Off to see the Googleplex: Portland web firm wins trip to Google Engage 2013 All-Stars summit

Posted Aug. 07, 2013, at 6:11 p.m.
Jenika Scott and David Zwickerhill of Page One Web Solutions in Portland show off their excitement as they will travel to Google next week for the Engage All-Stars Summit in Mountain View, Calif.
Jenika Scott and David Zwickerhill of Page One Web Solutions in Portland show off their excitement as they will travel to Google next week for the Engage All-Stars Summit in Mountain View, Calif. Buy Photo
Jenika Scott and David Zwickerhill of Page One Web Solutions in Portland head to Google next week for the Engage All-Stars Summit in Mountain View, Calif.
Jenika Scott and David Zwickerhill of Page One Web Solutions in Portland head to Google next week for the Engage All-Stars Summit in Mountain View, Calif. Buy Photo

PORTLAND, Maine — When the email arrived from Google Inc. headquarters, Jenika Scott dismissed it at once.

The invitation to attend Google’s Engage All-Stars Summit next week struck the director of search engine marketing for Page One Web Solutions as too good to be true.

“I said, ‘Is this real? I think I’m being scammed,’” said Scott in her sprawling office overlooking Commercial Street in the city’s Old Port.

The Portland-based firm that helps companies be found on Google was selected for an all-expense trip to the search giant’s California headquarters because they reached revenue goals for their clients through Google AdWords and Google Engage software.

In a few days, Scott and co-worker David Zwickerhill will head to the Googleplex to join agencies from across the country and around the world for a daylong training session run by Google executives.

How did this 14-employee company that was camped above Three Dollar Deweys earlier this summer get plucked from obscurity?

As a member of Google Engage for Agencies, they, like many businesses working in online marketing, partner with Google on a daily basis.

“We are living in a Google world. Forty hours a week we are making decisions on what Google tells us to,” said Scott, who signed Page One up for an Engage membership over a year ago.

Google, which launched the program in 2011, did not return calls for comment.

Page One employees say 100 percent of their marketing campaigns are Google centric. They have up to 70 clients from quirky pet-focused social media companies such as Harry’s Picks to traditional e-commerce sites such as Sturbridge Yankee Workshop.

“We try to keep up with what Google deems as important,” said Scott. “That affects how we design sites, how we develop sites. We wouldn’t be an Internet marketing agency if there wasn’t a Google,” said Scott.

The web-development and inbound marketing company that formed in Ohio in 2006, recently moved to shiny new offices on Union Wharf and is on a mini hiring spree. When the staffers return from Silicon Valley they hope to gain insight into Google’s mysterious algorithms to make client’s pop up in online searches with greater frequently.

Company founder Patrick Sullivan was proud of his employees for making the cut.

“To be invited to the nerve center of one of the preeminent companies in our industry … It’s amazing. It speaks to the type of company we are and adds credibility,” he said.

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