The Brand New Conference endeavors to decipher, understand, and inspire brand identities. Over the course of two days, experts and rising stars reviewed thought-provoking case studies on a diverse range of topics – from marketing campaigns for the biggest events in sports, to urban development rebrands and invigorating approaches to social activism. Though each story was unique, they shared a common theme: Inspiration knows no bounds.

As with architecture, brands have the ability to impact people and communities at a deep level. To make such an impact, a brand must be visible, purposeful, flexible, and profoundly understood by consumers.

Brands typically begin as letters on a journey – to provide, to teach, to inspire – and no two journeys are the same. Field of Practice Co-Founder Nermin Moufti addressed the critical crossroads where these letters begin, acknowledging the significance of selecting a name that resonates with both the product and its customer base. August Co-Founder Nadya Okamoto dove into the way in which brand names are empowered by a defined purpose and values, bridging the gap between who the brand is and the benefits it provides. MCKL Type Foundry’s Jeremy Mickel explored how decisions in typography, color, and marks further shape the brand’s identity while providing a consistent, visual nod to its purpose and values across any medium.

Like a serif on a letter, journeys feature dips and turns, successes and failures. “The visual may change, but the soul stays the same,” said NFL’s Maureen Raisch, alluding to the certainty of transition periods in our work and in life. But when built with a strong foundation, brands, buildings, and people will not falter.

A few key takeaways:

  1. Don’t get too attached to your work. The world is constantly evolving, and even the best brands and designs will eventually follow suit or risk being left behind.
  2. Representation matters for creators and consumers. Diverse voices drive innovative ideas. And consumers desire to see themselves within a brand, its products, and its mission.
  3. Create with purpose. Brands shape peoples’ perspectives of who they are, what they stand for, and where they are going. The content we’re putting into the world matters more now than ever before.
  4. People first. Alex Center said it best with “People first. People second. Work third. Success is loving what you do every day and who you do it with.”
  5. Everything is Connected. Look at the disconnected pieces of a brand and begin to connect the dots to create harmony through the stories you discover both past, present, and future.

Two days. Two days filled with stories of success and failure, ideations and insignias, and proof that inspiration can truly come from anywhere. This conference left us feeling refreshed, emboldened, and eager to create something brand new.

About Megan and Olivia

Associate Megan Bilgri brings experience in communications, graphic design, and brand development for numerous consumer and hospitality brands, civic and non-profit organizations, and public figures. She is passionate about creating meaningful content that draws emotional connections between a brand and its audience. A graduate of Mercer University with a Bachelor of Business Administration in Marketing, Megan joined LS3P in 2019 and has since specialized in proactive marketing, including social media management, public relations, and website development in addition to contributing to the firm’s responsive marketing efforts.


Associate Olivia Gray serves as LS3P’s Urban Environments and Workplace Marketing Manager. Olivia brings her extensive background in interactive media, communications, and graphic design to deploy creative and intuitive problem solving to her daily work. In her role, she oversees inbound and outbound marketing efforts across two of LS3P’s Practice Advancement Centers. She leads the charge on client communications, proposals, and project pursuits and helps lead design efforts for unique branding and wayfinding projects.

Olivia earned a Master of Arts in Interactive Media from Elon University and a Bachelor of Arts in Mass Communication with a concentration in Integrated Media from William Peace University. She also completed studies in Sierpe De Osa, Costa Rica, focusing on proactive marketing efforts to help boost the town’s tourism.