Blogs offer unlimited space and opportunity to showcase your work, but while offering a unique voice in the sea of content is tricky, getting it right offers a bag of rewards
It’s often in the small, coffee-fuelled hours that fingers tap at keys, inspiration is found, opinions are formed and content is captioned. All this builds up to finally hitting the comfortingly familiar Publish Post button and sending something special into the vast blogosphere. But what happens when it gets there? For a brief moment in web history blogs may have been passé, but as the value of a successful and well-run blog is calculated, it’s easy to see they’re much more than a personal ranting space or a way to let off a bit of creative steam. Blogs work hand-in-hand with your online portfolio and presence; you give something to the creative community and, if done well, you get something invaluable in return.
For Adam Wagner at Go Media Inc the rewards are two-fold. On the one hand the Go Media team, a sassy gang of Cleveland-based designers, get to share their experience and have conversations with the online community. On the other hand, by putting out content that gets the senses tingling, they’re pointing the finger right back at themselves. “Nowadays this kind of thing is called Content Marketing,’’ says Wagner, “and what do you know? It does work! It certainly has helped spread the word about what’s going on with all our various endeavours from client work to design tools.” GoMediaZine (www.gomediazine.com) started back in 2006 as a small blog to the creative agency. It soon took on a life of its own and is now a pool of advice and inspiration that’s obviously caught the eye of its followers.
For Daniel Nelson, founder of From up North (www.fromupnorth.com), the beginnings of his blog were more personal. “As a designer I used to save images from the internet of designs that in some way inspired me. I had a special Inspiration folder on my computer where I collected the images into different categories like Print Designs, Web Designs, Typography and so on. Whenever I needed an inspiration boost in a project I always checked my beloved folders.” Coming to the conclusion that if he got a creative kick from this content then perhaps others would too, Nelson took it online. Once the site began growing he found he accidentally stumbled onto the same perks as Wagner. “I know that a lot of people have checked out my portfolio because of the blog and I’ve gotten quite a few job opportunities, even though that never was the purpose behind creating it,” he says.
Read more in issue 91 or Advanced Photoshop, on sale now