InkHouse: The Agency for Change-Makers

Aug 07, 2019 Beth Monaghan

Every time I meet with a prospective client, I ready myself to answer this question: what makes InkHouse special? The answer has evolved over time, but it tracks our heritage: InkHouse is an integrated PR agency for innovative thinkers, creators and leaders who believe in the power of stories to effect positive change.

We believe that stories have the power to shift perspectives and inspire action, and we want to work with organizations trying to make positive change happen in their worlds. Let me tell you about a few InkHouse clients who are doing just that: 

  • Sir Tim Berners-Lee invented the web in 1989 and today his company inrupt is working to re-invent the web so that it works for everyone, as Tim originally envisioned. 
  • Organic Valley eschewed traditional business models and brought the cooperative model to small farms in order to take organic farming nationwide. Today, it’s a billion-dollar cooperative. 
  • Molekule is on a mission to solve the global air pollution crisis by reimagining the future of clean air.
  • The Massachusetts College of Art and Design has a president who believes that while we’ve all been taught how to earn a good living, we should be taught how to live good lives. He’s running one of the first independent, public colleges of art and design in the country and is dedicated to making this kind of creative education accessible to students with diverse backgrounds, enabling them to participate in the creative economy. 
  • Hired is shining a light on gender and diversity pay inequalities.
  • The Saul Zaentz Early Education Initiative at the Harvard Graduate School of Education is working to improve quality to early education for our nation’s youngest learners.  
  • Okta is reinventing the way organizations manage identity, putting trust at the forefront.
  • Eaze is working to change societal stigmas and social injustice as it relates to cannabis.
  • And our pro bono client, the ERA Coalition, is doing the hard work of passing the Equal Rights Amendment, because it is ABOUT TIME.

We believe that what worked yesterday won’t work tomorrow. While we work with clients who make change happen, we’re also committed to it in PR. Back in 2007, when we were first founded, lots of other agencies were creating social media departments. We thought media relations and social media should be integrated. Then we expanded into content and now we’re offering fully integrated digital programs. Because even though media relations is still the best way to build credibility, on its own it’s not enough to build awareness. 

We believe that what’s good for our people is good for our business. In my experience, a fulfilling personal life is the fastest route to a meaningful professional one. So we decided that productivity wasn’t about how much time we sit in our chairs, but about the kinds of ideas that create results. We went unlimited on vacation, banned email from 7 p.m. to 7 a.m., and we decided that everyone should work from home on Fridays, because, well, everyone needs to find some space to think so we can get some writing done. 

We believe that creativity, growth and progress are contingent on inclusivity. In an industry that is roughly 70 percent female, we should do something about the pay gap and the leadership gap between women and men. If PR can’t do it, which industry can? We’ve fought for and helped pass equal pay and paid leave laws in our headquarters state of Massachusetts. Now we’re tackling the inclusion and diversity problem because how will we get the best ideas if we’re all coming from the same perspectives? We have a long way to go (as does the PR industry overall), but we’re committed to doing it. 

We believe in the process. We’re motivated by change and we can’t think of any better challenge than translating a complex idea into an accessible story that can move innovations and culture forward. To make that change happen, we have to be open -- to ideas, people, and practices. We have to let go of our own preconceived notions, which is what our InkHouse swirl has evolved to evoke. 

So why work with InkHouse? We believe in the power of authenticity, creativity and hard work. If you’re got a big idea for meaningful change, we’ll get it to the people who matter wherever they are -- in the media, in the real world, and all over the digital one. 

Topics: Agency, InkHouse Values, 2019, Community, Clients, Change-makers
Beth Monaghan

Since the early days working around her kitchen table, Beth has grown Inkhouse into one of the top independent PR agencies in the country. She’s been named a Top Woman in PR by PR News, a Top 25 Innovator by PRovoke, and an Ernst & Young Entrepreneur of the Year finalist. Beth designed Inkhouse’s signature Storytelling Workshop to mirror the literary hero’s journey and to unearth the emotional connections that bind an audience to a brand or idea. She also uses narratives to build Inkhouse’s culture, most recently through two books of employee essays, “Hindsight 2020” and “Aren’t We Lucky?”

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