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Austin, TX (November 15, 2015) – Austin, Texas-based marketing firm Catalyst has been awarded the opportunity to speak on brand magnetism and how to create powerful brands in student housing at the 2016 NAA Student Housing Conference & Exposition.

The 2016 conference will be held in February in Chicago and connects nearly 1,000 student housing industry leaders. The conference and exposition includes sessions on Gen Y and Gen Z, How to Rock the Online Reputation Race, The Seven Deadly Sins of Email, and more.

Catalyst will be teaming up with leaders from Campus Advantage to present on branding and the five steps to creating a powerful brand. Jamie Matuesk, Vice President of Catalyst, Christy McFerren, Creative Director of Catalyst, Katy Smerko, Vice President of Leasing at Campus Advantage, and Madison Meier, Director of Business Development at Campus Advantage will walk through a real-time discovery questionnaire and explain how properties can put it into action right away when branding student housing projects.

Catalyst has performed a number of very successful rebrands for student housing properties, including The Marq, which has won multiple awards for the marketing effectiveness of their brand’s roll out. The 612-bed student housing property in Milwaukee, Wis., serves students primarily attending Marquette University and won gold at the 2015 Communicator Awards, as well as silver at the Internet Advertising Competition, the W3 Awards, and the Davey Awards.

“The term branding evokes a myriad of thoughts, definitions, and feelings, and everyday we see great brands that promote customer engagement and national appeal” says Matusek. “This speaking opportunity will allow our team to share insights and key parts of our process that have lead to the creation of lasting brands within the student housing industry.”

Matusek and McFerren will be discussing how the branding process involves more than just a logo and a color palette, but rather starts with a unique name and comes to life with a feeling the brand evokes. Additionally, they will be focusing on three categories — new developments, acquisitions, and a portfolio refresh. They will be giving pointed examples with work they’ve completed recently including the branding of a new development The Knox in Knoxville, Tennessee, the acquisition of The Republic at Sam Houston in Huntsville, Texas, and the rebrand and refresh of The Marq in Milwaukee, Wisconsin.

“When we take on branding projects, we employ a five-step process,” McFerren says. “We want to be sure every brand we develop is given the opportunity to communicate its own magnetism — that unspoken authority that trusted brands express by nature.”

Catalyst will be speaking on brand magnetism on Wednesday, February 17 from 10:45-11:45 a.m. at the Hyatt Regency in Chicago, Illinois.


About Catalyst

Catalyst is the leader in student housing marketing and serves industries including commercial real estate, multi-family housing, finance, universities, senior housing, development firms, and others. The firm concentrates on the science of marketing by using data-driven strategies to generate tangible results for clients that grow their business. The Austin-based firm offers a wide range of marketing strategy, design, and public relations services.