Tyto’s innovative ‘PR without borders’ approach was backed with a clear impact on quality results for clients, and also evidenced effective delivery against the business plan. The agency has already won and retained a slew of clients that more established agencies would covet. Their commitment to continuous professional development is impressive for such a new agency, particularly given that the business structure makes delivering this commitment more challenging than within a traditional agency model.

Finalists:

  • Aubergine
  • Don’t Cry Wolf
  • Higginson Strategy

Winner entry:

Number of employees – including executive / support staff – and annual fee income:

Tyto comprises of 11 core employees. Brendon Craigie is Co-Founder and Managing Partner. Ellen Raphael is Co-Founder and Head of Insights. Tyto has four practice heads leading client programmes across FinTech, MadTech, Corporate, and Content, plus three senior consultants and two consultants.

From launch, Tyto’s aim has been to deliver a ‘PR Without Borders’ experience across Europe, which means integrated multi-country and multi-disciplinary capability. Tyto has an extended team of 20 employees, consultants and ‘Tyticians’ (freelance specialists) spanning the UK, France, Germany, Spain, Italy and the Netherlands.

Tyto launched in October 2017. The agency’s fee income for the past 12 months (1 March 2018 to 28 February 2019) broke the £1m mark.

Business objectives and analysis of performance against budget since incorporation, including date of incorporation:

Launched in October 2017, Tyto’s goals are to:

  1. Deliver a new, improved agency experience to clients and employees
  2. Build a pan-European business of 30 employees and £3m in revenues in four years.

Supporting objectives include:

  • Break down the silos embedded in the agency model to deliver a truly integrated multi-disciplinary pan-European capability and client experience
  • Deliver a perfect partnership to all our stakeholders: clients, employees, key opinion formers, suppliers and journalists
  • Enable location-agnostic remote working so employees can prioritise careers and personal lives, allowing Tyto to recruit great talent anywhere
  • Develop a new roundtable account structure that’s flexible and better for integrated campaigns
  • Make employees partners in the project with all staff given shares in the company and everyone benefiting from a unique quarterly bonus scheme linked to revenues
  • Develop a holistic way to measure influence, through the Tyto Tech 500 Power List, an objective ranking of technology influencers based on a combination of offline and online metrics
  • Develop a new creativity model to replace brainstorms; Tyto uses ‘creative sprints’, a process to develop and test ideas, based on the latest Silicon Valley thinking.

A brief overview of business / team strategy:

Tyto’s business strategy has been to build a pan-European multidisciplinary team that works as one unit across borders, freed from the cultural and operational barriers that offices and separate comms divisions create. This is Tyto’s operating model, ‘PR Without Borders’. Tyto developed this approach based upon feedback from over 200 business executives and senior communications professionals. From a specialisation perspective, Tyto is focused on the colliding worlds of science, technology and innovation.

For Tyto, borders are both visible (i.e. where people sit) and invisible (the borders that often occur between communications disciplines). Tyto’s approach removes these borders meaning teams can be built around clients in a bespoke approach that benefits the goals they aim to achieve.

To deliver on its vision Tyto needed a different philosophy to staffing the business that meant employees do not all have to work from one office. Tyto adopted a location agnostic model for staffing the business that has allowed it to develop a winning culture, even when its employees don’t all sit together.

With Tyto’s location agnostic model, employees can work from where they choose. This can be from their home offices, co-working spaces, client offices, or a combination of these locations.

Tyto made several investments to ensure this approach works professionally and the company’s culture and way of working became enshrined. These included:

  • The Tyto technology stack – the best tech to enable remote working, including Zoom video calls, Slack messaging, and CircleLoop call management
  • Hosting four ‘hack weeks’ – week-long work and team building sessions, each in Valencia, Spain, with a fifth planned this summer for Lisbon, Portugal
  • Invested £15k in external management and client service training to lay down a solid foundation for the whole team.

A summary of commitment to CPD and professionalism:

In addition to fortnightly internal training hours, in which a variety of topics are covered by subject experts from within the team, Tyto has invested over £15k in external management and client service training to lay down a solid foundation for the whole team. This includes:

  • Two day-long training sessions on creativity with Gabriela Lungu, Founder of WINGS Creative Leadership Lab
  • Two day-long training sessions on leadership and client service with Lorraine Bevan, Partner at Bevan Young Associates
  • One day-long training session on writing with Mick Hume, a freelance journalist and author who regularly writes for The Sun, The Times, and The Sunday Times.

A summary of recent outstanding achievements, including client list growth / retention:

Recent achievements include:

  • Profitable and with £1m+ in revenues in the past 12 months, after only 15 months of operating
  • Through its remote model, Tyto has saved its 11 employees from 7,755 commuting hours per year based on the team’s previous average three-hour daily commutes (that is 323 24-hour days or nearly the full year of a person’s life)
  • 16 clients (10 retained, 6 project-based)
  • Launched the Tyto Tech 500 Power List influencer ranking in 2017 and 2018, generating 16,000 site visits, 200 downloads, 80 MQLs, 2 new clients and over £300,000 revenue
  • Helped pro-bono client #techmums win BIMA Advance Award for Diversity and Inclusion
  • Launched the ‘Tyto IoT Hype Report’ which generated over 700,000 impressions, 4,500 engagements, and 3,000 site visits
  • Team members are regular industry commentators, speak at events including; London Tech Week, Health Tech & You, and delineate workshops, and have been seen in PR Week, VICE News, City AM, PR Moment, and HR Magazine.