The transformation of communication

After 40 years in business, Argyle undertakes a national expansion

It’s a paradox of the digital age that even as technology makes communication easier, it seems to make relationships harder. Truth and trust – the twin enablers of a healthy relationship between an organization and its stakeholders – are often elusive. To succeed, organizations need new mindsets – and communicators need new skillsets.

It’s with these imperatives in mind that Argyle today announces a major national expansion, integrating two premier Western Canadian consultancies onto our team: Context, a national leader in public engagement and public health programming, and ChangeMakers, one of Canada’s leading creative and social marketing firms. We’re excited about working with 40 new colleagues in Vancouver, Victoria, Calgary, Edmonton and Winnipeg, effectively doubling the size of our team.

Argyle has always been driven by a deep sense of purpose and mission. We look for clients who aim to be more accountable, trusted and respected; to become better listeners and leaders; to make better decisions through engagement and collaboration with their publics and stakeholders; to tell authentic stories that reflect their values; and to solve problems that are bigger than any of us.

In these troubled, turbulent times, a smart, strategic communications advisory firm must help clients achieve three fundamental outcomes:

Earning trust and reputation.
At its worst – when practised without ethics – PR can subvert reality, concealing truth rather than revealing it. At a basic level of professionalism, PR seeks to explain reality – bringing discipline to messaging and positioning the organization more favourably in stakeholders’ minds. At its best, however, PR is about improving reality – bringing change to organizations through a deeper connection to the public interest. This is Argyle’s core business: building reputation – one of our clients’ greatest intangible assets.

Making better, smarter decisions that are centred on the needs and interests of their publics and stakeholders.
That is why we must be just as skilled at representing the public to our clients as the other way around. Public engagement has grown to represent some 30 per cent of our business in recent years, as we’ve managed a long list of large-scale consultations on complex public issues. The addition of Vancouver-based Context – the largest public engagement firm in Western Canada – enriches our team immeasurably in this burgeoning field.

Standing out in the crowd.
In a cluttered media environment, citizens and consumers have access to more content than they can ever hope to consume. More than ever, businesses and brands need to differentiate themselves from their peers, deploying content in the service of public relationships. Our new partnership with ChangeMakers – a Winnipeg firm with a deep and talented creative marketing team – strengthens our offering dramatically.

In addition to sharing common values, these businesses have deep roots, resources and relationships in their regions. ChangeMakers has been in business for 21 years. Context was founded 29 years ago. And this year, Argyle celebrates its 40th anniversary.

Does life begin at 40? Perhaps. Because for our team, the transformation of communication is just beginning.

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