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Going Local

The Challenge

The Massachusetts owners of Home Instead Senior Care, a provider of non-medical in-home care, approached us to provide public relations support, including events, focused only on Massachusetts. The program would be managed by the in-state Home Instead owners.

We were hired to raise awareness within Massachusetts that seniors can age and be cared for in their own homes, an alternative to assisted living facilities.

We faced two challenges: in-home care is an increasingly competitive sector and the content developed by the corporate office in Omaha, NE lacked the strong local flavor necessary to do business in Massachusetts. The owners asked us to identify local trends and themes to pitch local media over a multi-year campaign.

Strategic Execution At Work

Leveraging content developed in Omaha, when possible (so as to not recreate the wheel), we developed new content that addressed issues facing local seniors while also addressing concerns of adult children and other family caregivers have in trying to make sure their parents are healthy and safe.

We identified and distributed information to address key issues like senior driving tips, how to tell your parents they need to stop driving, winter-storm survival tips, etc. We also addresses Alzheimer's awareness, aging in place, and loneliness among seniors around the holidays.

For the driving tips and how to tell your parents they need to stop driving, we not only developed a tip sheet and wrote op-eds that appeared in dozens of key community weekly newspapers; we also conducted the Senior Safe Driving Symposium, an in-person event in a centrally located community that provided another channel to reach adult children concerned about their parents' safety behind the wheel. We also secured an online chats with the Boston Globe on the topic.

Additionally, we wrote and placed bylined articles on a range of relevant public policy topics and conducted editorial roundtable discussions with the Boston Globe and Worcester Telegram & Gazette.

  • We identified and developed new content to pitch to local and regional print, TV, cable and radio.
  • We developed a quarterly program that took advantage of season events (such as Breast
    Cancer Awareness Month in Oct., Alzheimer's Awareness Month in Nov., and lonely seniors
    at Christmas in Dec.)
  • We researched and developed tip sheets on safety, wellness and other issues, such as "10 Ways Seniors Can Stretch Their Dollars," "10 Cost-Cutting Warning Signs," "How to Talk to Your Parents to Give up Driving," etc. These topics were based on local trends and issues we identified as being of interest to local media.

The Results

Our team got to know the different owners, their particular interests and comfort level with the media, and generated coverage that hit key media in their region.

We generated strong local and regional coverage for the owners, including the Boston Globe, Boston Herald, Boston Business Journal, WBZ-AM, Patriot Ledger, Worcester Telegram & Gazette, Worcester Business Journal, Metrowest Daily News, WEEI, ESPN Radio, and dozens more.

Our work raised awareness of each of the franchises in Massachusetts, drove traffic to a specially created, first-of-its-kind regional Home Instead Senior Care website, and promoted the owners as thought leaders in their communities. The campaigns also helped raise awareness among key influencers who make referrals for home care.

Highlights included:

  • Placed dozens of op-ed articles on important issues such as senior driving safety and CORI reform regarding caregivers in regional outlets including the Boston Herald and Boston Business
    Journal, Worcester Telegram & Gazette.
  • Secured bylined articles in key owner markets, including the MetroWest Daily News, Patriot Ledger, Andover Eagle-Tribune, Arlington Advocate, Concord Journal, Dennis Register, Malden
    Observer, Norwood Daily News Transcript, Saugus
    Advertiser, Waltham Daily News Tribune, Winchester Star, Yarmouth Register, etc. Also generated social media coverage and broadcast coverage in WBZ-AM, WEEI, ESPN Radio, and dozens more across the state.
  • Developed concept and supported events like a senior driving safety roundtable that led to a Boston Globe article and an online chat.
  • Positioned the Massachusetts owners as thought leaders, developing op-ed articles and editorial roundtable discussions.

During our second year:

  • We tripled the print coverage generated over the prior year, generating more than 150 articles as compared to 30 a year earlier.
  • We increased broadcast coverage more than 700 percent, from 5 placements to 38, securing more than 1,140 minutes of airtime.
  • We reached more than 5.6 million readers across Massachusetts.

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