New Idaho Fish and Game licensing system gives buyers more options and features

Idaho Fish and Game has launched a new licensing system with a new contractor, and hunters, anglers and trappers will see new and more customer friendly services and options when buying licenses, tags and permits.

Buyers will have a variety of new options available when they purchase from gooutdoorsidaho.com, including:

  • No password required to log in to your account. Other information will be used so you can get into your account. 
  • Auto-renew feature that allow you to get new licenses automatically before the current ones expire. 
  • Option to store a payment method securely on file for buying convenience. 
  • Optional “hard card” puts your license and other permits (not tags or permits that need to be notched) on a durable plastic card that’s the same size and shape as a credit card. 
  • Licenses bought online are instantly valid by printing a copy or storing it digitally on your smart phone. 
  • Updated tag menu shows what tags are available for purchase, and when you put a tag in your shopping cart, it’s guaranteed available for a limited amount of time so you can finish your purchase without worrying about all tags selling out. 
  • Multiple ways to fill out mandatory hunter reports, including a quick log-in feature.
  • “Go Outdoors Idaho” phone app is available on the Apple App Store and Google play. You can download the apps for ease of buying licenses and tags, applying for controlled hunts, tracking up to five family members’ purchases, filing mandatory hunter reports, and more.

State game agencies aren’t engaging nearly enough new folks, or capturing their potential license dollars

Hunter numbers have been declining from an all-time high in the early ’80s. And when the alarm bells started ringing more than a decade ago, our collective response time was abysmal. First, the hunting industry had to admit there was a problem. Next, we had to understand what we’d been doing wrong. Now that state agencies and conservation groups have finally identified which programs work, they’re trying to act on that intel. Meanwhile, according to the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service, we’ve lost 255,195 hunters nationwide between 2016 and 2020.

OutdoorLife.com “In the Future: The New Guard Will Save Hunting (and the Old-Timers Are Going to Help)”

Hurricane Laura Relief Efforts

Brandt team members raised funds and delivered supplies to help individuals in need after Hurricane Laura’s destruction in Lake Charles, Louisiana. A group of senior adults with disabilities lost their homes and everything in them following the devastating storm. Employees contributed to the Brandt Hurricane Laura Relief Fund and within two weeks, Matt Mitchell, Director of Business Development at Brandt, was driving a trailer filled with gear to Louisiana. Donations included bedding, cleaning supplies, utensils, salt & pepper, cooking supplies, and towels.

The Southwest Louisiana Independence Center (SLIC), an organization that provides advocacy, peer counseling, and independent living services to persons with significant disabilities, was grateful for the support. “Thank you so much for your compassion and generosity towards our clients,” said Christina Dartez, RN from SLIC. “Our clients were so excited when they made it home and saw everything they had. My team was completely blown away by everything that was donated and your kindness. You turned a tragic event into something positive and made their apartments so nice for when they returned home.”

Brandt regularly finds opportunities to support communities in need. “Our team at Brandt is fortunate to be growing. We are Go Givers and feel the need to share our success with those that need it most,” said Mitchell.


Southwest Louisiana Independence Center, Inc. (@SLIC), a 501 C-3 non-profit agency, is a non-residential agency of action, advocacy and coalition where persons with disabilities and the elderly can become empowered to develop the skills necessary to make effective lifestyle choices. We strive to support those with disabilities and our elderly by connecting them with resources needed to live independently. We offer services for their support in becoming or remaining active participants in their communities. Through collaboration, we promote their independent living through our various programs. Our aim is to enable those with disabilities to take control of their lives, make decisions about their future and ultimately avoid unnecessary institutionalization.

In 1985, @SLIC opened its doors in Lake Charles, Louisiana. The organization, like many of its kind nationally, recognizes living an independent life is a fundamental human right. Before organizations like @SLIC existed, living a life of dependency and low satisfaction were common for disabled individuals and their families. Besides employment opportunities, job coaching and job training, @SLIC provides awareness advocacy and independent living for persons with disabilities.

