NZ to Chicago: Insights from the Brand New Conference 2023

NZ to Chicago: Insights from the Brand New Conference 2023

We had the privilege of attending the twelfth edition of the Brand New Conference in Chicago, IL. Taking the red-eye flight from New Zealand was well worth it for this two-day event!

The event brought together some of the best international design brains in the industry. While our insights may have taken their time to reach you (a modest eight months later), we are excited to finally share the lessons and inspirations that we took away from this deep dish pizza-themed conference.

Here are our hot takes from the event:

1. Fuelling curiosity and inspiration

At Kindred, our passion for curiosity and inspiration knows no bounds. Travelling from one corner of the globe to another not only expanded our horizons but also fuelled our creative energies. The eclectic mix of cultures and ideas we encountered in Chicago created a great backdrop for a truly inspiring design event.

2. The Power of Human Connection
Throughout the event, we found ourselves surrounded by a diverse community of branding professionals, all eager to share their experiences and insights. Engaging in meaningful conversations and exchanging ideas reminded us of the importance of connecting with likeminded design brains.

3. Embracing Innovation and Growth
We had the privilege of hearing from industry leaders who shared their success stories and the innovative tactics they employed to propel their brands forward. Learning about the latest trends, technologies, and techniques allowed us to deepen our understanding of how to stay ahead and best serve our clients in the ever-evolving design landscape. 

4. Authenticity Is Key
Throughout the Brand New Conference 2023, one resounding message echoed across the stages: authenticity is the key to building remarkable brands. The power of telling an authentic story that resonates with your audience cannot be overstated. We were reminded that in a world saturated with brands, it is the ones who dare to be genuine and vulnerable that truly capture our hearts and minds.

5. The Power of PR
The conference demonstrated that PR can be an incredible tool for building a brand's reputation and increasing its visibility. Whether it's through media coverage, influencer partnerships, or networking events, a well-planned PR strategy can make all the difference in establishing recognition and credibility.

6. Be Bold and Embrace a Digital-First Mindset
This digital-first mindset invites brands to be bold, to fearlessly explore new horizons, and to continuously refine their digital presence in an ever-changing world. In the digital realm, the ability to try, to learn, and to refine is not just encouraged but celebrated as a stepping stone towards innovation and success.

Key Takeaways from the Speakers:

"Brands are memes. Both are ideas that spread from person to person within a competitive environment, adapting and changing as they do so" - Danny Pemberton from Love and Money

“You have the most fun and make the best work with people you like on projects and you care about" - Katrina Romulo

"You have to have that empty space to allow the creativity to emerge, there needs to be a sense of questioning and wonder and openness and that’s very core to who we are and how we work. It’s also about not having all the answers. We try to use curiosity as our driving tool with working with clients" - Emunah Winer & Margaret Kerr-Jarrett from Nihilo


Visting Chicago?

Here are our personal highlights that we enjoyed in between conference sessions:

Tzuco - A menu rich with experimental Mexican dishes, you'll be treated to fabulous food and a warm atmosphere. Located in the heart of River North.

The Robey Hotel - Located in Wicker Park, this rooftop bar offers stunning views and a relaxing poolside experience for guests and day pass visitors.

Club Lucky - Nestled in Wicker Park, it's an authentic Italian diner that's perfect for a fun night out. 

Chicago's First Lady Architecture Boat Cruise
- A must-do experience to marvel at Chicago's iconic historic and contemporary 
architecture from the water.

The London House Rooftop Bar - Fancy a delicious cocktail in the heart of the city?Treat yourself to the breathtaking views and a chic atmosphere at this rooftop bar.

Wrigley Field Baseball Game - Immerse yourself in the electric atmosphere of a baseball game at Wrigley Field, and experience the passion of Chicago's sports culture.


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May 20, 20240 commentsJanelle Mais