Spokane International Airport Seeks Marketing And Advertising Firm


Spokane International Airport is soliciting Proposals from  qualified professional firms to provide Marketing and Advertising Services for the Airport for the next three (3) calendar years, commencing on or before January 1, 2018 ending December 31, 2020, with an option for two (2) additional one (1) year terms. The Airport has several platforms for marketing and advertising services and the expectation is for the successful proposer to utilize a mix of radio, print, billboards, digital, and printed materials to support and promote airline routes, sponsorships, parking products, and general airport services and nonstop destinations. Services relating to consultation in other areas of marketing, advertising, promotions, social media, web applications, and branding may be solicited from other Proposers at the Board’s discretion.


The Marketing and Advertising services contract supports the promotion of a variety of functions and activities at Spokane International Airport, Felts Field, and the Airport Business Park.  The Airport has several platforms for marketing and advertising services and the expectation is for the successful proposer to utilize a mix of radio, print, billboards, digital, and printed materials to support and promote new airline routes, community events, sponsorships, parking products and general airport services, and nonstop destinations. In addition to social and traditional media placement, the Airport has the ability through sponsorships, memberships, subscriptions, and relationships with business organizations, not for profit entities, attractions, resorts, and hotels to broadcast email their members and customers In 2016, the Marketing and Advertising budget was $575,000 and those funds were expended for the creative design and actual advertising costs. A majority of those funds were invested through commitments made to airlines for promotion of new nonstop routes as well as for awareness of all other nonstop service being offered by the airlines serving Spokane.  This work is done in cooperation with the individual airlines and campaigns are structured in a manner of their choosing. Each airline has a different process, approach, culture, and brand identity. 2016 was an unprecedented year for Spokane International Airport in terms of new air service and subsequent passenger growth. Within the last 8 months, airlines have announced new nonstop service to six new destinations, as well as, the announcement by Frontier Airlines of their planned return to the Spokane market with service to their Denver hub commencing in April 2018. Passenger growth is up 9% in comparison to 2016. In addition, 2014 versus 2017, departures are up 22.5% and Seats up 20%.  However, retaining the service requires constant attention and effort.

Spokane International Airport handled 3,234,095 total passengers and 67,375.5 U.S. air cargo tons in 2016.  It is the second largest airport in the State of Washington and categorized by the FAA as a small hub airport. Alaska, American, Delta, Southwest and United Airlines serve 17 destinations with nonstop service on 60 daily departures. The Airport complex is the work site for three thousand people serving a variety of aviation and non-aviation related businesses, providing the region with a $750 million annual economic impact. Airport Board and staff are in the process of commencing the single largest capital improvement project in the Airport’s 55 year history. A planned $130 million Terminal Renovation Project (TREX) will begin the design phase later this year and construction is anticipated to commence in late 2019 or early 2020 and should continue for at least five years. Communicating construction progress, changes in wayfinding, and milestones through graphical support and assisting with special events will be an important component of the Marketing and Advertising Service contract. In addition, initiatives such as REAL ID and the TSA Pre-Check enrollment center operated by the Airport are important passenger programs that require graphical support.Advertising and marketing campaigns, particularly those with an air service focus, are structured in a manner that communicates to the Airport’s regional customer base, which includes Eastern Washington, Northern Idaho, and Western Montana, as well as parts of southern British Columbia and Alberta, Canada.

Scope of Work:

The Airport has used several platforms for marketing and advertising services and the expectation is for the successful proposer to utilize a mix of radio, newsprint, billboards, digital, printed materials, etc., to maximize the individual budget allocation or needs of the project.

