Meet Savannah DeGraaf!

Savannah is the Marketing Director at NAI Wisinski of West Michigan. She lives in Grand Rapids with her husband  and dog,  Maui!  She emphasizes that communication is a crucial piece to being a successful marketing director. 

Tell us a little bit about yourself and your main responsibilities within your role at NAIWWM.

I was born and raised in metro Detroit and ventured over to West Michigan to attend college at Grand Valley State University. After a few years, I fell in love with the area and knew I wanted to stay. I married my college sweetheart last year and we added Maui, our golden retriever, to the family earlier this year. 
In my role at NAI, I manage the projects our marketing department produces. My responsibility is to create and maintain marketing materials with coherent style that reinforces brand recognition. I couldn’t do it without my amazing team! 

What did you study in school and do you see a correlation to where you are now? Did you always see yourself in this sort of role?

Yes, I studied marketing in college, but I didn’t necessarily picture myself in the commercial real estate world. I knew I wanted to be in the business world because I grew up watching my parents succeed in business. I was drawn to marketing because I can use my creative abilities to help promote a business. Marketing is truly the perfect combination! 

What has been your favorite project/development within the marketing department that you’ve gotten to work on?

I’ve worked on so many fun projects over the years, but I’m very proud of the recent updates we made to our team bios on our website. It was a big project and took some time, but I’m so happy with the final product! 

What has been the biggest challenge you have found within the cre marketing industry?

Marketing is fast-paced and always changing, especially with constant technology upgrades. So, being able to navigate and implement new initiatives while still incorporating more traditional marketing can be a bit of a challenge. Some of the “old school” marketing tactics still work, but we also have to move the needle forward and embrace new technologies. I think finding the right balance can be challenging at times. 

What quality do you think is most important for a marketing director to have?

Communication. Whether you’re creating an advertisement or collaborating with your team, communication is extremely important. Making sure everyone is on the same page has always been my number one goal as the marketing director because when you’re on the same page, anything is possible. 

In your opinion, what makes NAIWWM such a special place to work?

I love that each day is different. As the marketing director, I get to work with our agents, property managers, and staff on various projects – it keeps things interesting! We also have a great group of people who look out for each other and are ready to lend help when needed. 

Where can someone find you around Grand Rapids on a day off?

In the summer, you can find me by the beach reading a book or kayaking. In the winter, you can find me walking our golden retriever at one of West Michigan’s beautiful parks or sipping a craft cocktail at Long Road Distillers. 

What is your best advice for college graduates entering today’s workforce?

Network and get a hands-on internship if you can. Most of the tasks I do on a regular day were learned through my internship. Putting yourself out there is also key – you never know who you might run into and what that might lead to.

Click the link below to contact Savannah for your marketing needs! 

Savannah DeGraaf