Brandt Information Services Expands Tallahassee Office

TALLAHASSEE, Fla. (September 30, 2020) – Brandt Information Services (Brandt) announces it is expanding its Tallahassee headquarters by acquiring the 208 W. Carolina Street and 209 W. Georgia Street properties, located across the street from its current office.

“This exciting opportunity is part of the growth of our team and services,” said Richard Wise, President of Brandt. “Our new property will support a campus-like environment, including training labs, on-site housing for remote employee visits, enhanced parking and safety, and outdoor green space including eating/grilling areas.”

The purchase expands Brandt’s downtown Tallahassee headquarters by an additional 2.26 acres, more than doubling its current footprint. This space will help accommodate Brandt’s growing team of over 200 full-time and part-time employees, which includes 25 new full time employee hires since January 2020.  

Brandt provides technology solutions, marketing strategies, and consulting services, including software, development and mobile apps to support natural resource agencies, particularly in the outdoor recreational space.

“We are committed to being a nationally recognized employer of choice that includes providing a workspace where employees collaborate and thrive,” said Wise . “As we continue to grow as a leader in our space, we are dedicated to helping attract and cultivate talent in this field.”


About Brandt

Brandt Information Services offers innovative technology solutions to support natural resource agencies by promoting outdoor participation, customer outreach, marketing, and streamlining business operations through customized recreational licensing & registration solutions. Brandt’s growth in the industry is backed by their customer-first partnership approach and industry-first features which has resulted in expansion of state agency partnerships across the country. For over 34 years, Brandt has offered local, state, and federal agencies and private organizations best in class technology solutions and services.

Mobile App Expands Georgia DNR Birding Wildlife Trails Program

SOCIAL CIRCLE – Seeing wildlife while exploring historic sites along Georgia’s coast is easier and more engaging thanks to a new website and app features announced recently by the Georgia Department of Natural Resources.

The launch of georgiabirdingtrails.com and the addition of a trail function to the Go Outdoors Georgia app are part of DNR Wildlife Resources Division’s efforts to expand its Georgia Birding and Wildlife Trails program. The upgrades offer improved accessibility to wildlife viewing resources and support Georgia’s strong interest in birding and other wildlife watching, activities that pack a $2 billion annual economic impact statewide.

The Colonial Coast Birding Trail has also been added to the free Go Outdoors GA app developed by Brandt Information Services. The mobile platform provides an on-the-go resource for trail users to learn about trail sites, get directions, keep a species checklist and browse recent eBird sightings. And even more upgrades are coming soon.

Visit georgiabirdingtrails.com to learn more about Colonial Coast Birding Trail sites, brush up on birding basics, download the mobile app and print a species checklist to carry with you. Hit the trail and discover why so many people are Wild about Georgia.

Amplify Your Licensing Story

Download "Social Influencers"

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WHITEPAPER PREVIEW:

Video Content Marketing & Social Media Influencers

The evolution of video content marketing and social media has increased revenues and high value presence for public agencies in the new, fun, and measurable tactics. The beauty of the authentic and shareable messages lies in their ability to connect with a potential outdoors advocate and converting them into a new customer. Organic sharing takes over,
delighting new, lapsed, and existing customers equally.

Authenticity over Perfection

As state agencies providing resources to the public, we often prioritize perfection over authenticity. However, when hiring third party content producers, it is important that you give them the freedom to promote your product in a unique, authentic manner.

A social influencer video clip which is micromanaged or over-critiqued may likely finding itself closer to the holiday movie look or even worse
– out of season and unable to be used.

While breaking the communication mold with real life short clips, the content is relatable to the common user of social media. Well-used equipment or an influencer who looks more like someone who would show up to a family reunion than a holiday movie set results in more engaged content – the emotional tie begins to form.

Raw, real life videos also benefit from significant reductions in postproduction turnaround time which many are accustomed.

Spring 2020 Generated Revenue

With a combined investment of $58,000, Brandt, in collaboration with its state agency partners, was able to produce 11 videos that generated $117,000 in state agency revenue, not to mention the incredible earned media value. The created assets will continue to be used to drive awareness and system revenue.
(Combined investment includes influencer payment, video production, and digital ad spend.)

