Elite SEM Wins Best Agency at U.S. Search Awards

Elite SEM won big in Las Vegas last night. They weren’t playing craps or blackjack — well, they may have been — but the New York-based search engine marketing firm was named Best Agency at the second annual U.S. Search Awards at Pubcon.

The agency also won the award last year, giving them a perfect record. Other winners include AOL’s GSD Audience Development Team, named Best Team, and Search Personality of the Year Duane Forrester, senior product manager with Bing’s Webmaster Program.

Entries were judged by a panel of 21 search industry experts, including Pubcon chief executive (CEO) Brett Tabke. The panel of judges consisted of executives from some of Elite’s competitors, which to CEO Ben Kirshner, was the most flattering part of his firm’s victory.

“The fact that our peers voted us best of the best is very humbling, and it’s nice to know we have such a great reputation in the industry,” Kirshner says. “To do it two years in a row is unbelievable. We’re super stoked, just shocked and humbled.”

The full list of awards includes:

  • Best In-House Team: AOL, GSD Audience Development Team
  • Best Consultant: Motoko Hunt, International Search Marketer, AJPR LLC
  • Young Search Professional of the Year: Katie Donabedian, Digital Marketing Specialist at Walker Sands Digital
  • U.S. Search Personality of the Year: Duane Forrester, Senior Product Manager, Bing
  • Grand Prix: The Absolut Company – AbsolutDrinks.com SEO 
  • Best Mobile Campaign: 360i and Red Roof Inn, Turning Flight Cancellations Into Hotel Reservations
  • Best PPC Campaign: Point It, Microsoft Store Global Campaign Expansion
  • Best SEO Campaign: Portent, RealTruck.com – SEO Campaign
  • Best Integrated Campaign: Zenni Optical, Integrated Online Marketing Campaign – Managed By Wpromote
  • Best Local Campaign: RKG & Bealls Florida, Increasing Market Share by Effectively Capturing Local Demand
  • Best Low-Budget Campaign: Webspec Design, Strauss Security Solutions SEO Campaign
  • Best Innovation: Adobe Media Optimizer
  • Best PPC Management Software: Marin Software, Online Advertising Management Platform
  • Best SEO Software: Searchmetrics Suite, The Global Search Experience Optimization Platform
  • Best Use of Search, Finance: Mannix Marketing, Inbound Marketing Campaign for Acquisition & Funding Services
  • Best Use of Search, Retail: The Absolut Company, AbsolutDrinks.com SEO 
  • Best Use of Search, Travel and Leisure: Havas Media, Levaraging Technology to Beat Inflation
  • Best Use of PR in a Search Campaign: Walker Sands Digital, Mobile Traffic Report
  • Best Use of Social Media in a Search Campaign: Kenshoo, Facebook and Experian, Finding the Sweet Spot for Search and Social Investment

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