This week, on the PRmoment oodcast, I interviewed Angie Wiles, founder of The Difference Collective.
Previously, Angie founded Virgo Health with Sarah Matthew in 2003 before selling Virgo to Golin in 2012. Both Sarah and Angie have now left Golin.
Angie is now doing it all again and set up The Difference Collective last year.
Here is a summary of what we discussed:
- Why Angie preferred PR to marketing at uni
- How she blagged a job at the 1988 Seoul Olympics and was on the IOC's press team during the Ben Johnson drug scandal
- How Angie got into healthcare communications
- Why Angie disagrees with my suggestion that healthcare PR is boring
- Angie describes the different elements of healthcare PR, from the prescription side, to over-the-counter, to medical education
- The impact of working in a regulated market for healthcare communications professionals
- The differences in healthcare communications in the UK and the US
- Why the UK leads the world in healthcare communications
- Why working in a regulated market has pushed healthcare communicators to be at the forefront of communications practice
- How healthcare firms are engaging with audiences online, within a regulated market
- Why Angie decided to leave Cohn & Wolfe to set up Virgo with Sarah Matthew (who had previously been at Shire Health)
- How Angie and Sarah setup Virgo despite not knowing each other particularly well beforehand
- Why Virgo Health was so successful so quickly
- Why Angie and Sarah decided to sell Virgo to Golin
- Why procurement was a significant reason for selling the business
- Whether Angie enjoyed working for a holding firm, having been her own boss for so long
- Why Angie felt compromised during her time at Golin
- How Angie coped with being diagnosed with breast cancer during her time at Golin
- In hindsight, does Angie regret selling to Golin?
- Why company owners should not sell just for the money
- Why adversity can often bring out our best moments
- Why Angie wishes she’d left Golin earlier
- Why Angie decided not to set up a wine bar but launch The Difference Collective
- Why Angie believes the structure of modern agencies needs to change
- Why the PR sector needs to find a way to incentivise senior talent to stay in the sector