Bill & Peggy’s Excellent Social Adventure

Bill & Peggy’s Excellent Social Adventure

This is a combo post written by Bill Szczytko and Peggy Hale:

We weren’t fortunate enough to travel to Boston for NAA this year. Honestly, watching our Facebook friends post status updates about their travel and arrival at Logan Airport, photos from hotel room windows with great views (like Israel Carunungan’s)

Israel Carunungan’s room with a view.

and not so great views (sorry Kim Adams!)

Kim Adams shows off her NAA hotel view

was heart wrenching. We saw pictures of old friends at Fenway Park, The Beach Boys Concert, Cheers, The Boston Harbor, tons of lobster dinners, in the educational sessions and networking on the awesome EXPO floor.

The floor from the 2012 NAA Conference and Exposition

We even saw #NAAEduConf actually trend on Twitter on the opening day! Very cool.

As we sweated out another hot summer week in the Mid-Atlantic, we did what all multifamily technology nerds would do who couldn’t attend… we watched the events on social media! Here’s what were able to learn through social media in the comfort of our air-conditioned offices:

  • The parent company of Apartmentratings.com acquired Satisfacts research for Doug Miller’s birthday.
  • In addition to their zany photo booth, Leasehawk talked about their awesome new smart phone application to manage prospects and other communications.
  • The Apartmentguide was thinking WAY big with a new social media manager program.
  • Tom Brokaw urged us all to be more socially responsible “Join arms, citizens; welcome home our military families. Embrace them. Heal our Great Americans.” He also urged us not to focus all our social efforts online: “No tweet will ever replace your 1st kiss, your 1st whispered “I love you”. Use tech wisely . . .reach out & really touch.”
  • Tamela Coval reported the following quotes: “The vision of a Champion is One drenched in sweat, bending over & gasping for breath when no one else is watching” ~ Mia Hamm. “Let’s grow up to be ‘Life Is Good’s’ Jake. We’re doin’ what we like, we’re likin’ what we do. ~Bert Jacobs
  • Stephanie Helling shared this great quote: “You get to pick your defining moment.” -Nomar Garciaparra
  • NAA Education Institute shared this great stat: “1 in 5 mobile web visits leads to an immediate call to the business”.
  • Charity Hisle reported that Lisa Trosien urged consumers want things that will make their lives easier. Not all about “engagement”.
  • Mike Whaling reported that of all review sites, Yelp was trusted the most by the respondents in the J Turner study.
  • Sara Graham attended “Put Your Best Facebook Forward”: Research suggests posting at 7am, 11am, 3pm, 5pm, and 11pm. Frequency is key, but don’t overwhelm your fans.
  • Paula Blum Crawford attended the Mobile Session and shared fun stats: 39% people use phone in bathroom, mobile and desktop usage complement each other, tablet/mobile usage higher nights and weekends when away from desktop, 1 in 5 mobile web visits leads to an immediate call to the business and the panel urged to measure everything when designing mobile site, make it easy for residents to interact.
  • Maintenance Mania achieved a New Record! Over 900 spectators were present at the Maintenance Mania championship! Jose Torreblanca won for the second time in a row!
NAA_Education_Conference
We THINK this is Tom Brokaw speaking at NAA – we’re not 100% sure as we weren’t there.

We didn’t get a massage, win any iPads, cash or even collectable swag. While our feet didn’t hurt and we didn’t stay up past our bedtimes, we have both concluded that nothing beats being there in person. We missed the full content of the sessions, interacting directly with our vendor partners and sharing thoughts and ideas in more than just 140 key strokes. So while we enjoyed our social adventure, we will follow Tom Brokaw’s advice to reach out and really touch… so next year you will see both of us in San Diego!

What were your big takeaways? We’d love to get comments from those of you who were there!

  • Israel Carunungan

    To me, the reason to attend NAA is the networking. Everyone you need to meet will be there. I came in with a list of people to meet and product demos to see — that would’ve been a dozen different meeting days if not for NAA. The educational content was an added bonus, it was actually pretty strong this year. And it’s not everyday you get to see and hear Tom Brokaw, Nomar Garciaparra and Mia Hamm speak.

    Boston is a wonderful city, and I’m happy that NAA finally made it to the Northeast. Seeing old friends and meeting new ones are always a treat. The only comment I would make is that I wish NAA would discontinue extending the conference into Saturday. Why not have it Wednesday-Friday so it doesn’t cut into people’s personal weekend time?

    All in all a great conference. San Diego is an amazing location and looking forward to seeing my friends in sunny SoCal again next year!

  • Sean Organ

    This was my first year attending NAA and I thought that the experience was great. The educational content was very good. I particularly enjoyed Chris Lawrence of Pegasus Residential and Andrew Botieri of Apartment Finder. Tom Brokaw left you inspired to return to your team and reenergize them, to help them realize the impact that they can have each day on their teams, their residents and their communities. Dan Thurmon’s message that in order to achieve greater success you have to let go at times and take chances resonated with the room.

    I was also incredibly impressed with how rapidly technology is transforming our industry. Visiting the many vendors you quickly see how they are developing their products, systems and software to make us more productive and efficient. Our best days are clearly in front of us.

    It was a great experience and I hope to return next year in San Diego.