Data-driven PR is an exciting new world

We’ve just launched our Tyto Relevance Index, a new data-powered insights service enabling us to understand the most hotly debated global themes and trends impacting the European tech community.  

It couldn’t exist without the Tyto Tech 500 Power Lists – a separate project that has now entered its sixth year. It’s our proprietary ranking of the most influential individuals working in technology from across the UK, France and Germany. 

The Tyto Relevance Index will monitor 30 technology and socio-economic topics in parallel, based on the public social media posts from almost two thousand UK, France and Germany influencers in the Tyto Tech 500 Power List community. This will give us valuable data that gets richer over time, with month-by-month comparisons, eventually yearly comparisons, and will help to predict future trends too. The new service forms part of Tyto’s strategy to leverage innovative data analysis to help our clients make more informed decisions about their communications strategies. It has been developed by Tyto Labs, which is focused on exploring new technologies, channels, services and methodologies to enhance the way Tyto operates and the services it offers. 

We plan on sharing thematic-level data with Tyto clients and subscribers monthly, but we can also dig a little deeper behind the scenes to get a better understanding of what exactly is being discussed, what’s driving it, and why. 

And this is where things get really interesting.  

Any successful communications strategy or campaign needs to understand its target audiences. As PR professionals we pride ourselves on our industry and media knowledge but – as seasoned technology PRs – we also understand how data can augment our expertise, help fine-tune communications plans, and give an additional spark to our creative processes. Ultimately, this will all lead to an even better service for our clients.  

Our clients’ customers and the media are the two key external audiences for PR planning. The Tyto Relevance Index provides us with an additional way of tapping into them and to better understand them. There are founders, CEOs, CTOs, scientists and academics alongside world-class media commentators and analysts from various sectors in our data sample, among many more. And this sample will expand as new influencers emerge and are added in future. 

So, what can we learn under the hood of the first Tyto Relevance Index? 

The trends will come over time of course, but we ran the algorithm over the previous months to give us a running start. In other words, we cheated, but in good way. The Tyto Relevance Index allows us to see the global themes and trends at both a pan-European and country level. As my German and French is appalling, this blog will be a very UK-flavoured take. 

Cybersecurity was the biggest technology topic in the UK in September, and we can see a number of spikes in the social media posts throughout the period. It was a turbulent month with a number of incidents, most notably the well-publicised Uber incident, where large volumes of employee communications were stolen. Other themes included the importance of cybersecurity in the C-suite, with the CEO and the CFO both being called out as needing to play a crucial role; and various debates around the role of cyber as an increasingly important frontier in the invasion of Ukraine. 

But, what strikes me, is that these three peaks are enormous, and the specific focus was varied. Each increases a little from the last. It suggests that cybersecurity is growing as a priority – it’s getting onto the top table and it’s not going away anytime soon. 

Meanwhile, climate change was the leading socio-economic topic in September. When reviewing the data, it is fascinating to see the extreme peaks and troughs in the social media posts throughout the month – each time higher than the last at almost weekly intervals. When you look at the news agenda driving this social media interest, it was largely spurred by discussions within UK politics around the global energy crisis as well as the tragic floods in Pakistan. 

One rationale for monitoring technology and socio-economic trends in parallel is due to our core belief that PR and marketing is stronger when you take a multidimensional view. The prevalence of discussions around climate change will inevitably have increasing impact on the technology landscape and every brand will need to consider this landscape carefully. 

This is just a brief snapshot of the insights we’re able to generate using the combination of our Tyto Relevance Index and the Tyto 500 Power List that is behind it. It’s already sparked some interesting conversations among the team around how we can apply these and other insights into our current PR programmes, and is proving a valuable – and unique – tool to have at our disposal.  

Once we build up the dataset over the coming months, we’ll share some other insights that we believe are important to think about too, but I believe this is great food for thought for any professional that wants to create smart PR and marketing campaigns which are grounded in local market insight. If you are interested in receiving the Tyto Relevance Index data each month, don’t forget to subscribe via the contact form on the website.