Lewis County Community Trails has issued a marketing RFP. Ride the Willapa (formerly Willapa Hills Trail Fat Tire Ride & Festival) is an annual overnight, family friendly bicycle ride. The second annual event is planned for June 24- 25, 2017 and takes place on the Willapa Hills Trail. Ride the Willapa includes a community festival in Pe Ell and is marketed in conjunction with the 2nd annual Tour de Farms, an agritourism venue showcasing Lewis County farm producers. Cyclists and visitors will start and end their ride at the Chehalis trail head, located at the Veterans Memorial Museum, and are encouraged to camp overnight at nearby Rainbow Falls Campground and/or stay at area lodging facilities to meet conditions of Lewis County and City of Chehalis lodging tax funding sources.
The 2017 Ride the Willapa event aims to partner with Chehalis-Centralia Railroad and Museum, the Veterans Memorial Museum, the Lewis County Historical Museum, and other local organizations to develop additional tourist attractions before, during, and/or immediately after the event to help increase tourism spending and overnight lodging in the area.
Ride the Willapa is intended to increase year around use of the Willapa Hills Trail in Lewis County. It is anticipated that the event will grow over time to include a unique 50-mile ride from Chehalis to the coast and attract regional tourism to the local area. All proceeds, after expenses, generated from Ride the Willapa go directly back into Willapa Hills Trail upgrades.
This project is supported by Lewis County and City of Chehalis through 2017 Lodging Tax funds.
Design Team Capabilities:
The firm / team selected will have:
- Demonstrated success in developing and implementing a digital and print marketing strategy to promote and expand paid participant registrations in an annual event.
- Experience developing community partnerships and generating corporate sponsorships in support of an annual event.
- Expertise with print, radio, and social media event marketing including brand consistency and content development.
- Demonstrated availability to complete deliverables successfully within the designated timeframe.
Scope of Services:
Task 1: 2017 Ride the Willapa Event Marketing
Consultant will become familiar with existing event marketing information, including attending Lewis County Community Trails (LCCT) planning meetings as necessary and reviewing the 2016 Willapa Hills Trail Fat Tire Ride & Festival Final Report and digital content posted on the Ride the Willapa and Discover Lewis County web and social media sites. Tasks in this RFP are front-loaded, increasing in the months, weeks, and days leading up to the June 24-25, 2017 event. Event final wrap-up tasks include preparation of a 2017 Ride the Willapa Final Marketing Report, and providing continued web and social media content as appropriate to continue momentum in anticipation of an expanded 2018 Ride the Willapa event.
Task 1.1: Develop and Implement a Strategic Marketing Plan
The objective of this task is to increase (double the 2016 Fat Tire Ride registered participants) to create a sustainable source of revenue to support the 2017 Ride the Willapa and appropriate strategy to successfully use the event to raise funds to provide needed upgrades to the Willapa Hills Trail.
Task 1.2: Pursue Corporate and Community Sponsorships
Ride the Willapa is primarily supported by County and City lodging tax funds. In order to ensure the viability of future funding from these sources, Lewis County Community Trails needs to show that it has a plan for long term funding of the annual event.
Task 1.3: Develop long term community partnerships
The objective of the long term community partnership task is to create new and support existing partnership efforts by encouraging partners to host compelling events that will enhance visitor experience for tourists within the project service area during the 2017 Ride the Willapa.
Task 1.4: Coordinate the branding, design and production of Ride the Willapa marketing materials including posters, registration fliers, and print, and social media advertising
Task 1.5: Manage 2017 Ride the Willapa web and social media content
This task involves strategic posting of digital marketing content on Lewis County Community Trails’ and Ride the Willapa’s web and social media sites.
Task 1 Deliverables:
- Prepare and implement a 2017 Ride the Willapa Marketing Strategy. Strategy shall include planning level cost estimates/resources itemized for the proposed activities, a corporate donor strategy, and a timeline for implementation of the 2017 event;
- Generate corporate and/or donor sponsorships to support the 2017 Ride the Willapa event;
- Provide branding consistency support and co-marketing of complementary visitor experiences during the 2017 Ride the Willapa event;
- Preparation and delivery of multimedia digital and print marketing. Event promotional content may include press releases and news media interviews.
Task 2: Ride the Willapa Final Marketing Report.
Consultant will prepare a detailed report of the 2017 event highlighting key accomplishments including strategic recommendations and visitor feed back to inform future Ride the Willapa events.
Task 2 Deliverables:
The consultant will provide LCCT with a complete 2017 Ride the Willapa Final Marketing Report in digital format and 2 (two) hard copies. This report should include at a minimum:
- Spreadsheet of 2017 event partners, donors, sponsors, and registered participants;
- Cash amount of ticket sales revenue generated and sponsor cash and in-kind services donor contributions by source;
- Estimated or Actual visitor overnight stays and location during the 2017 event;
- Market reach of registered event participants;
- Actual Costs for implementation of the 2017 event, itemized by activities;
- Digital copies of all marketing content and materials created from the project;
- Strategic recommendations for an expanded 2018 Ride the Willapa event;
Proposal due by January 25, 2017 to:
Lewis County Community Trails
91 SW Chehalis Ave
Chehalis, WA 98532
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