DOWNLOAD THE FULL WHITEPAPER ABOVE.

How Fishing Became the Pandemic’s Hottest Sport

The state of Vermont has already sold more fishing licenses in 2020 than all of last year. In the latest installment of TODAY’s Harry Smith Goes To… series, Harry investigates why fishing has become a hot new trend during the coronavirus pandemic. Afterward, he and the TODAY anchors share fishing memories.

Virginia Refer A Friend to Fish Campaign Case Study

In 2019, the Virginia Department of Game & Inland Fisheries (DGIF) launched the Refer-A-Friend To Fish campaign in April with the objective of motivating current licensed anglers in Virginia to recruit new people to fish. Virginia also focused on improving the marketing strategy implemented earlier in 2018. This was done with social media advertising along with an earlier campaign launch to coincide with the spring fishing season.

These changes resulted in an increase in the following:

  • The total number of referral codes generated: 1,378 (up 102 compared to 2018)
    • 12% referred more than 1 person, which demonstrates the effectiveness of the monthly sweepstakes to motivate anglers to generate multiple codes
  • The number of new customers who used referral codes: 605 (up 167 compared to 2018)
  • Total net revenue: $18,778 (up $5,865 compared to 2018)

For full results and additional details read the case study in its entirety.

Positive Change During COVID-19 Pandemic

Facing unprecedented situations, Brandt implemented business continuity plans and precautionary measures to minimize disruption to our clients and maximize our efforts to keep our team members and clients safe during the COVID-19 pandemic.

COLLABORATIVE EFFORTS

  • Business Continuity: Leadership Team is in regular contact with each other and observing local, state, and federal updates in order to monitor the situation and ensure that we are deploying best practices.
  • Travel: Paused all non-essential business travel for our team members. Utilized virtual technology to connect with partners and team members to avoid any disruption or delay.
  • Workplace Hygiene: Offices receive an increased level of workplace cleaning. We are actively communicating our guidelines around general safety and hygiene to our employees and partners.
  • Remote Support: Ensuring the quality and security of our services, we implemented remote support for all employees, including Call Center agents.
  • Agency Support: Coordinated state agency leadership conference call to allow our state partners to collaboratively and candidly discuss their situations, as well as created a private online forum to share resources.
  • Marketing Support: Monitored daily digital advertising activity, adjusted messaging relevancy, and implemented new tactics to continue to evolve with the changing times.

OUR GUIDING PRINCIPLES

  • Take Care of Customers First
  • Take Care of Each Other
  • Do the Right Thing

The Remote Transition

We pride ourselves on our in-house Call Center team members who are within a short walk of the full development and leadership team. Our direct oversight and collaborative training procedures have allowed us to provide superior customer service and support. Although increased workplace cleaning and workplace safety and hygiene measures were in place, we felt the need to transition our Call Center team members to remote support during this time. Once the decision was made, our team transitioned to working from home within a few short days. It was no small task for our crew. Not only was the transition smooth, we increased customer call satisfaction:

TOOLS & TECHNOLOGY

Our IT team proactively ordered equipment that has since become unavailable for several months due to increased demand. We met with our PCI (Payment Card Industry) auditors very early in the process to ensure security compliance for our remote employees.

To overcome the lack of in-person collaboration and supervision as a result of the remote transition, we leveraged tools for digital monitoring and individual feedback for improvement. Group chats, video conferencing, and screensharing became even more critical for asking questions and sharing information.

HUMAN RESOURCES

Today, the only few team members reporting to Brandt offices are those who do not have suitable space / settings for working from home such as lack of space, internet or distractions. We also have several employees who have had to take a leave of absence. When this pandemic began impacting our operations, we were in the process of hiring and onboarding many call center agents. This was put on hold as we navigated our remote support transition and our hiring and on-boarding has now resumed to peak performance. This five-week pause meant a decrease in available agents to answer calls. We are currently hiring and remotely training a majority of our new team members and have already completed two rounds of training.

