North Dakota Center for Tobacco Prevention and Control Policy Seeks Marketing Firm

North Dakota Center for Tobacco Prevention and Control Policy Seeks Marketing Firm

The North Dakota Center for Tobacco Prevention and Control Policy is soliciting proposals for a health communications marketing firm which includes developing marketing and advertising strategies, media placement, formative research and public relations.

Background Information

The North Dakota Center for Tobacco Prevention and Control Policy is a division of the Tobacco Prevention and Control Executive Committee. The Executive Committee administers the funding provided by Statewide Initiated Measure 3 that voters passed in 2008. Measure 3 established a comprehensive tobacco use prevention and control program using Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) Best Practices. CDC methods are based upon best practices determined by evidence-based analysis of scientific literature and outcomes of comprehensive state tobacco control programs and interventions.

The Center’s website,, offers the latest news on issues related to tobacco use and secondhand smoke, its health consequences, and what can be done to protect all North Dakotans from secondhand smoke.

The Tobacco Prevention and Control Advisory Committee, appointed by the governor of North Dakota, is charged with developing and evaluating Saving Lives — Saving Money, North Dakota’s Comprehensive State Plan to Prevent and Reduce Tobacco Use 2016 – 2018. The plan’s goals are to significantly reduce tobacco use and its health and economic consequences by using policies and programs proven to keep kids from starting to use tobacco, help tobacco users quit, and protect everyone from secondhand smoke.

This RFP will identify a qualified firm to provide services for the North Dakota Center for Tobacco Prevention and Control Policy and its partners. To meet the Center’s needs, this RFP may also address any of the following: countering pro-tobacco influences, media advocacy, earned media, social media, grassroots marketing strategies, public relations, counter-marketing strategies and exposing tobacco industry tactics.

In an effort to facilitate complete proposals, it is important that the Contractors know the overall goals of the Center and the need to maintain a comprehensive statewide tobacco control program. A comprehensive statewide tobacco control program is a coordinated effort to establish policies that promote tobacco free social norm change. These policies promote and assist tobacco users to quit, and prevent initiation of tobacco use, and protect everyone from secondhand smoke.

The Center’s Health Communication Plan goals include:

  1. De-normalize tobacco use to prevent youth from using tobacco products and to encourage tobacco users to quit.
  2. Eliminate exposure to secondhand smoke.
  3. Educate the public, policymakers and media about how the negative impact of tobacco in North Dakota and how the tobacco industry perpetuates the epidemic by causing death and disease in North Dakota.
  4. Communicate to the public, policymakers and media changes in public beliefs, behaviors, accomplishments and the health and economic benefits of fully sustaining North Dakota’s comprehensive program.

By implementing the state plan: Saving Lives, Saving Money, North Dakota’s comprehensive tobacco prevention and control program, we can expect to see a sharp reduction in smoking and other tobacco use in the state. The number of people in the state who suffer and die prematurely because of smoking and other tobacco use will decrease; a healthier and more productive workforce will bolster our economy; and public and private dollars will be saved by cutting government, business, health care and household expenditures caused by smoking and other tobacco use. Saving Lives – Saving Money is the Center’s pledge to the people of North Dakota.

Tobacco use is the leading cause of preventable death in North Dakota:

Tobacco’s Toll in North Dakota

  • Adults who die each year due to their own smoking: 1000
  • Kids under 18 who become new daily smokers each year: 300
  • Annual healthcare costs caused by smoking: $326 million
  • Yearly tax burden from smoking-caused government expenditures: $823 per household
  • Smoking-caused productivity losses: $232.6 million each year
  • Annual tobacco industry marketing expenditures in North Dakota: $34.1 million


The Contractor will work with the Center to develop creative, innovative and balanced campaigns to meet the Center’s goals. The Contractor shall manage the selection of creative materials, recommend and manage the purchase of paid media, develop earned media, social media and public relations opportunities, subject to the Center’s approval.

