A Rising Tide: San Diego Design Agencies You Should Know
It’s official. San Diego and Tijuana are now at the epicenter of world-class design. Thanks to many of our finest industry colleagues, our region won the bid for World Design Capital® 2024.
Being a part of this creative community for over two decades, our agency has watched San Diego evolve into the thriving market it is today. We’ve seen small agencies get acquired and watched as independent trailblazers forged their own paths.
We want to give props where props are due. These are the San Diego agencies that should be on your radar. We’re inspired by the work they’re doing to help push our design community forward.
Below are a handful of top design agencies in San Diego:
Experiences For Mankind
Yup, that’s us. We wanted to add a seat to the table for ourselves. The agencies on our list have become professional friends that inspire us, and we continue to find inspiration daily within our own agency. Working with the top brands in the world, we focus on design and strategy. We love bringing our creative consultancy-style to any project to make sure marketing challenges are met from discovery to delivery.
Our friends over at FreshForm are influencing the San Diego community and beyond with a fresh take on design thinking. They’re pioneering a new approach to blending technology and human interaction with Hybrid-Centered Design™ for clients in the automotive, education, and technology sectors.
What started 20 years ago as a two-person team making a splash in the world of advertising has now grown into a fully integrated global marketing agency. Although the headquarters are still where it all began in San Diego, they’ve expanded into new cities with offices in Los Angeles, San Francisco, Denver, and New York.
Red Door Interactive
This agency really knows how to open doors for their clients… Dad jokes aside, Red Door Interactive has been taking names and building brands since the early 2000s. The breadth of their portfolio is impressive — you’ll find everything from educational institutions and consumer packaged goods to real estate and activewear clients on their roster.
MiresBall has been a leading design firm in the San Diego scene for over 30 years. Their long-standing reputation and portfolio showcase a unique style for visual storytelling and building brands that stand out. MiresBall has a knack for attracting talented, kind, and passionate people. We’re fortunate that over the years, a few of them have joined our team at Experiences For Mankind.
Being the Webby Awards’ most recognized independent agency for the past four years is one indication of their team’s impressive abilities. Beyond the accolades, we applaud the culture and leadership that Basic Agency embodies. From their Pledge to fight systemic racism to their thought-provoking podcast BrandBeats, Basic is endorsing a new breed of creativity and inclusion for our community.
Big things are brewing at this small agency. Founded by creatives looking to escape the traditional agency world, their team blends the best of what a nimble team can offer with full-fledged services. From strategy and integrated brand campaigns to UX and product design, Big Day brings big ideas to life.
“Compulsively creative” describes their team to a tee. Traina is an independent agency that’s been oozing creativity in the areas of brand strategy, marketing, and interactive design since 2005. Their team is humble and their work is impressive. Clients include startups and legacy brands in the sectors of technology, healthcare, consumer packaged goods, and more.
“Bold” doesn’t just describe Vitro’s attitude, it encapsulates their work. For more than 20 years, they’ve been running wild with ideas for brands like Asics, Petco, and Adidas to name a few. Store displays with paint dripping out of shoes. Dogs and cats enjoying a fine dining feast. Vitro is a design agency that challenges their clients (and their competition) to think big.
The word Grizzly never felt so approachable — until now. Rounding out our list of creative agencies in San Diego is certainly deserving of a loud shout out. Grizzly is an adventurous hybrid creative agency that specializes in strategy, experience, and activation campaigns for startups and growing brands.
You might be wondering, “Why would any business praise their competition?” That’s a valid question. Sure, advertising is a competitive industry. But experience has taught us that when you play with the best, you only get better.
From rookies to seasoned pros, we’ve been elevating our game and contributing to the design community for over 20 years. Our team can’t wait to see what the city of San Diego champions next. Game on!