New agency based in Newburyport, MA targets emerging companies and SMBs in tech, healthcare, consumer and non-profit markets; mid-2014 Cambridge expansion planned H3
April 1, 2014, Newburyport, Mass. — A new integrated communications agency that bridges the gap between larger firms and solo practitioners officially launched today as Pilot Communications Group, LLC. Serving technology, healthcare and consumer companies as well as non-profits, Pilot addresses the need for a broader approach to communications supported by accomplished, hands-on public relations, public affairs and creative professionals.
“For many smaller and mid-size clients, larger agencies are pure overkill, with clients subsidizing resources they’ll never use and office real estate they’ll rarely see,” said Jim Barbagallo, Pilot’s founder and CEO. “At the same time, while solo practitioners play an important role for lots of companies, they can quickly become resource constrained, finding it difficult to keep pace with a client’s increased demands. Pilot is addressing that gap, combining the reach and perspective of larger firms with the hands-on focus and entrepreneurial mindset of individual communications consultants.”
Pilot is engineered to serve emerging and mid-size organizations with a core team of senior communications professionals who have founded and/or run successful agencies and a network of partner firms and proven experts in a range of marketing communications disciplines.
“The Pilot team not only provides deep business and communications experience and access to key influencers and opinion leaders, but also a deep understanding of traditional and new digital communications strategies that are reshaping how companies and their customers engage with each other,” Barbagallo said.
The agency began working with clients earlier this year and is currently supporting the following:
- Cortex MCP, Cambridge – a technology company that has developed a new, secure foundational platform for mobile wallets,
- CLVboost, Cambridge — a marketing automation consulting firm that is helping small businesses achieve greater customer lifetime value (CLV), and
- Two Ten Footwear Foundation, Waltham – the footwear industry’s national charitable foundation, Two Ten provides emergency financial assistance, including college scholarships, to footwear industry workers and their families.
Barbagallo spent 11 years in Boston as a managing director and partner with Porter Novelli, a global PR firm. He also worked in leadership client and operational roles at Morrissey & Company and PAN Communications, also in Boston, in addition to corporate positions at HP and Digital. Barbagallo is joined by two experienced communications executives:
- Tony Sapienza co-founded and ran Topaz Partners, a PR firm, for 10 years – and led breakthrough campaigns for emerging and global tech clients at global firms Weber Shandwick and Miller Communications, and
- Tom Maher, a public affairs and healthcare communications professional who has been operating TPM Communications for 10 years. A former co-founder/partner of The Edison Group, a national public affairs agency, Maher serves as a regional director of the Healthcare Leadership Council (HLC).
Pilot is headquartered in Newburyport, which is emerging as a hub for the region’s creative community. The agency plans to establish a presence in Cambridge’s Kendall Square innovation district in mid-2014.