Campaigns of longer duration and higher reach and frequency are associated with greater declines in smoking rates.

The three major content areas of these messages include:

  • Motivating tobacco users to quit
  • Protecting people from the harms of secondhand smoke
  • Transforming social norms to prevent tobacco use initiation

Description of Specific, Results-Oriented Tasks

The successful Contractor will be expected to:

  • Prepare a detailed annual comprehensive health communications plan and budget to target the Center’s goals and reach the target audiences. The plan will integrate the requirements of CDC’s Best Practices for Comprehensive Tobacco Control Programs.
  • Develop targeted counter-tobacco influence messages.
  • Coordinate all aspects of the comprehensive health communications plan, including mass media, public relations and social media. The plan will include building grassroots efforts and increasing the reach and depth of the Centers website:,, and social media channels.
  • Conduct media research, evaluation, purchase and placement services.
  • Work with the Center and CDC in choosing ads relating to the campaign and related tasks such as dubbing, tagging, and actor fees.
  • Demonstrate capacity to handle all aspects of a comprehensive health communications campaign.

Health Communications Marketing, Advertising and Media Placement Section:

  1. Health Communications Marketing & Advertising
  • Develop a comprehensive, strategic and creative health communications marketing plan to further enhance the BreatheND brand and build upon the Center’s goals. The plan will integrate the requirements to meet CDC’s Best Practices for Comprehensive Tobacco Control Programs. The plan will maximize awareness of de-normalizing tobacco use; maximize awareness about the harms of secondhand smoke; educate the public, policymakers and media on the impact of tobacco use in North Dakota and changes in public beliefs as it relates to tobacco; raise awareness among audiences about the role of the tobacco industry causing death and disease in North Dakota.
  • Develop a budget for the comprehensive health communications plan. Use research to develop strategic campaigns, as well as research to improve on campaign delivery.
  • Provide creative services for a comprehensive advertising campaign, including production and concept development, which may include multiple traditional and non-traditional media including the following, but not limited to television, print, radio, digital, direct and electronic marketing materials.
  1. Media Research, Evaluation, Purchase and Placement Services
  • Analyze, research, evaluate and recommend specific marketing mediums placed (both paid and unpaid).
  • Monitor placement to insure accuracy and completion of all paid and unpaid media schedules.
  • Pursue value-added opportunities, partnerships, earned media and media advocacy opportunities to extend budget reach.
  • Produce and/or assist the Center in digital and interactive mediums including research, strategic planning, management, direction and implementation to ensure electronic marketing efforts align with traditional methods.
  1. Public Relations, Social and Digital Media Section
  • Ability to develop and provide insight on successful media relations campaigns with measurable objectives, which includes media release strategies, public relations strategies, social and digital media strategies and grassroots efforts.
  • Maintain a strong sense of how to position stories, identifying the correct media and securing positive coverage for the Center.
  • Provide activity reports with progress toward measurable objectives.
  • Establish and maintain cooperative working relationships with media entities, journalists and the Center’s Communications Manager.
  • Evaluate and expand existing social and digital media strategies, including the website and, to engage and educate the target market. This plan should provide measurable components.
  1. Research, Surveillance and Evaluation
  • Conduct formative research for the purpose of benchmarking, message testing and measuring campaign effectiveness.
  • Identify and strategically develop key messages and delivery approaches.
  • Conduct research to develop strategic campaigns, as well as research to improve on campaign delivery.
  • Conduct on-going surveillance of the tobacco industry to stay current on issues impacting counter marketing activities.
  • Provide market analysis, pre-test advertising concepts and understand target markets.
  • Measure and evaluate media relations campaigns, which include media release strategies, public relations strategies and social and digital strategies.

Proposal due by November 21st at 5PM

Center for Tobacco Prevention and Control Policy

1680 East Capitol Avenue, Suite A

Bismarck, ND 58501-5603

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