Services to be provided will include the following:

  1. The successful proposer will support the promotion of new nonstop routes as established by the Airport as part of incentive programs they have extended to the individual airlines. For instance, in 2018, the Airport has committed $100,000 each to United for service to San Francisco and Chicago O’Hare and American for service to Dallas Fort Worth. Both are a mix of digital, radio and outdoor billboards. Additional funds will likely be expended in support of Southwest’s new nonstop to San Jose, Sacramento, and additional effort if the summer seasonal flights to San Diego and/or Chicago Midway are converted to year round service. In addition, funds will also be invested in Frontier’s return to the Spokane market on April 30, 2018 for both a launch event and the actual service. We also have  an ongoing campaign to promote all of the Airport’s nonstop cities  and  the access to individual airline network of cities. There are always the unanticipated announcements as well.
  2. We anticipate significant graphical and communication support for the Terminal, Renovation, and Expansion Project (TREX), which should begin construction in late 2019. A campaign communicating the project’s purpose, need, and schedule will commence during the summer of 2019 to begin the process of creating awareness. In addition, to the project’s primary facts, and phases, emphasis should be placed on the Airport’s integral role as an economic catalyst, the existing five airlines, six by the time the project begins, the seventeen nonstop markets that are served, and the availability of concessions and other services. Also, customer service elements such as free luggage carts, complimentary Wi- Fi, availability of rocking chairs, water bottle filling stations, and the cell phone lot are all important components to incorporate into the messaging. As the project evolves, signage for wayfinding will also be an important part of the program. In all instances, the creative will be utilized in a variety of ways including but not limited to printed, email, social media, web application, etc. Special events such as ground breakings, periodic media tours, project milestones, and ribbon-cutting ceremonies will also be an important component of the support to be provided under the contract.
  3. The City, County, and Airport West Plains/Airport Area Public Development Authority has the potential of providing dedicated and programmed infrastructure development funds. In addition, during the 2017 session of the Washington Legislature the Airport received a $2 million grant to extend a mile of rail from the existing Geiger Spur east across Craig Road onto the Airport’s primary property. There is also initial discussion of the PDA funding a transload facility to encourage greater use of rail service. As such, there may be a need to develop brand awareness, marketing materials, and a campaign to support the Airport’s share of the marketing responsibilities of the PDA, the Airport’s substantial acreage, rail service, and immediate access to Interstate 90 with a specific focus on the aerospace industry, including but not limited to Original Equipment Manufacturers (OEMs); third-party maintenance firms such as Maintenance, Repair and Overhaul providers, as well as transportation logistics, and heavy industrial users of rail services. The audience for this initiative would be outside  of the Airport’s market area and is anticipated to involve materials  for  trade shows both in the United States and internationally, which may require foreign language translation capabilities.
  4. Marketing and advertising services are needed for special events, sponsorships activities, and trade show materials, including but not limited to retractable signs, fabric wraps, and trade booth design and printing. The Airport plays a leadership role in the Felts Field Neighbor Day Open House and promoting of Felts Field tenants and tenant activities such as the annual Veterans Day Recognition event. Other special events, beyond TREX, including ground breakings, topping off ceremonies, halfway or project milestone events, and ribbon-cuttings involving Airport improvements at both facilities and private developments at both Spokane International Airport and Felts Field occur multiple times per year. Typically,  these types of activities usually involve signage, programs, or other unique event commemoration materials and occasionally, staff support.
  5. Occasional specialty items will need to be developed of unique marketing items  to be presented to airlines and other tenants to achieve top-of-mind awareness and to demonstrate Spokane’s creativity on their behalf. In a similar manner use of the Spokane International Airport and the Felts Field logo on give-away items such as coffee cups, folios, apparel, hats, etc., will also come under the contract.
  6. Parking revenue is the Airport’s single most important revenue stream. Parking revenue is reinvested in Airport infrastructure and used as the local match to secure FAA grant dollars. As such, promoting on-Airport parking products and  the developed brand is critically important to the overall operation of the Airport. Under the contract, the successful proposer would design and bid shuttle advertising wraps and create signage and ground transportation-related maps in physical and electronic formats.
  7. The successful proposer would also provide media buys as appropriate for the various messaging outlets.

Due Date:

October 25


Spokane International Airport
ATTN: Todd S. Woodard
9000 W. Airport Drive, Room 204
Spokane, WA 99224

Strong candidates for this could include Ruder Finn or Finn Partners.

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