of Santa Clara County – Active & Retiree, In-Home Supportive Services Workers, VMC Foundation, as well as Covered California and Individual & Family Plan members.
The VHP Commercial Provider Network includes local community clinics, independent practices, Northern Cal Advantage Medical Group (NCA), Palo Alto Medical Foundation (PAMF), Verity Medical Foundation, Cal IPA, Santa Clara County Individual Practice Association, and Santa Clara Valley Medical Center. Within the network, services include nationwide pharmacy locations as well as other health care providers for mental health, substance abuse, chiropractic, acupuncture, and related services.


In 1996, the County of Santa Clara created the Health Authority (Santa Clara Family Health Plan) to respond to the State’s Two-Plan Model legislation. In response, VHP was assigned to assist Santa Clara Valley Medical Center (SCVMC) with managing member delegation of Medi-Cal and Healthy Kids patients from Santa Clara Family Health Plan for SCVMC and the community partner clinics. Currently VHP is responsible for over 130,000 delegated members and has created an extensive provider network throughout Santa Clara County. VHP also provides management services for County Coverage Programs such as Valley Kids and Primary Care Access Program (PCAP).

Scope of Work:

This RFP is designed to provide interested bidders with sufficient basic information to submit proposals meeting minimum requirements, but is not intended to limit a proposal’s content or exclude any relevant or essential data. Bidders are at liberty and are encouraged to expand upon the specifications to evidence service capability under any agreement.

The vendor selected under this RFP must develop, coordinate, implement, and evaluate marketing and communications campaigns (annually or possibly multi- year). The goal of the campaigns are to retain current memberships and increase market share by broadening the reach of the Plan’s product messaging. In addition, vendor will create awareness campaigns for Plan Network and benefit information to targeted specific groups and populations. The scope of work to be considered for the RFP shall include but not be limited to the items listed below. If the organization believes additional tasks are warranted, those tasks must be clearly identified in the vendors proposal. Responses must include an implementation time line for areas listed in the Scope of Work.

Services to be provided by the Vendor on the behalf of VHP are outlined below and broadly include:

o Overall communication strategy
o Brand management and implementation
o Message development
o Collateral development
o Special projects

Overall Communication Strategy:

Services to be provided by the Contractor(s) broadly include the following activities:

• Proposed initial and ongoing communication strategy, including market segmentation and targeted marketing strategies, media strategy and package marketing VHP to each of the following: individuals, small employer groups, large employer groups, brokers, and acquiring new member populations/demographics other than currently existing.
• Evaluation strategy to assess effectiveness of campaigns and communications, including Return on Investment (ROI) reporting and marketing analytics performance reviews.

Brand Management and Implementation:

Services to be provided by the Contractor(s) broadly include the following activities:

• Oversee and assist in management and implementation of current and future VHP brand and graphic identities for multiple lines of business/products.
• Expand and update brand guidelines and policy, as warranted.
• Review and provide guidance/feedback in the development of various materials using brand guidelines and graphic identity.

Message Development:

Services to be provided by the Contractor(s) broadly include the following activities:

• Oversee and assist in creative development, management, and implementation of VHP key messaging.
• Development and implementation of new communication and media strategies to acquire new commercial employer groups, individual VHP members, retain current membership, and advertise focusing on acquiring and recruiting entirely new member populations.
• Develop additional key messages, tools, and strategies for VHP Open Enrollment themes, events, and activities; new group acquisition materials; and advertising opportunities.
• Review and provide guidance/feedback to incorporate tag line and/or key messages during the development of various materials and advertisements.
• Develop, implement, and enhance current/future social, digital, and out-of-home tactics via media messaging to potential, new, and existing membership populations.
• Propose use of any new technologies to enhance outreach and media campaigns.

Collateral Development:

Services to be provided by the Contractor(s) broadly include the following activities:

• Apply existing VHP Brand Guidelines to all newly developed projects and materials.
• Potentially conduct at least one (1) photo shoot with identified target group.
• Subcontract photographer and crew for directed photo and video shoots and acquire voice-over and model talent.

Special Projects:

Services may be provided by the Contractor(s) broadly include the following activities:

• Conduct all media negotiations and buys on behalf of VHP.
• Participate in overall communication planning meetings and other activities.
• Suggest enhancements and/or marketing and communication plan focusing on acquiring and recruiting new employer groups, individuals, and Health Benefit Exchange enrollees, and other VHP products and lines of business, including market segementation and targeted marketing strategies.
• Develop in-language marketing and communication plans for in-language media to include, but not limited to: Spanish, Vietnamese, Chinese, Asian Indian, and Korean communities in Santa Clara County.
• Strategize a marketing, media, and communication plan for potential new products, lines of business, and benefit plans.
• Regular presentations to VHP Marketing and Executive teams during plan development for buy-in and sign-off, including initial strategy discussion, marketing plan proposal, media planning, and collateral showcase.

Due Date:

March 29th


Stacy Burnell
2480 North First Street, Suite 160
San Jose, CA 95131-9932

California PR agencies include Zeno Group and Edelman PR.

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