March 1, 2016 - Traditional concert promoters turn sizeable profits. And yet we frequently find casinos unknowingly foregoing tens of thousands of dollars because they are stuck on the notion of entertainment as a loss leader. The fact that a venue has slot machines does not necessarily justify settling for mediocre deals on artists, ticket fees, production equipment, or any other concert-related expense.
Considering the substantial investment that casinos make in their entertainment programs, entertainment services providers are left wondering why so many casinos are content with the status quo with little interest in exploring options for significantly increasing their bottom lines.
In many industries, it is common practice to invite service providers to compete in an RFP (request for proposal) process intended to objectively seek out the vendor providing the greatest value. Incumbent service providers are sometimes insecure, seeing RFPs as a sign of disloyalty or distrust, or perhaps an indication that he/she has done a poor job. But those who are confident about their services actually see RFPs as opportunities to enhance trust by solidifying their position as the ideal candidate.
An incumbent service provider who opposes or fears the RFP process has perhaps become too comfortable in the job and failed to innovate, thus placing the casino at a serious disadvantage. But vendor selection is not a popularity contest or test of loyalty. In fact, loyalty must go both ways; a loyal service provider continues to innovate for the betterment of his/her clients.
The key to keeping vendors on their feet is to force them to compete. And as an entertainment vendor, Yapsody is no exception. Yapsody has competed in many RFPs over the years. But regardless of whether we win or lose, in the long run, we always believe that this process invariably yields the best outcome for both the casino and the tribe.
While the RFP process may sound a bit daunting to manage, it’s actually quite simple and straightforward as most of the burden is actually on the vendors. For your reference, below is our top-10 list of best RFP questions we have come across over the years. They get vendors talking and help you narrow down a pool of candidates. Feel free to borrow them:
TOP-10 LIST OF RFP QUESTIONS: Get your vendors talking
Describe your company’s level of expertise, past experiences in rendering service for venues like ours, and results you achieved.
Describe how you intend to provide us with the highest level of service for ensuring that we are a leading entertainment provider in our market.
Describe your company’s services and the extent to which they are outsourced to third parties.
Describe your company’s philosophy and approach for helping clients meet their business and marketing objectives.
Describe what would be your ideal customer and why.
Provide an explanation of a challenged account and how you resolved its situation constructively.
Describe unique and creative ways of providing value to your clients that set you apart from your competition.
Describe your strategy and approach to casino entertainment.
Provide an organizational chart and a description of expertise, capabilities, and credentials for each key person who will be regularly rendering services to the casino.
Describe your philosophy on pricing/fees for your services.