Visit California sticks with DCI for domestic PR account

The contract is worth as much as $300,000 through June 2016, with three annual renewal options.

Point Lobos in California (Photo by David Gilliland, via Visit California's Facebook page).
Point Lobos in California (Photo by David Gilliland, via Visit California's Facebook page).

SACRAMENTO, CA: Visit California has retained Development Counsellors International for its domestic PR account, a representative of the organization confirmed on Tuesday.

Visit California released an RFP in February seeking a firm to promote tourism to the state from within the US. The contract is expected to run through the end of June 2016, according to account documents. The budget is listed as up to $300,000 for the initial contract year, with as many as three renewal options available.

Twenty-four agencies sent intent-to-bid notices for the account, and 15 submitted questions, according to a Q&A document posted online by Visit California. The document also listed DCI as the incumbent on the account, and noted that the organization has worked with the firm for about six years.

DCI has been "creating innovative marketing communication campaigns that break through the marketplace clutter and influence consumer purchasing decisions," according to its website. A representative from DCI was not immediately available for comment.

Account documents also listed MeringCarson as the group’s advertising AOR and its content-development partner as Time California.

In terms of account work, Visit California described an earned media program that would boost domestic travel to the state. It also wanted a firm that could serve as a US market media expert and resource, carry out PR programs and media events, and foster national media relationships and outreach to influencers, according to the RFP.

Firms applying for the contract were required to have at least three years of experience in tourism PR, with their roots in New York but also a California office, according to the documents. Visit California preferred that agencies pitching for the account had the bulk of their teams based in New York, according to the Q&A document.

Late last month, Visit California also released an RFP for a global social media agency. That contract is also worth $300,000 annually.   

A Visit California representative was not immediately available for comment.

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