The Maryland State Lottery and Gaming Control Agency (MLGCA) is issuing this Request for Proposals (RFP) to invite qualified Offerors to submit proposals to provide advertising, marketing, media and related services, including creative development and production, and media planning, negotiating and buying. The MLGCA’s mission is to provide revenue for Maryland’s General Fund through the sale of entertaining Lottery products that support State programs and services benefiting the citizens of Maryland.
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The MLGCA, an independent agency of the State of Maryland, began operations in January, 1973. Over the last forty-five years it has grown tremendously, while also frequently evolving to adapt to the challenging retail environment. The mission of the MLGCA is to raise revenue for the State’s good causes and MLGCA is now the fourth largest contributor to the State’s General Fund behind individual, corporate, and sales and use taxes. While raising revenue is its top priority, the MLGCA recognizes the importance of satisfying the public’s appetite for fun and entertaining games of chance which has led to the popularity and stability of the brand for more than four decades. The brand enjoys broad appeal, as approximately 73% of adult Marylanders have played the Lottery within the past 12 months. Even those who don’t play regularly view the MLGCA positively. The MLGCA has a continuously active, labor intensive advertising account with multiple marketing, creative, media, digital and research projects requiring attention and service simultaneously.
Scope of Work:
- The Contractor shall become a partner with MLGCA in the development and evolution of its business, brand and product portfolio in order to further the MLGCA’s mission of providing funds to the State’s General Fund. All Contractor personnel assigned to the Contract shall be committed to the same goals as the MLGCA and shall create and execute programs that will deliver on those objectives.
- Meetings at the MLGCA’s headquarters (1800 Washington Boulevard, Suite 330, Baltimore, MD 21230) with Contractor personnel shall be held a minimum of weekly, although at times could be more frequently as dictated by the project workload and as directed by the MLGCA.
Staffing Levels and Changes
- The Contractor shall provide the level of service (number and experience of employees and corresponding number of full-time equivalents) as specified in its proposal and approved by the MLGCA (see Section 188.8.131.52 – Staffing Structure and Plan/Experience and Qualifications of Proposed Staff), and shall maintain at least that level of service throughout the term of the Contract. All management representatives assigned to the MLGCA account team shall be approved by the MLGCA. The Contractor shall provide notice to the MLGCA of any proposed changes to be made in the account management team and the MLGCA shall have the right to approve or reject proposed personnel changes.
Development of Creative Concepts and Production
- The Contractor shall develop effective, breakthrough creative concepts and produce campaigns with high quality production standards in the most cost effective manner. Creative work includes, but is not limited to, television, radio, print, out of home and digital advertising, plus an array of merchandising items and point of sale materials for a network of approximately 4,500 Retailers. The Contractor may also be required to assist the MLGCA in developing game names, product logos or artwork for other uses.
- Creative Brief – The MLGCA will provide the Contractor with a briefing document for each advertising initiative that includes a product overview, general strategies, budget, etc. The Contractor’s team shall then develop a creative brief which will provide strategy recommendations, messaging priorities and other details. Once approved by the MLGCA, this creative brief will be used by the Contractor to guide creative development. Creative work presented by the Contractor will be evaluated, in part, based on its delivery against this creative brief.
- Creative Concepts – The Contractor shall develop advertising and marketing creative concept recommendations that represent the MLGCA in a positive light and in a manner consistent with the brand identity. The Contractor shall offer alternative campaigns, rather than only one creative solution to a particular game or promotion. At least three versions of television commercials, radio scripts, newspaper ads, and all other creative products shall be offered when the Contractor makes a creative presentation to the MLGCA.
- Other Creative Deliverables – The Contractor shall provide various copywriting, graphic design and studio services as directed by the MLGCA including, but not limited to, creation and maintenance of Brand Style Guide and related materials, logo development, publication and newsletter design, meeting/conference or special presentation materials, display materials, annual reports, specialty items, etc. Contractor shall also provide various copywriting and proofing support services that may not be related to specific advertising initiatives, as requested by MLGCA.
- Contractor shall have the ability to email files in a variety of formats, including but not limited to gif, jpeg, pdf or psd. Files may also be posted on secure web/ftp site. Contractor shall be capable of delivering art electronically or as otherwise requested, within 48 hours of final approval by the MLGCA, to selected media or the MLGCA as required.
