Our Creative Director Richie was recently one of the speakers at DIAlogue AM’s breakfast session that explored how to use social media effectively to build a community around a brand. Inspired by this, I thought it might be useful if I shared my favourite go-to blogs that keep me in the know of the latest digital and design trends.
Digital Buzz was founded in 2008 by Aden Hepburn, who is the Managing Director and Creative Director of VML Australia. The blog concentrates on reporting on all things digital, such as digital advertising campaigns, inventive marketing ideas, viral videos and digital trends. The posts consist of illustrative videos and descriptive commentary that give a bit of useful background to the ideas behind the campaign videos.
I discovered Digital Buzz about two years ago when I was searching for inventive online advertising campaigns. Ever since then the blog has been my favourite source for examples in new experimental advertising campaigns that test the boundaries of technology and online space.
The featured campaigns are often quite inspiring and give you an idea of what is possible in the digital realm at the moment. By going back to the archives you can also see what kind of progress there has been in digital advertising in the last years and even make some predictions where digital advertising is headed in the near future. For some reason, it seems that car companies are currently leading the way when it comes to experimenting with inventive digital advertising.
Geekologie, according to the blogger himself, is “dedicated to scientific study of gadgets, gizmos, and awesome”, which in practise means that the blog post topics range from everything and anything between ultra-geeky futuristic gadgets to the latest baffling specimen of odd online phenomena.
The readers submit most of the blog post ideas and the blogger then selects the ones that happen to strike his fancy, with a significant portion of these ideas for some reason being robot apocalypse-related.
What makes Geekologie different from other similar blogs is not really the blogger’s sense of impending robot-doom, but his writing style that tends to drift off to another, more personal, world after the first few sentences. Where else could you find someone writing about the comic book writer Stan Lee’s new cologne and someone hiding boogers in moustaches, all in one post?
Although the blog boasts itself as being ultra-geeky, don’t let it deter you. Only one of the six topic categories truly fits the bill; videos, scary, fail, cute, sexy and, you guessed it, Star Wars. Be it then because of the geek-appeal or the eccentric writing style, this is the blog I have stayed true to the longest.
Geekologie offers the most variety in topics out of the blogs I have listed here, similarly with the commentary, you can never be too sure what makes the cut and gets featured on the blog. So for a comprehensive overview of what is going in the land of digital and random geeky stuff, I would be so bold as to claim that Geekologie is the blog to follow.
If It’s Hip, It’s Here
Started in 2006, If It’s Hip It’s Here concentrates on showcasing the latest in product innovation. The blog states that it keeps people “up to date with the latest and greatest fine art, design, products and fashion”, but lately the blog’s focus has been mostly on writing about innovative products and packaging.
The blog has been a fairly recent discovery for me, but has already turned out to be valuable whenever I want to read about something that hasn’t been written about anywhere else.
Indeed, the most important reason I like this blog so much is that the blogger doesn’t go with the general flow of the Internet and features ideas purely because they appeal to her, not because they are popular at the moment. This makes the posts slightly random, but also very interesting.
My Modern Metropolis
Receiving about 2 million visitors each month, My Modern Met is the artiest blog out of the ones introduced here. It is aimed at art enthusiasts and trendspotters, and therefore it comes as no surprise that My Modern Met has a certain distinct affinity with projects that please the eye; be it photography, design or art.
This is one of the blogs I follow every day. The affinity towards this blog stems for their attractive blend of beautiful visuals and their well-thought, in-depth analyses of each featured project. It is clearly visible that the bloggers dedicate more time on writing up the blog posts than the average blogger.
It seems that My Modern Met has a certain distaste towards overly commercial projects, which means that lesser known independent artists and designers have a better chance at gaining exposure in this blog. Perhaps that is also why the blog manages to feature the most interesting contemporary art and design out there.
So far there hasn’t been a day when there wouldn’t have been something interesting on My Modern Met. The blog has kept me in its grasp with its unique content and outstanding commentary.
Although UFunk started its blogging life already in 2009, I wasn’t familiar with the blog until six months ago. The writer resides in Paris, France, but UFunk can be read English as well. However, even without the Anglo-version, following the blog wouldn’t be a problem as it’s very image-heavy.
Along with My Modern Met, UFunk is one of the most dependable sources for fresh good stuff in art and design. However, the style is a bit more urban than Modern Met’s, with the topics ranging from fine art to new gadgets. When it comes to recurring themes, Superheroes and pop culture seem to be UFunk’s most beloved topics.
Particularly noteworthy are the blog posts titled ‘Weekend Selection’, which feature very random but entertaining images found all over the Internet. These posts are my personal favourite, as the 30+ odd photos often tend to be rather entertaining. Perfect Pinterest material!
Web Design Ledger
Web Design Ledger is a web design centric blog enamoured with lists. The ‘About’ section of the blog states unambiguously that WDL “is a publication written by web designers for web designers.” The blog has certainly taken it to heart to help out web designers and the blog is indeed a great resource for web design inspiration and knowledge.
Although I’m not a huge fan of numbered lists due to traumatising overexposure, I must confess that in WDL’s case they actually work. The WDL bloggers scan the online space for inspiring new websites and simply collect great-looking websites sharing a common visual theme together to form handy and inspiring lists.
The lists are understandable, very focused on images and present only a short paragraph of introductory text in the actual post. This makes it very easy to skim through the collection and get inspired by the extraordinary designs. Also, it’s always good to see what other people are up to, and perhaps even getting an idea of what the next big thing in the field could be.
If you are interested in taking a look at the complete list of design and digital marketing blogs we like and follow for inspiration and ideas, head over to our Netvibes dashboard.