Last year venture capitalists invested $128.5 billion in 7,872 deals worldwide (according to an article by Bijan Khosravi in Forbes). These people are critical to the success of the technology industry but what makes them tick?
Our latest research has identified over 1,200 US based VCs on Twitter and analysed the people, media and organisations that they follow the most. The results are very revealing and have been published in full in a, free to download, report.
The people that VCs follow the most are … their fellow VCs. The chart below shows the top 15:
The first thing that struck me was the extraordinary numbers of VCs that follow these top 15. Marc Andreessen and Fred Wilson, in particular, are followed by a third of the sample. Remember, no-one is obliged to follow anyone on Twitter, and, therefore, a decision to follow a tweeter is made entirely of the individual’s own volition. So to be followed by a third of your peers is remarkable.
In the report we list out the 200 people, media and organisations most followed by VCs and 60 of them are VCs.
The report also details the media that VCs follow. The stand out leader is TechCrunch which is also the most followed entity followed by VCs on Twitter. It is followed by a staggering 52.9 per cent of VCs. No other news feed comes remotely close: The Wall Street Journal is next on the list with a 25.2 per cent following.
In some cases the journalists have a higher following than the titles they write for. The prime example of this is Dan Primack, Senior Editor at Fortune who writes Term Sheet, a daily news letter about deals and deal-makers.
The chart below shows the top 15 writers followed most by the VCs:
Dan Primack is followed by 16 per cent of the VCs whilst his news feed, Fortune, is followed by just 6.4 per cent. His is a great demonstration of how social media allows us to pin point and access just the information we need. Before social media, writers like Primack weren’t able to engage with their readers in the way they can now. Today he has a valuable personal brand with 63,000 followers on Twitter (and growing), fed by an eagerly anticipated 15 or so tweets per day.
Another example is Re/code which is followed by 11.6 per cent of the VCs in the sample. There are four Re/code writers in this list two of which, Walt Mossberg and Kara Swisher, have higher followings than the title they write for.
A full list of the top 30 writers can be found in our free report.
The report also lists the top 30…
- senior technology executives and entrepreneurs;
- technology, business and general news feeds;
- venture capital and technology firms
…followed by US venture capitalists.
It also takes a look at what they are interested in and even answers ‘seismic’ questions such as …
- Is Hilary Clinton followed by more VCs than Donald Trump?
- Who is more popular, Ashton Kutcher or Oprah Winfrey?
- Which team has more VC followers – San Francisco Giants or the 49ers?
- Which Twitter account has more followers ‘Bored Elon Musk’ or ‘Startup L. Jackson’?
Answers to all the questions on VC influence, both big and small, can be found here.