Intro: Emer Byrne is the expert behind marketing and community engagement at UBC Properties Trust. In this multi-faceted role, Emer manages communication and marketing initiatives such as “Live at UBC” and the launch and marketing of new residential/commercial projects at UBC. In this Membership Spotlight, Emer provides insight into her role, tips and advice she has learnt along the way, and how CREW is playing an active role in her career.
Q: Emer, thank you for being our Member Spotlight! What originally drew you to join CREW? Can you share with us what you have gained since joining?
I joined CREW at the end of last year so most recently, I have been enjoying the membership series events as well as the CREW Network webinars. In the past, I’ve had the pleasure of attending the “Membership Series: A Breakfast with….” which has been a great way to connect with fellow CREW members as well as learn from true industry leaders. The main reason I joined CREW was to meet others that I could have genuine conversations about our careers and the industry.
Q: Starting as a Leasing Coordinator at UBC Properties Trust, what led you to your current roll as Brand Marketing and Community Engagement Manager and what are your favourite aspects of this position?
I believe it was a fortunate mix of timing and experience that brought me to where I am today. I have worked at UBCPT for over seven years. Throughout that time, I’ve had the pleasure of being involved in various aspects of development including design, commercial leasing, land leasing and project management. My contributions to UBCPT naturally progressed into marketing with the development of our new Live at UBC marketing campaign. My favourite aspect of my current role is managing the advancement of our existing brands and ongoing marketing campaigns. A large part of my role involves working with colleagues, designers and consultants. The depth of knowledge and experience that others can bring to a project is so inspiring. Seeing an idea evolve into a marketing campaign, or a design become a unique visitor experience is immensely rewarding.
Q: What advice do you have for young professionals looking to get into a similar role or the real estate sector in general?
Research people in the industry and reach out to those that are in a role you would like to achieve in your career. The worst that can happen is they say ‘no’ so as long as you’re prepared for that you have nothing to lose! My advice to those starting out in any career is to actively listen to others. Engage with others in the industry and ask questions.
Q: Due to the ongoing COVID crisis, our industry has seen a big shift… do you have any tips for staying engaged with clients & colleagues during these times?
I’m back working in our office so staying in touch with colleagues hasn’t been an issue. Prior to the office re-opening our team had regular zoom meetings and I found these were a great way to maintain camaraderie with peers and stay informed on the various projects in development.
Q: UBC is such a unique environment for real estate, are you working on any new projects or initiatives you can announce/share?
Yes! We have been working on a very exciting marketing project called Live at UBC. There has been an amazing team working to get this campaign launched. The main aim of the campaign is to bring awareness to the five residential neighbourhoods on UBC Point Grey campus and life at UBC. It is constantly evolving and is such a desirable place to work, live and visit. I’m excited to share the news that we will be opening the Live at UBC Welcome Centre in October. This new welcome centre focuses on the visitor experience through interactive projection, atmospheric sounds, video and artwork which will give visitors a sense of the depth of the UBC Point Grey campus. We have created a model of the whole UBC campus and surrounding areas which has never been done before. The Live at UBC Welcome Centre is located at 3378 Wesbrook Mall in Wesbrook Village. I look forward to welcoming all that come to visit!
Q: Last question, do you have any good book recommendations?
I have been listening to audiobooks more recently and I have really enjoyed “Made to Stick” by Chip & Dan Heath as well as “The Subtle Art of Not Giving a F**k” by Mark Manson.