Baystate Financial Services

Challenge

Baystate Financial Services is one of New England’s oldest and largest privately-owned financial institutions offering clients a unique service model that crafts specific solutions to meet clients personal financial needs. Baystate’s wide range of services – financial planning, insurance, estate planning, business strategies, employee benefits, education and retirement funding strategies and investment management services – help clients achieve financial success by enabling them to protect their assets and plan for their future.

During the past 110 years, Baystate has achieved tremendous growth – it now includes more than 200 fulltime advisers and offices in five states. Despite its unique operating model and success, Baystate Financial had received limited recognition as a major player in the local and regional business community. O’Neill and Associates was retained in 2010 to further elevate the profile of this leading financial services firm; increase the visibility of its stable of financial services professionals in the media and among potential clients; provide opportunities for Baystate advisors to promote their individual practices; and solidify Baystate Financial and Baystate Wealth Management as a center of thought leadership in the financial services sector.

Solution

O’Neill and Associates launched a multifaceted public relations campaign to increase Baystate’s public profile which included crafting messaging, developing a comprehensive media relations campaign and implementing an internal communications strategy. O’Neill and Associates identified opportunities for Baystate Financial and Baystate Wealth professionals to be quoted and interviewed in local and regional news outlets as well as expanding and targeting opportunities with trade publications. The team also developed story ideas surrounding trends and patterns in investing and asset management; company milestones; additional story ideas to capitalize on current state of the economy; and items for press releases or company announcements. In addition, O’Neill and Associates helped to create new internal communications mechanisms that allowed Baystate advisors to capitalize on the public relations efforts of the company and further elevated the profile of Baystate. Materials included, quarterly public relations newsletter highlighting recent media, development of a public relations protocol for advisors and development of company-wide talking points. O’Neill and Associates identified events and speaking opportunities for senior leadership and worked to expand the company’s philanthropic arm, Baystate Charitable Foundation, by developing a more long-term and strategic approach to its operation.

Results

As a result of the efforts of O’Neill and Associates, the team has successfully elevated the profile of the company and its management, as well as showcased Baystate’s expertise and thought leadership in the financial industry. These public relations efforts helped contribute to a number of successes for Baystate including awards such as the Boston Business Journal’s Most Admired CEO and Boston Business Journal’s Best Places to Work.

Through O’Neill and Associates’ one-on-one work with individual advisors the company was able to leverage additional opportunities beyond the greater Boston market, resulting in additional brand awareness, market recognition and increased client development. Baystate has been featured, often on several occasions, in local, regional and national media outlets such as, Boston GlobeBoston Business JournalBoston HeraldNational Journal, NECN, Fox 25, Financial Advisor MagazineFinancial MagazineMetroWest Daily News, Worcester Telegram and GazetteWorcester Business Journal, Providence Business NewsMaine AheadWakefield Observer, DailyFinance.com, and a variety of AOL Patch online outlets.

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