Navigating economic and political headwinds to help drive change
I’ve always had a healthy impatience with the status quo. It’s what drew me to PR in the first place, due to the speed with which a well communicated idea can shift opinions and catalyse change.
When you are facing as many political and economic headwinds as we are today, it can feel like history is shaping us, rather than we are shaping history. But it’s crucial we don’t lose sight of our own individual agency as communicators and our critical role in supporting the agency of our clients.
It’s at difficult times like these that the stories we tell on behalf of change makers and disruptors are needed most. For it’s the momentum and positive glow that we create through our storytelling that provides the optimum environment for innovators to flourish. After all, if we don’t accept this challenge, who will?
As we’ve grown in headcount and capabilities, I’ve witnessed how we’ve become even better at helping clients shape and disseminate their change narratives. Although we’ve never aspired to be a large agency, we’ve always known that we needed to achieve certain scale to help clients realise their full potential across multiple European geographies.
Reaching further: a year of growth and turning points
2022 was our fifth full year of operating and it was a breakout year for us in achieving that desired scale with several notable milestones:
- We surpassed 60 consultants across the UK, France, Germany, Italy, Spain and the Netherlands working as one team through our proprietary PRWithoutBorders™ operating model.
- We grew our senior team to 20 strong at associate director, director and partner level with the addition of notable new joiners in Nick Taylor (Senior Partner, Head of Corporate), former Motorola Solutions communications lead, Liz Mead, and our UK media strategist Sophie Banda. These external appointments have been complemented by growth from within with the promotion of our German colleague Silke Rossman to Senior Partner, Head of Client Operations; our creative planning expert Dave Turnbull to Partner; our savvy comms pros Lavinia Haane and Lauren Armour to Director; German and French media experts Bastian Meger and Morad Salehi to Associate Director; and our brilliant Bulgarian and French PR superstars Lucy Marinova and Shamina Peerboccus to Associate Director. As the appetite for more efficient European outreach grows, it is crucial to have a strong team. I am amazed to see the capabilities we currently have in our team and how some of our senior members have been growing professionally with us almost since our founding. The year of growth as an agency has been reflected in the growth of the team: we had a total of 17 new hires joining Tyto in 2022 and 17 promotions across the team.
- We strengthened our capability across content, digital, SEO and paid media activation with the notable boost of our acquisition of CubanEight. While their existing clients are already reaping the benefits of Tyto’s scale and European footprint, this acquisition also opens the door to a full-service communications offering, strengthening the existing capabilities of the Digital Marketing Hub, our specialist data, insights, design and social unit.
- To help nurture the next generation of change agents, we launched the Tyto Accelerator Programme, an innovative programme designed to accelerate the PR careers of brand new entrants to the PR industry. We are very proud to be supporting the development of our new joiners and it is very satisfying to see the impact they are already having on our work for clients.
- We launched our own proprietary data-powered creative planning tool in the Tyto Relevance Index, to provide Europe’s first monthly view of the conversations dominating the European tech industry landscape. The Tyto Relevance Index reveals the technology and socioeconomic topics that dominate the public discourse of Europe’s technology community.
- We provided £66k of pro bono support to not-for-profit organisations in Reporters Without Borders, Tech Talent Charter and Micro:bit through the Tyto Foundation. Through the Tyto Foundation we commit resources equal to 20% of our annual profit to pro bono projects that seek to promote equality of opportunity, address injustice or support inclusion within the tech, media or communications industries. As our pro bono customer Debbie Forster MBE (CEO of Tech Talent Charter) puts it “Tyto has transformed our communications approach and media results. The team is energetic, determined and enthusiastic and we’ve really reaped the rewards.”
- We launched our sixth annual Tyto Tech 500 to recognise and share lessons from the European tech industry’s most influential thought leaders. The Tech 500 has already established itself as a reference report on the most influential personalities in the technology sector in Europe to the point that many of the influencers echo the report on their channels every year.
- We rolled out across the agency the DISC, a behavioural assessment tool that has helped us build even stronger relationships within the agency and encourage empathy and enhanced communication
We believe in mindful growth rather than growth for growth’s sake. But when you do the right for the future, more often than not, the results follow and 2022 saw us grew our revenues 52% over 2021, which is something we’re really proud of.
What we’re especially pleased by is that we managed to achieve all of this and not lose a single Tyto employee through the whole of 2022 which is something I have never witnessed in all my 23 years of working in PR agencies.
As we start another year, I feel concerned about what lies ahead with the recessionary clouds gathering, but I feel confident that we have never been in stronger shape to support and guide our clients through this challenging environment. And with our unique PRWithoutBorders™ model, we believe we have a model that is both highly efficient and optimised for creating problem solving that the world needs now more than ever. Tyto’s PRWithoutBordersTM model is helping clients to adapt and transform their communications, helping them to be 30% more efficient, more flexible, more integrated and, in the process, more relevant with their creative outputs.