Questeq, known for empowering school districts via education technology management, along with its advertising agency Odato Marketing Group, won the 2013 Grand Marketer of the Year award and Best of Category, Education, at the American Marketing Association Pittsburgh chapter’s seventh annual Marketer of the Year Awards, held December 12 at LeMont restaurant in Pittsburgh.

Odato Marketing has won previous category awards in collaboration with clients in Consumer Products and Manufacturing, but this is the agency’s first Grand Marketer award—the highest honor issued by the chapter.

“If you can take a 30-year-old company and double it in size in one year, while spending mostly reseller marketing development dollars, that’s doing something,” said Questeq CEO, Jeffrey Main. “This is a sterling B-to-B case study that shows the kind of results a company can achieve when sales and marketing, agency and client, reseller and manufacturer, work together seamlessly.”

Marketer of the Year is Pittsburgh’s only results-based marketing competition. Each entry was ranked by points awarded from the judging panel, with 40% of the points based on the results of the campaign. AMA Pittsburgh is the largest professional marketing association in Western Pennsylvania, with more than 300 active members.

Odato Marketing’s Pittsburgh and Sarasota team members collaborated with Questeq’s sales and marketing team to develop the campaign, which has nearly doubled Questeq’s size and revenue. Elements of the program included new messaging, website, animated video, manufacturer co-op, trade shows, special events, and a focused lead generation system that reached out electronically to more than 8,000 K-12 Superintendents with thought-provoking content each week.

“What’s great about the AMA competition is that it recognizes the total marketing approach along with the nice creative stuff that everyone sees,” said Bruce Downing VP/GM Odato Marketing Group. “What we achieved with Questeq was truly a collaboration to narrow the company’s focus in order widen its revenue opportunities. We’ve achieved growth for our client and we are helping to improve K-12 education for our kids.”

Live tweets issued from participants at the Marketer of the Year event were digitally transmitted and displayed to high-profile digital outdoor boards in real time. The winners, plus a Distinguished Educator and Hall of Fame nominee will continue to be shared on the outdoor boards donated by Lamar until January, 2014.

For nearly 30 years, Questeq has provided high-quality, US-based outsourced IT solutions for top school districts, helping them keep up with constantly changing technology while redirecting scarce resources from operations to teaching. Details at

Odato Marketing Group, a Sarasota and Pittsburgh advertising agency, offers strategy, advertising, public relations, social media and internet marketing services, as well as video production. The firm operates under the philosophy “Outsmart, Not Outspend™” because many Odato Marketing clients are challenger brands facing deep-pocketed competition. Details at

“AMA’s Marketer of the Year is Pittsburgh’s only results-based marketing competition,” said Allison Miller, 2013 AMA President. “In a competition that celebrates achieving or exceeding goals, this year we received more entries than ever, which just may be reflective of the pressure put on all marketers to produce bona fide results today.”

From the hundreds of entries received, the judges selected the following winners:


Category: Education

QUESTEQ | Agency Partner: Odato Marketing Group

Category: B2B Products/Services

MSA THE SAFETY COMPANY | Agency Partner: Smith Brothers Agency

Category: Consumer Products/Services

STARKIST | Agency Partner: Pavone Advertising

Category: Financial Services

DONALD HAMM & SONS | Agency Partner: Droz & Associates

Category: Media Promotions

DUQUESNE LIGHT, WATT CHOICES | Agency Partner: Z Brand Group

Category: Medical & Healthcare

UPMC BIOETHICS CENTER | Agency Partner: Informa Group

Category: Nonprofits


Category: Professional Services


Category: Technical Products / Services

VERIZON | Partner: Pittsburgh Penguins

Distinguished Educator of the Year: Debbie DeLong, Ph.D., Chatham University

Hall of Fame Inductee: Phipps Conservatory and Botanical Gardens’ Center for Sustainable Landscapes

Odato Marketing

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