PENTA gives Big Brothers Big Sisters an extreme marketing makeover

FRAMINGHAM _ Working on a shoestring budget is synonymous with a non-profit organization. For many professionals in the not-for-profit arena that often means making difficult decisions as well as instituting cost-cutting measures. So when Big Brothers Big Sisters of Central Mass/Metrowest, Inc. found out they had won an extreme marketing makeover from PENTA Communications, Inc. at the Corridor Nine Chamber’s, Open for Business Expo earlier this year, they felt like they hit the jackpot.

Big Brothers Big Sisters of Central Mass/Metrowest, Inc.’s mission is to “provide children facing adversity with strong and enduring, professionally supported one-to-one relationships that change their lives for the better, forever.” The agency, with offices in Worcester and Framingham, serves 40 cities and towns, from Acton down to Webster and across to Sturbridge. Big Brothers Big Sisters enhances the quality of life for at-risk children and their families by matching these children in professionally supported mentoring relationships with responsible and caring volunteers. According to Vice President of Development Amy Standish Chick, the organization differs from other mentorship organizations by focusing on one-on-one mentoring that has a proven and measurable positive impact.

This year the national agency, Big Brothers Big Sisters of America, has instituted “Start Something” – a new rebranding campaign that changes the non-profit’s overall messaging and slogan, according to Marketing & Recruitment Manager Erin Harper. This national initiative invites all adults – not just volunteers — to support quality mentoring to help children who face adversity beat the odds.

While the rebranding is designed to increase visibility of the nonprofit’s mission in addition to increasing the amount of youths the agency serves (last year the Central Mass/Metrowest agency served 1,389 youth), the rebranding efforts require a significant amount of additional expenses.

“Rebranding costs a lot of money, and it’s difficult to know where that money can come from,” Harper said.

And while there is rebranding collateral that the national agency has available, there is a cost associated with it.

“All Big Brothers Big Sisters agencies are independent 501(c)(3) organizations that are affiliated with and supported by the national Big Brothers Big Sisters. They provide us with other support and resources,” Chick noted.

“We’re so excited to be working with PENTA Communications, Inc.,” Chick said.

“We were also delighted that Big Brothers Big Sisters won the makeover, especially on the heels of the organization’s national rebranding launch,” said Deborah Penta, CEO of PENTA Communications, Inc. “We are very pleased to provide this level of support to the non-profit organization and our entire team is excited about creating an impactful and successful marketing program.”

“The timing of winning this was just amazing,” Harper added. “Working with a company like PENTA Communications, Inc. is more than we could have asked for to help us with our website and additional marketing tools.”

PENTA Communications, Inc. will be revamping the Big Brothers Big Sisters of Central Mass/Metrowest website, as well as putting together new marketing, recruitment and fund development materials.

“We want to provide a dynamic website that people will be drawn to,” Chick said. “More and more people are going to websites for their information, and we want to be able to provide the resources and information to those in the community, our volunteers, our donors, and our partners.”

According to Chick, this fall, the non-profit will be launching an Annual Appeal in which PENTA Communications, Inc. will play an integral role.

“PENTA Communications, Inc. will be helping with this targeted mailing. We need to let people know that we’re losing $200k in funding due to federal budget cutbacks. Big Brothers Big Sisters will continue to serve the growing need in our community, but we need the help and support of individuals, corporate partners, and those in the community,” Chick said. “PENTA Communications, Inc. has been so wonderful to help us get our message out and help us with consistent branding and collateral. We’re very excited to be working with such a professional company.”

Over the past 20 years, PENTA Communications has helped numerous non-profit organizations improve marketing programs to achieve results and in addition, has been a significant philanthropic contributor to the nonprofit community in Massachusetts through fundraising, fund development, and the generosity of numerous sponsorships and donations.