CUSTOMER MENTALITY – “SERVE AND SELL”

Refreshingly, the public customers were generally not concerned about COVID when they were calling into our Call Center. They understood that things were different, and they may need to change the way they obtained certain services, but they were still as excited to camp, hunt, fish, and boat at the majority of our partners facilities. This excitement continued to be the major undertone of the calls which contributed to our positive team mentality.

Daily messaging to the Call Center team was to “Serve and Sell”. If we have customers who call with a desire to use our partner’s facilities and make a reservation or purchase – our MAIN GOAL was to get them to that end.

CALL VOLUME

There are several factors that increased call volume during COVID-19:

  • Increased call length time: Customers who previously made reservations in-park (walk-ins) or purchased licenses at physical locations were now forced to purchase online. Many calls were simply walking the customer through their first online reservation or purchase which takes longer than regular phone requests.
  • Increased responsibilities: To help offset the lack of agency in-office staff, we took on several additional services for our partners, including processing lifetime applications and commercial applications. These workflows also increased the average length of calls.
  • Increased call volume: Increased demand for campsites and the new online users who were calling to ensure reservations were intact (albeit they receive confirmation email or text SMS).
  • Drastic and unpredicted traffic spikes: Keeping us on our toes, the spikes in call volume traffic did not follow traditional trends. Weekly fluctuations ranged from being down 30% from expected volumes to being up 30% (1,400 calls in one week for the state of Georgia alone).

To mitigate the increased call volume, it was all hands-on deck. Anyone trained and able to answer calls pitched in, starting work early and staying late. Even though we did not always shine on our required Service Level Agreements, we maintained the focus on customer service and did a great job keeping those metrics satisfactory.

SUCCESS FACTORS

We believe the following key factors to be imperative in our success:

  • Be Proactive. Anticipate and plan early for potential technology, hardware, and personnel needs.
  • Be Honest. Communicate risks, concerns, and non-issues in order to focus on what truly needed to be addressed and what the alternatives were.
  • Trust Each Other. Proceed in unison regardless of differing opinions on best steps forward.
  • Find A Way.  We may not know everything or what is involved, but we solve together.
  • The Right People. The power is in our team members who have positive attitudes to tackle each challenge.

A TIME TO SHINE

Our agency partners and the public has reached out to us privately and in very public ways to show their appreciation for us during this time. COVID-19 has and will continue to change our lives in many ways but for some of our team they embraced the stress and uncertainty to shine in their service to customers.

Here are a few recent public examples:

Hello Mr. Wise,
Just a quick note to let you know how much we appreciate the service my husband and I received today from Mrs. Gardner. I am not sure how (my husband is convinced I threw them away) but we lost our new registration/tags for our jet ski.  Husband rang your office today and spoke with Mrs. Gardner who was ever so gracious enough to send us a new set. He fessed up and told her he is sure we tossed the mail out (he thinks I did ???? ) and she was quick to say no problem, we will just mail you a new set without question. We truly appreciate her kind service and helping us secure the replacement tags. She was a joy and we just wanted to make sure she was recognized for same.Have a wonderful day! Take care…
Lynn Durham, Agent
Goochland County Farm Bureau

WE TEACH EACH OTHER

We all have an opportunity to learn from one another to hopefully become more efficient and adaptable for the next local or worldwide event which forces us to re-think and implement our services. Together, we can make the most of the toughest situations with partnership and teamwork.

Tennessee Geofencing Digital Marketing Case Study

Last year the TN Wildlife Resources Agency (TWRA) used grant funding to target customers with digital advertising in specific locations at events. Using geofencing, they were able to reach people without a TN fishing license account, or those folks that had a lapsed account of 18 months or more. These consumers were served digital ads during a Nashville Farmers Market and the Wilderness Wildlife Festival in Pigeon Forge that encouraged them to buy a license and go fishing.

With a $10,800 investment, the geofencing campaign showed:

  • 1.4 million impressions.
  • 8,814 conversions to license purchase.
  • Over $250,000 in revenue!

For complete results and additional details, please read the full case study.