Social Impact

For more than three decades SDI has been on the cutting edge of developing and executing scalable communications programs, helping businesses, organizations and governments create positive and significant impact in the world.

We’ve helped clients address societal issues, share their knowledge and resources, build partnerships and support great causes.  We’ve helped government agencies and nonprofits address health concerns and environmental cleanups. And we’ve helped corporations support funding for girls education, provide resources for military caregivers and facilitate employment opportunities for veterans.


  • Strategic counsel on corporate social responsibility and philanthropy
  • Impact analysis
  • Creative partnerships
  • Media campaigns and special events


Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services

SDI was retained by the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS) to help develop an agency wide prevention message for all outreach and education efforts.  Using SDI’s COMSEM based analytical process, the firm worked with all of the departments and regions of CMS to identify issues, audiences, messages and a strategy to reach 65 million Americans.

This new strategy was being developed as CMS was switching from a disease management model to a prevention model. Several issues arose from that change in emphasis:

  • Entities whose business models were built on the disease management basis could be actively obstructionist or simply unwilling to fully support the new CMS initiative;
  • Change is often perceived as threatening, particularly to older people who are accustomed to routine;
  • An enormous number of Americans did not have any health insurance, making them much more difficult to reach through existing health channels.

These communication problems were made greater by the fact that the population served by CMS is diverse, fragmented, and presented both socio-economic and linguistic challenges. These audiences presented formidable communication challenges including cultural or spiritual differences, language barriers, ignorance of good health practices, and concerns about confidentiality or discrimination. Many audience members were not connected with primary care providers, medical specialists, or other health care professionals.

Fast Facts

  • Many target audiences had to be reached through intermediaries, some of whom in turn had to be educated, convinced, and motivated.
  •  SDI guided CMS in the enlistment of other parts of the federal government that had shared interests and constituencies, state and local governments, and broad based representative organizations focused on health or on seniors.

We worked with The Provider Communications Group’s (PCG)  to ensure that physicians and other health care professionals were provided with educational materials to inform them about the new preventive services and help them communicate the availability of these new services to Medicare beneficiaries.

And, we worked with the Contractor Management Group to inform Medicare contractors who in turn were responsible for provider education and training.