Meld’s 2023 Roundup

What has Meld been up to this year? A lot! Here are some of our favorite projects from 2023.

As each year comes to a close, we like to reflect on the projects we’ve completed, clients whose brand strategies we’ve helped enhance, and everything we’ve learned from our work together and with our clients. 

This year we’ve worked with businesses and organizations across industries, including food and beverage, real estate, tourism, venture capital, home remodeling, nonprofits, and more. We’ve refreshed legacy brands, launched new brands, redesigned websites, and everything in between! While it’s been a busy year, the Melders thrived by putting their out-of-the-box creativity to the test.

It’s impossible to choose our favorite project or deliverable from the year. But some of our work from 2023 is especially memorable! Check out what the Meld team had to say.


Melinda Pradarelli, Meld Founder & CEO
Client/Deliverable: Cookies Food Products // Brand Strategy, Audience Research, Consumer Insights, Social Media, E-Commerce

Our new partnership with Cookies Food Products stands out for a few reasons. First, Cookies approached Meld because of our expertise in developing consumer packaged goods and our work in food and beverage marketing. Being able to dive into an iconic brand, understand the story and audiences, and conduct consumer field research is a dream project.

I’ve spent my career building new brands or helping existing brands evolve. This partnership is special because it involves working with an Iowa-based, family-owned and operated company that has already had years of success. I love shaping and facilitating discovery sessions to help pull institutional knowledge from the client, hearing about the opportunities and challenges they face, and better understanding how we can help them connect with their raving fans and potential new audiences. During this discovery, we got to taste their award-winning BBQ sauces and seasonings and tour their pristine plant, where we saw firsthand how they produce, label, and ship products—all from Wall Lake, Iowa. Getting a behind-the-scenes look at one of Iowa’s most successful food businesses is a privilege. 

I look forward to seeing where this partnership goes in 2024. 


Ellen Hallin, Chief Financial Officer
Client/Deliverable: Systems Unlimited // Website Redesign, Technology Evolution

We helped Systems Unlimited with a major website redesign. The process started by infusing new branding and messaging into the entire site. My role was working with the client and our development team to enhance the web tech tools and optimize workflows. As part of this process, we worked with the Systems team to integrate a new talent acquisition software system into their careers page to make hiring and tracking easier. 

I love what their organization does for families in our community—it’s truly remarkable. It was so wonderful to be part of a project that helped Systems get their message across more effectively and powerfully.

systems web before Systems web after


Amanda Tower, Director of Content Strategy
Client/Deliverable: EDC // Website Redesign

With their twentieth anniversary rapidly approaching, EDC reached out to Meld for help refreshing their website. They wanted to make it easier for people to understand EDC’s mission and services, and read stories about the 1,200+ companies EDC has helped grow over the past two decades. 

As the lead content writer and strategist on the project, I worked closely with Nate, Meld’s Senior Graphic Designer, to improve the site navigation and user experience. We wanted to focus on highlighting the economic impact of EDC’s work and emphasize EDC’s role as a growth engine for business and Iowa’s economy. Showcasing the incredible work EDC has done for Iowa-based businesses was the cherry on top. 

The new EDC website tells the story of that impact and makes it clear EDC isn’t just a business growth accelerator for startups, but a valuable partner for companies at all stages of growth. 

The results? In the past 90 days, website users have increased by 23 percent. Of those users, 22 percent have never visited the site!

EDC Website Before EDC Website After


Nate Collins, Senior Graphic Designer
Client/Deliverable: Field to Family // Re-Brand

As Meld’s Senior Graphic Designer, I helped Field to Family redefine its brand strategy and identity. In its fifth year as a nonprofit, Field to Family continues to grow as a regional food hub and market. They came to Meld to refocus on storytelling backed by a brand identity that would scale to meet that growth. 

Field to Family’s refreshed logo showcases the three core areas of the non-profit organization: their partnership with local farmers, their online market and wholesale market, and their mission to expand access and education in the community and schools.

Visual identity drives people’s perception of a brand. Because there are so many parts to what Field to Family contributes to the community, distilling that in one look and feel was a fun challenge. The new brand identity is a simpler brand expression that will be highly recognizable in the community. The color palette is rooted in the life cycle of produce. The green and brown in the logos speak to the Field to Family name. 

The new Field to Family website will showcase compelling photography, with elements like strawberries and other produce, that feels like it’s leaping off the page. Another perk of the redefined brand: The logo and new icon will scale more smoothly in a mobile-first world.

