“Its been a journey. When I was in college, I started off as a Community Assistant at American Campus Communities where I fell in love with the team and culture. When I graduated I was offered an OS position which was exactly what I needed at the time. I was able to travel a lot which I loved but when a Regional Leasing and Marketing Director position opened up I knew it was my next dream job. I had to change my whole life and move to Texas but it was the next career move I had been wanting and praying for for so long. From there, I took a position in Operations and have been in the LA area for the past seven years. It was here that I decided I needed a break from the stressful parts of property management and so I left ACC and moved to Landmark Properties where I am today. Since I was able to try out a couple of positions I now know Leasing and Marketing is where I’m meant to be. It's fun and I don’t have to deal with some of the property details that I didn’t necessarily enjoy. I also love student housing, I feel like it’s my calling and I’m really good at it”
“I get to be creative in student housing and personally, I need that in a job. With student housing there are always fun little challenges such as identifying what's wrong with the property if it's not leasing well. I have to think: is it because there is a brand awareness problem and we need to amp up our marketing or is there a lot of traffic and they're just not converting in which case maybe we need to train people more or adjust pricing. Overall, I can see the big picture of the industry and have worked from the bottom up, allowing me to understand all positions on the totem pole. It's fun, it’s exciting, and it brings me to life every day.”
“Certain things to me seem like common sense because I’ve been doing it for so long. I have to remember that some things are not second nature to a newer, greener manager. With that being said I also have to stay out of the weeds sometimes because when I get to nitty gritty I don’t have time for higher level tasks. That was something I had to learn when I transitioned to the regional position. Obviously I would love to text people and see if they want to lease with us but I could spend all day texting those people instead of doing my job. I had to learn to trust my team to report certain trends to me. With that being said, I still like to take a day every once in a while to put myself on the front line, trying to understand and see trends in leasing myself.”
“When I first saw the demo I thought: this is cool and this is different. It's not like other virtual tours. Most video tours are the same product but this one was an actual person who is an actual employee guiding the viewer. I also think it was done really well in terms of how crisp the final product looks and how the choose your own adventure format is laid out. If there’s just a link on a website somewhere, customers won’t click on it. When you see the widget in the corner with a reward for clicking on it, that’s much more enticing. Going back to the creativity piece I mentioned earlier, I’m always looking for something new and different to set ourselves apart from the competitors. I like being the trendsetter in the market, letting other competitors see what our company is doing and then following because they see it working. LeaseMagnets was one of those trendsetting products”
“Its become increasingly hard to focus on the basics. We have to make sure we’re not just trying crazy marketing tactics and still keeping up with practices that are essential for leasing. With that being said, one cool marketing trend we tried out was AirDrop marketing. We would go to an event such as orientation and airdrop our flyer to students waiting in line. There's also a lot of seasonal trends in student housing that affect our marketing efforts such as housing fairs and renewal season. Recently, people have also begun to bring guests to the apartment so we’ve done a lot with QR codes and offering benefits for guests interested in leasing with us.”
“Ask Questions and talk to as many people as possible. A lot of newer managers are afraid to ask. If they do, I'll answer or help them. At Landmark we have a culture of Radical Candor. It's based on a book and it forces you to have one-on-one sessions where you can ask anyone questions you’ve been putting off. Eventually, you will find the right person who will help you get the answer. Anything is possible when you ask the right person.”
“Sarah Looper Crain was my mentor when I worked at ACC and she's a lifelong friend now. I loved working with her and she is my number one mentor in life. I still talk to her and have her walk me through certain things. We met at an industry conference but it wasn’t until we worked together at the same property that we really bonded. She's so smart and I look up to her as someone to mimic in terms of how she does business. I’ve also tried to be the Sarah for people at Landmark and have always wanted to get on her level."
Thank you Sarah for all you do for the Landmark & LeaseMagnets team!
*pre-leasemagnets stats from real websites
Our results speak for themselves