Digital Trends Wins Digiday Content Marketing Award for Collaboration With HouseSpecial

PORTLAND, Ore., May 2, 2019 — Digital Trends, the world’s largest independent tech publisher, has been honored with the Digiday Content Marketing Award for Best Agency/Client Collaboration. The award is for last year’s annual Holiday Gift Guide, for which Digital Trends teamed up with animation studio HouseSpecial to tell the story of holiday giving through scenes in playful miniature.

“We’re honored and very proud to receive Digiday’s recognition. We felt like this collaboration was a home run, and we’re thrilled that the world is taking notice. For us, this win acknowledges more than just a project well done,” says Ian Bell, CEO of Digital Trends. “it’s the culmination of a year of tremendous growth that brought us new talent, and new partnerships with some wonderful companies like the geniuses at HouseSpecial.”

For production, HouseSpecial artists used tech products as landscape pieces, coupled with miniature people, trolleys, and ladders. Unexpected household items like clothespins added extra scale, and the result was a series of whimsical scenes themed according to the gift recipients a reader might be shopping for: the traveler, the foodie, the audiophile, parents and grandparents, and they DIY-er. Miniatures were crafted at the traditional model railroad HO scale, or 1:87.

“First and foremost, we are storytellers, so the challenge to create a narrative around each theme was an exciting one! Working in direct collaboration with a client like Digital Trends allows for a special kind of creative relationship. It creates an opportunity where ideas can spark freely,” HouseSpecial Art Director Gee Staughton said. “We are so excited to share this award.”

“Thinking outside the box and creatively using miniature pieces has been our forte for years. This project was especially fun because it challenged us to not only make concise stories with still images but also had the additional caveat that we could only use a very limited palette of elements and colors to create that world,” HouseSpecial Creative Director Kirk Kelley said.

Digital Trends joins a prestigious list of past Digiday Content Marketing Award winners include major brands like Coca Cola, Amazon, and Disney, as well as veteran creative agencies like McCann. Digiday announced their winners today after a month of deliberation over the short list. The full list of award winners is available here.

The awards gala took place Thursday, May 2nd at 6:30pm at Current, an event space in Manhattan’s Chelsea Piers. More info on the Content Marketing Awards is available here.

About Digital Trends

Digital Trends is a leading consumer technology publisher helping people navigate an increasingly digital world. With easy-to-understand product reviews, entertaining news and videos, Digital Trends serves more than 30 million unique visitors each month. Digital Trends reaches more than 100 million tech influencers through their own media network, and its syndicate partners include Yahoo!, Oath, Flipboard, Cheddar, Amazon, FOX News and more than 200 broadcast news stations. Digital Trends is headquartered in Portland, OR with offices in New York City,Los Angeles, Detroit, Toronto and Chicago. For more information, visit

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SOURCE Digital Trends

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About HouseSpecial

Formerly LAIKA/house, the content arm of LAIKA animation studios, HouseSpecial spun off the division in 2014 to continue their 35-year legacy as an independent studio. Their animation has defined brands like M&M’S, Planters, Apple, ESPN, Target and Jose Cuervo. Collaborators include Wieden+Kennedy, Barton F. Graf, Goodby, Silverstein & Partners, TBWA\CHIAT\DAY, Leo Burnett and BBDO. The studio is located in Portland, Oregon and online at and Instagram @housespecialpdx.

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