Logo before and afterField to Family website


Samantha Barbato, Content Specialist
Client/Deliverable: Peace Tree Brewing Company // Tailgate Party Giveaway Campaign

For each campaign we did with Peace Tree, we found a way to work in multiple elements: social media, website, and in-store promotions. This campaign was centered on college football and tailgating, so on top of getting out some fun, engaging posts on social, adding a food and beer pairings quiz to the website, and designing in-store signage, we also came up with an idea to drum up excitement for the taproom. With some help from Meld’s Senior Graphic Designer, we created a cootie-catcher (aka Origami fortune teller) with questions about tailgate food and drink combos. When opened, it displayed a QR code that led to the website quiz.

I loved how it combined interactive and nostalgic marketing techniques—two strategies that garner great results and engagement! So nostalgic that when I mocked a draft out on a piece of paper, I found that my muscle memory led me to fold it up accurately.

Overall, the star of the campaign was our pairings quiz on the website. We had over 1,000 quizzes completed (92% of people who started the quiz finished it!) and collected roughly 500 new emails for Peace Tree’s mailing list.

Peace Tree Origami Screenshot 2023 11 02 at 4.14.02 PM


Jami DeVries, Content Specialist
Client/Deliverable: Home Town Restyling // Social Media

As a newer Melder, I’ve had a lot of fun getting to know our clients and developing their content calendars. One of my favorites has been creating the social and blog content for the Home Town Restyling team.

My goal when creating content for our clients is to post things their audiences will find helpful and to spread awareness about the services they offer. Some of my favorite posts are the “This or That” game-day post, the “Pet-Friendly” post, and the “3 Recommendations for Small Bathroom Remodels” blog post

I love creating and planning the content calendars every month and working with the Home Town team on new ways to highlight and showcase the cool work they do. The team is also great to collaborate with because they’re such a fun group.

The posts I mentioned ended up producing some impressive results (that’s likely why they are my favorites!):

  • The “This or That” game-day post had 70 reactions and 56 comments.
  • The “Pet-Friendly” post had 1,801 total engagements, 353 reactions, 28 comments, and 382 clicks back to their website.

Jami HTR post 1 Jami HTR post 2


Adam Lowe, Graphic Designer
Client/Deliverable: Stead Impact Ventures // Website, Website Design

The Stead Impact Ventures and Foundation came to Meld to create a new website to communicate the excitement behind this new organization that is impacting lives worldwide. 

Stead Impact Ventures is focused on changing the course of healthcare with a focus on neurodegenerative disorders, mental health, and obesity. And, the Foundation partners with nonprofits that are making measurable, lasting change through grants to healthcare, education, and faith-based organizations. Jerre Stead and the Stead family are at the heart of this organization and have made giving back a priority throughout their lives. My role on the project was to design a forward-looking website that communicates how they are making transformative investments in healthcare. I used dynamic imagery and motion to tell the visual story. The client needed to present the site to key stakeholders and wanted to see how the site would look with a background video before the site was developed. 

By using Adobe XD and a plugin called Anima, we achieved the desired effect of showing a video on a non-developed site. The motion and many of the images used on the site reinforce the idea of “Bending the Curve,” which means making things better and being the change. Showing video in the design helped the client envision how motion could tell their story.

​​I loved working with the client and my team at Meld to create a website that pushed the limits of what can be shown in a website mockup.


Cheryl Wery, Account Manager
Client/Deliverable: STRATAFOLIO // Discovery Process

The discovery phase sets the foundation for all projects at Meld. During this session, the Meld team meets with the client to learn about their vision, aspirations, and business objectives, along with their pain points and challenges. This open exchange informs the next steps of our work together, ensuring we all have a common understanding as we begin our partnership. These sessions are also a great chance for us to see the client’s passion for their product and build a foundation for collaboration between teams to make the engagement successful.

STRATAFOLIO was one of my first discoveries at Meld. This client came to Meld through our strong partnership with the EDC (Entrepreneurial Development Center). Early next year, we will share the results of our discovery in a report-out and create a plan for executing the work. But the discovery meeting itself was a success! We learned more about this client and what they hope to achieve. Stay tuned to see our work in 2024.


The Melders are looking forward to flexing their creative chops in 2024. Ready to take the next step in your branding and marketing efforts in the new year? Reach out to see how Meld can support your goals!

Share Post