Title: Graphic Designer & Marketing Advisor
Hometown: The West Side of Cincinnati, OH
Current home: Northside, Cincinnati, OH
Proudest career accomplishment: Designed a winning campaign for LeadingRE- Interactive Media in 2020
Favorite local hangouts: Northside Yacht Club, Flamingo Haven Antique Mall
As part of the creative engine that fuels the Sibcy Cline brand, Courtney Bruser brings a fierce dedication to finding creative ways to express the brand through her graphic design work. But it’s not just the opportunity to express creativity that inspires Courtney in her work—her competitive spirit gets fired up as well. She made the move to Sibcy Cline in 2019 from a competing brokerage because, “the truth is, I wanted something bigger and better than my previous company offered.”
Courtney found the fit she was looking for in the Creative Services department of Sibcy Cline, the team that provides full-service marketing to our licensed agents—a differentiator that attracts many agents to the brokerage because they feel it gives them a jump ahead of agents from other brokerages. And it’s not just agents that benefit. As an employee, Courtney feels that the move she made to a well-recognized brand like Sibcy Cline has given her a competitive edge in her graphic design career. Courtney graduated from UC’s competitive College of Design, Art, Architecture, and Planning (DAAP) in 2014 and joined Sibcy Cline in October of 2019. So far, she feels satisfied that she has found a space where she can use and grow her skillset while forwarding the brand—and her career at the same time.
Because marketing innovation is and has always been a primary driver of business goals for Sibcy Cline, working as part of the Creative Services team gives Courtney the opportunity to feed her desire to “stand out from the competition” by trying new ideas that pull from all types of media and trends. “What’s amazing about the real estate industry is how diverse the audience is,” she said, adding that this is also a challenge because “you can’t serve the same message to everyone.”
Another challenge that Courtney willingly accepts about the real estate industry is the impact that social and economic events have. “Fair housing rules are important. I’m a big advocate for this because I’m pro-social activism. [In designing marketing pieces], it’s not what you say, but how you say it.” COVID was another big influencer on marketing in real estate, pushing the shift to digital and increasing the need to focus on tech solutions to increase efficiency. For Courtney, this is a huge positive change because it frees up time to get creative while looking at the big picture.
The big picture in Courtney’s role at Sibcy Cline involves seeing branding come to life across multiple channels, both digital and print, which she finds to be the most rewarding part of her job. “I love when we get the chance to make a mark together,” she said, citing two recent projects where she felt her design work and collaboration with others worked successfully.
One such successful project was creating the branding concept for 3CDC’s project at Academy Lofts, a condo development that involved renovating the old Art Academy dorms. “Who would have known that I’d spend some of my college years in the dorms and then work on selling them as condos in the future? It was serendipity,” said Courtney.
Another project that Courtney counts as her proudest career accomplishment is designing a campaign of social media graphics for Sibcy Cline’s Relocation division which won first place from LeadingRE for interactive media. The campaign was in competition with other independent brokerages around the world—in a category that Sibcy Cline falls at the lower end of the size category. That means that Courtney’s work was judged against brokerages with marketing teams much larger than Sibcy Cline—and won. “I’ve been involved in marketing entries to their competition for 6 years and finally won something. It’s a global prize!” she said.
When it comes to designing social media graphics, Courtney feels like she’s in her zone. “I’m comfortable with it because I grew up on the internet. Now, scrolling on a phone is just a reflex. I think about ways to make people stop—something unexpected to catch their eye.”
Along with branding building projects and winning marketing competitions, Courtney’s 2020 was a huge personal success. She took advantage of the low mortgage rates and her connections with Sibcy Cline and bought her first home—a rehabbed 120-year-old house in Northside. With the pandemic going on “I’ve had plenty of time to organize my knick-knacks and vinyl collection, take care of houseplants and my garden, and plan for future projects,” she says. What kind of future projects? For a designer with a creative fire that burns non-stop, her love of art touches her work, her home, and her body: “I’ll be working on my tattoo sleeve!” she said.