Impact Communications Celebrates 30th Anniversary

Founder Marie Swift focused on “best and brightest” in financial services industry, embracing Kaizen, signature 3-D framework, and including clients in “family first” culture


Impact Communications, an award-winning strategic marketing and PR firm that helps independent financial advisory firms and adjacent financial services companies build strong brands and polish their reputations, has reached a new milestone. The firm just realized its 30th anniversary and has embarked on a yearlong celebration to extend its success.

From the launch of the firm in August 1993, founder and CEO Marie Swift made the decision to only work with the best and brightest in the financial services realm. The company’s strategy and standards have been driven by Impact’s 3D-framework – Dedicated, Discerning, Driven – and other strategic guiding principles, making it one of the oldest and most respected niche-focused PR and marketing firms exclusively serving independent financial advisors and allied institutions (custodians, IBDs, fintech firms, adjunct consultants, etc.).

Thirty years after Swift launched Impact as a sole proprietor, Impact has grown to a staff of 14 that has served more than 325 financial planning and investment advisory firms, financial services firms and institutions, book authors, and adjacent industry influentials and thought leaders.

Yearlong celebration plans include: 

    • An anniversary seal and reflective blog post in August
    • A website and social media refresh in September
    • Commemorative videos with key clients in October
    • Celebration gifts to clients in November
    • A special team celebration in December
    • Staff promotions and bonuses in December/January
    • A new enhancement to the Fiduciary Voices platform in January/February
    • A strategic executive retreat in March/April
    • Client testimonials videos series in May/June
    • A capstone blog and video in July


“Being dedicated and driven are self-explanatory, but being discerning is our biggest differentiator,” said Swift. “It’s what sets us apart from competitors and is a key factor in strategic business decisions.” Impact is selective when it comes to choosing clients. Swift and her executive leadership team take the time to make sure the potential client is a good fit for the company’s mission of serving advisory teams and financial services firms that embrace the fiduciary standard – and that Impact is a good fit for the client (Swift emphasizes that clients must be mission-driven and provide challenging, meaningful work) – to ensure a great partnership and mutual success.

The company’s longevity and growth have been fueled by a spirit of constant and never-ending improvement – or “kaizen”, which is derived from the Japanese words Kai, meaning change, and Zen, meaning good. Kaizen = change is good.

“As we grew, we began to receive unsolicited kudos and ‘atta team’ notes from our clients,” stated Swift. “One even sent a very nice unsolicited bonus check to thank us for going above and beyond the required service plan. We are proud of the multi-year client relationships we’ve built and have many inactive clients who return after a lull in urgent or strategic activity to reengage with our dedicated, discerning, driven team.”


Another success factor has been the company’s early adoption of a virtual workforce. According to Swift, “We were virtual before virtual was cool. Not only has that totally worked for us, but we have continually enjoyed a competitive advantage thanks to our flexible and responsive high-performance team delivering excellence with every engagement, wherever they and/or our clients are located.”

“Clients started coming to us on a consistent basis due to them ‘seeing us everywhere’ both online, in print and in person,” continued Swift. “We also received steady referrals from strategic partners and happy existing clients. People were drawn to our strong reputation for delivering value for our two niches, independent financial advisors and allied institutions.”

Reaching a 30th anniversary milestone is a noteworthy achievement. Running a healthy small business is no easy feat. According to data from the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics, around 50% of U.S. businesses fail in their first five years, while 65% go under within ten years.

“Our longevity is something I would’ve never dreamed of when I started the company thirty years ago,” explained Swift. “What started off as ‘me, myself, and I’ has become a real business – one that will live on without me. Just like my family and my kids, Impact Communications is a great source of pride and joy for me. In fact, we like to say at Impact Communications, family is more than just bloodlines: it’s the culture we live.”


One of Impact’s mottos is “family first.” The firm finds high quality professionals and gives them the flexibility to care for their family and personal health, the freedom to work from wherever they need to be, some leeway on dress, self-expression, authenticity, and even embrace the occasional use of colorful language. As founder, Swift’s personal mission statement includes the phrase “bright spirits, nurtured, empowered by leadership, love, and commitment.”

The “family first” motto extends to Impact’s family of clients, too. The firm embraces clients with dedicated service, high standards, performance, and results that strive to exceed expectations in services and deliverables. “Over time, clients began treating us like friends and family,” said Swift. “We were more than just a vendor to them. I actually had one long-time client – a CMO at a large financial services firm – get emotional and teary-eyed when she called to say that due to the new parent company’s restructuring plan, that our retainer relationship would be ending after more than six consecutive years.”

Learn more about Swift’s journey in establishing and growing the company via her Best Practices Blog, “What is a successful Business? Reflections from 30 years well spent.”

View the initial anniversary video and clients’ comments via this Vimeo Showcase:

About Impact Communications

Founded in 1993 by Marie Swift, who prior to Impact Communications was Director of Corporate Communications for a nationally-known wealth management firm and regional office for one of the largest independent broker/dealers in the country, Impact Communications works with a select group of fintech companies, financial institutions such as custodians and independent broker/dealers, RIA networks and membership organizations, OSJs, allied consulting entities, wealth management firms and independent advisors. Private coaching, on-camera training, branding and customized websites, content creation, and personalized media strategies enable Impact clients to reach their overarching goals. For more information about Impact Communications, visit