- Creative Timelines – The Contractor shall plan and follow creative development schedules that allow sufficient time for developing and presenting integrated creative solutions, editing and/or revising selected options, obtaining final approvals from the MLGCA and/or MLGCA licensing partners, producing the final product(s) and delivering the finished product(s) according the MLGCA specifications. The Contractor shall provide detailed production schedules with task milestones for each project or job.
- Casting and Talent Payments – The Contractor shall make all talent recommendation to the MLGCA for any and all marketing and advertising materials. Casting auditions shall be provided for all on-camera or voice talent and shall be presented with alternatives. The MLGCA shall be allowed a reasonable time for review and approval. Once approved by the MLGCA, the Contractor shall manage talent use agreements and coordinate talent payments.
Graphic Design Services
- The Contractor shall provide graphic design concepts and final artwork for numerous MLGCA controlled assets. These include, but are not limited to, Lottery In Motion (LIMS) monitors (installed by the MLGCA’s Central Monitoring and Control System Contractor at Retailer locations), Keno and Racetrax screens, various areas on MLGCA websites and mobile properties, and inserts for daily Drawings shows. Graphics for these assets are usually changed or updated on a weekly basis, although more frequent updating is often required. Designs generally support new product launches, promotions, winners or other MLGCA news and are either part of a larger advertising campaign (if available) or of a standalone nature.
- The Contractor shall also provide digital production services including, but not limited to, digital proofs, PDF proofs or comparable files, scans, mechanical assembly, die line creation, typesetting or type formatting, digital imaging or file prep, file conversion, proofreading, or creation and/or duplication of CDs, DVDs, thumb drives, or any current method of storing and transferring advertising and graphic files.
Digital Marketing and Advertising
- The Contractor shall create innovative digital marketing campaigns to effectively communicate with target audiences through all digital consumer touch points, with an emphasis placed on creativity and effectiveness of digital initiatives, with Key Performance Indicators (KPI) and measurement tools established with the MLGCA and the MLGCA’s Media Planning and Buying Services Contractor prior to the development of key campaigns. Digital programs shall work synergistically with other advertising communications to achieve stated goals. The Contractor shall remain current on all emerging technologies and provide the MLGCA with recommendations for digital marketing opportunities. The Contractor‘s responsibilities include but are not limited to, digital strategy development, content and creative development and production, optimization recommendations, and performance analysis.
Social Media Management
- The Contractor shall work with the MLGCA’s Digital Manager and other members of the MLGCA’s Marketing Department, as well as the MLGCA’s Media Planning and Buying Services Contractor, to enhance and manage the MLGCA’s comprehensive social media communications platforms (including but not limited to Facebook, Instagram, YouTube, and Twitter.).
- The goals of the social media program are to increase engagement with the Lottery brand among existing and future players, to communicate brand and product news and to reinforce the MLGCA’s advertising and marketing initiatives in the social space. The Contractor’s responsibilities include but are not limited to, strategy development, content and creative development and production, community management, optimization, and performance analysis and reporting.
Direct Marketing, Database Management and Customer Relationship Marketing
- The Contractor shall work with the MLGCA and other MLGCA contractors to develop and implement a comprehensive strategy for building and maintaining a solid customer base that is loyal to the MLGCA brand. This shall be achieved by establishing an email marketing program, as well as providing assistance with the MLGCA’s customer loyalty program, developing couponing and other incentive programs, providing database management, comprehensive reporting and other tactics as deemed appropriate by the MLGCA to achieve the MLGCA’s business goals through all current and future channels.
- The Contractor shall provide strategic direction on the development, implementation and expansion of My Lottery Rewards players’ club, related loyalty programs, and on-line second chance Drawing platforms. Upon request, the Contractor shall provide materials to the Player’s Club Contractor for promotion campaign and/or brand integration.
- The Contractor shall provide other direct mail services, including but not limited to, list management, program creation, development and production, and other mail-related fulfillment services as requested by the MLGCA.
October 10th, 2018.
Maryland State Lottery and Gaming Control Agency
Montgomery Park Business Center
1800 Washington Boulevard, Suite 330
Baltimore, MD 21230
Attention: Robert W. Howells