The top 20 tech influencers

Leaders of smaller tech organisations are more influential than leaders from multinational companies according to agency Tyto PR in its ranking of the most influential people in UK tech. Not only do 80% of the 500 individuals featured in the Tech 500 power list come from small companies, but there are no FTSE 100 companies in the top 100.

Key findings

  • The most influential individuals in UK tech are becoming more influential year on year
  • Fintech features more prominently than any other sub-sector (19% of the 500 individuals)
  • The gender gap has narrowed from 24% o 31%

Top 20

1.   Chris Skinner – Blogger 
2.   Graham Cluley - Self Employed 
3.   Stephen Kelly - Entrepreneur Investor 
4.   Simon Taylor - 11FS 
5.   Bill Buchanan - Napier University 
6.   Emma Jones - Enterprise Nation 
7.   Mike Butcher - TechCrunch 
8.   Anne Boden - Starling Bank 
9.   Reshma Sohoni - Seedcamp 
10.  Jamie Burke - Outlier Ventures 
11.  Lex Sokolin - Autonomous Research 
12.  Sarah Wood - Unruly 
13.  Russ Shaw - Tech London Advocates 
14.  Jacqueline De Rojas - Tech UK 
15.  Bruce Daisley - Twitter 
16.  Megan Caywood - Starling Bank 
17.  Dr Sue Black - Academic 
18.  Faisal Islam - Sky News 
19.  Sherry Coutu - Founders4Schools 
20.  Matt Hancock – Government

Discussing how the ranking shows that influence is not related to the size of a company, or budgets, Brendon Craigie, co-founder and managing partner of Tyto PR, says: “The fact that major UK tech firms were conspicuous by their absence in list only adds credence to the notion that the right kind of PR is what enables much smaller companies to really punch above their weight.

“Given this is a comprehensive assessment of social, online and offline influence across a range of metrics, it’s especially interesting to note that regardless of how big marketing and public relations budgets are, throwing money at something doesn’t guarantee influence.”

Fintech influence

Looking at how fintech companies are improving their comms efforts, Craigie says: “Rising from the ashes of the financial crisis a decade ago, embattled fintech companies come out on top compared with other sub-sectors in our list. In total, 95 of the 500 individuals featured on the list have a background in fintech; as do three of the top 10.”

Gender gap

Men still dominate in tech comms, although Craigie is pleased the gender gap is smaller: “Thankfully, the gender gap has narrowed a little. However much, much more needs to be done to instil radical change in the gender composition of UK tech.”

Media fail

Craigie concludes that the ranking highlights how you don’t need to be part of a big firm, or in the media, to get an online presence: “The second edition of our proprietary data-driven ranking saw the media knocked off the podium (within the general tech category) as the driving force behind the conversation in the sector. Thinking pragmatically, however, is this really all that surprising given the current political climate? In the last year, the media has been under near constant attack from all sides.

Cheap publicity

“With entire content machines at the disposal of business leaders now the norm rather than the exception, combined with the creation and promotion of content through paid means having become a frequently adopted approach for audience targeting, it has never been cheaper and more time efficient to publish, advertise, and establish oneself online.”


Tyto collaborated with a communications research firm to develop a methodology that encompasses the influence of the individual, their brand, social media presence and of course traditional earned media, as well as public speaking appearances.

If you are interested in influencer marketing why not attend our event, 'The Influence of Influence' on May 16th. Click here for tickets.