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Chamber Issues RFP: Seeks Proposals for Profile Book Publisher

PIKEVILLE, KY (Jan. 2, 2023)

The Southeast Kentucky Chamber of Commerce is seeking a publisher for the 2023-2024 issue of “Experience Southeast Kentucky,” the official visitor and relocation guide for the region and the Chamber’s membership directory. This Profile Book is a biennial publication with a circulation of 5,000 printed copies.

View a digital copy of the 2021-2022 issue by visiting

Company Overview
Our Mission is to serve the businesses of Southeastern Kentucky through our commitment to networking, advocacy, education, and collaboration as we partner together to enhance the business climate in our region.

Our Vision is a region that ignores county lines in the name of economic growth and improving the quality of life for our citizens.

Our Values
Unity – We believe that economic progress in our region is directly related to our ability to effectively unite as a single voice agreeing on a strategic plan.
Integrity – We believe in demonstrating the strength, moral principles, honesty and ethics that warrant the trust of the community.
Leadership – We believe that the community can only grow and prosper if we have the courage to be bold in our vision and stand by our convictions.
Service – We value a commitment to service and believe responsibility and duty are imperative to enrich the community.

Key Objectives
The Chamber is looking for a publisher that is passionate about growing East Kentucky and can use that passion to expand the Chamber brand and highlight regional assets and companies. The Chamber has two main objectives for working with a publisher:

  1. Create a high-quality publication that can be utilized by eastern Kentucky companies and citizens as a marketing piece as well as by visitors to gain a better understanding of our attractions and services.
  2. Generate non-dues revenue for the Chamber to assist in carrying out the Chamber mission.

Publishing Approach
The ideal publisher is one that will publish and distribute these publications at no cost to the Chamber. Preference will be given to publishers whose proposals demonstrate a willingness and ability to:
  1. Strategically expand the current reach of the Book and develop its online presence.
  2. Aggressively expand the revenue base to provide a profit to the publishing company and deliver a predictable and reliable revenue share to the Chamber.

Copyrights & Ownership
The Chamber shall maintain full and exclusive rights, including copyrights and usage of the title and all contents considered to be intellectual property. This includes editorial materials, advertisements, advertising contracts, circulation data, and conceptual and finished artwork, photographs, etc. In case of termination for any reason, the publisher would agree to provide these materials to the Chamber within 30 days.

Editorial Scope & Pre‐Production
The Book should be co‐developed by the publisher and the Chamber. The Chamber will approve editorials (including an editorial planning guide), however the publisher is required to produce all editorials. The Chamber can provide interview contact information and other insights to assist writers, if requested.

Production & Printing
The Book production is the responsibility of the publisher, but the Chamber will advise on cover concepts and other artwork used in the Book and can provide images that will help in the design process. For the directory, the Chamber will provide the content for front matter and all listings, and the publisher will be responsible for production and printing from that point. The Chamber will proofread the directory for accuracy before printing.

The Book must be printed perfectly bound in full-color with the same quality of paper (gloss and weight) as the 2021-22 edition. The Chamber will provide a copy of the edition as a sample upon request. A “dummy” or complete mock-up of the publication must be provided for the Chamber’s review before going to final print.

The Book publisher must also have the capability to provide a high-resolution, digital copy of the publication in pdf.

Circulation / Distribution
The Chamber will provide circulation of the publications through its Membership Development Manager, events/programs, and other channels to ensure wide distribution and exposure.

Advertising Revenue
Revenue sources for the publisher include both member and non-member advertising in the publication. The Chamber will provide membership lists (including contact information), as well as a copy of the two most recent publications. The publisher is encouraged to add additional prospects from other sources.

The publisher should work closely with the Chamber to establish and maintain an ad-rate that provides at least a 10% discount to member companies that advertise. Advertising by non‐member companies is strongly encouraged, as the universe of advertisers is larger than current membership.

Page Count & Ad/Editorial Ratio
The Chamber recognizes that the publisher will determine the exact page count for the publication based on advertising sold, however the Chamber recommends a page count of 150-160. Advertisements may comprise up to 50 percent of the content.

Information Sharing
The Book and the directory serve as membership development and retention tools, and as such, it is imperative that the Chamber and the publisher share information, which must be regarded as proprietary and confidential. The publisher is expected to be proactive in maintaining an accurate prospect database, sharing leads to use in membership development, and communicating potential opportunities for membership development promptly with the Chamber. Although it is not the job of the publisher to sell membership, the open and proactive communication about membership prospects is an essential and mutually beneficial part of the relationship.

Demonstrated Experience
Preference will be given to publishers that demonstrate experience and expertise with similar publications (samples must be provided), and who can illustrate how those publications have grown in the marketplace. We expect an outside publisher to exceed the boundaries of traditional, formulaic approaches that tend to limit growth of revenues and circulation. It is our desire to work with a publisher that will demonstrate the flexibility and innovation to expand this publication into an integrated communications instrument that is recognized as a formidable sector leader.

Budgetary Impact
There should be no cost to the Chamber. Strong preference will be given to publishers that provide an innovative means of covering costs, while also providing a well‐structured revenue share for the Chamber.

Deadline & Schedule
Proposals must be submitted by the close-of-business on February 3, 2023. The Southeast Kentucky Chamber of Commerce’s Board of Directors will review proposals and a publisher will be selected by February 17, 2023. The completed Book must be delivered for the Chamber’s 2023 Annual Awards Night event in August/September. Widespread distribution will begin immediately after the event. The exact date of the event will be communicated once confirmed.

Proposal Due – February 3, 2023
Publisher Selected – February 17, 2023
Book Delivered – August 31, 2023

Submission Guidelines
Written proposals must not exceed 10 pages, including the cover letter. The 10-page maximum does not include sample work submissions. A hard-copy original must be provided for review. In addition, electronic copies of the complete proposal in pdf must be submitted to

Contact Information
For more information contact Jordan Gibson, president and chief executive officer of the Southeast Kentucky Chamber of Commerce.

Jordan Gibson, President & CEO
Southeast Kentucky Chamber of Commerce

The Southeast Kentucky Chamber of Commerce is located at 178 College Street in Pikeville and serves more than 500 businesses in eight Eastern Kentucky Counties: Floyd, Johnson, Knott, Lawrence, Letcher, Magoffin, Martin, and Pike. The Chamber’s mission is to serve the businesses of Southeastern Kentucky through a commitment to networking, advocacy, education, and collaboration as we partner together to enhance the business climate in our region.
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