For Oklahoma moms Darcy Schein and Leslie Coale-Mossman, business
began with one homemade pie at a time. "Leslie and I started out just
spending time cooking for our kids," Darcy says. "We quickly figured
out that we had a lot of friends who wanted help in the kitchen. So
in 2010, we started a small catering business, providing one pie a
week to a local startup restaurant." Customers wanted to know, “Who
made the pie?” That initial slice of exposure created enough buzz for
the women to open a shop in 2013 in Oklahoma City's Plaza District.
"Pie Junkie is a labor of love," Darcy says. "We make quiche in the
morning and a number of sweet options by the slice. Folks can come in
and enjoy a slice of pie and a cup of coffee. Or they can order a pie
for a special occasion. And we do everything in our tiny
Since their humble beginnings baking out of a church kitchen, Pie Junkie has maintained a strong web and social media presence. They launched their business using Gmail to take orders, from grandma-inspired apple crumble pies to modern delights such as macadamia key lime pie. And today, with a physical storefront, their Google My Business listing works with Google Search and Maps to drive customers into their shop. It includes photos, store hours, directions, a link to their website, and Google reviews from satisfied pie lovers. "We know from customers that's how they find us," Darcy says. “And fortunately for us, there is an easy map that will guide them here because we are a tiny shop located in a tricky, hard-to-find spot.”
Business for Pie Junkie has increased steadily, garnering press mentions from national publications. Darcy and Leslie give back to their community through their Pie-It-Forward program, where once a month they select a local charity to receive a portion of their sales, along with gift certificates. "We live in a wonderful community, where business owners support one another," Darcy says. "We're really grateful to be a part of it."
Pie Junkie Oklahoma City, Oklahoma
Oklahoma City, Oklahoma
“When customers leave us a good review on Google, we know it makes an impact.”Darcy Schein, Co-owner & Co-founderPie Junkie has 16 employees.link www.piejunkie.com
For Oklahoma moms Darcy Schein and Leslie Coale-Mossman, business began with one homemade pie at a time. "Leslie and I started out just spending time cooking for our kids," Darcy says. "We quickly figured out that we had a lot of friends who wanted help in the kitchen. So in 2010, we started a small catering business, providing one pie a week to a local startup restaurant." Customers wanted to know, “Who made the pie?” That initial slice of exposure created enough buzz for the women to open a shop in 2013 in Oklahoma City's Plaza District. "Pie Junkie is a labor of love," Darcy says. "We make quiche in the morning and a number of sweet options by the slice. Folks can come in and enjoy a slice of pie and a cup of coffee. Or they can order a pie for a special occasion. And we do everything in our tiny 1,000-square-foot shop."Pie Junkie has 16 employees.link www.piejunkie.com
Sooner Marketing Solutions Tulsa, Oklahoma
Sooner Marketing Solutions
“We recently had someone find us online, and it was our biggest project ever.”Braedon Kruse, CEOSooner Marketing Solutions has 10 employees.link www.soonermarketing.com
Braedon Kruse founded Sooner Marketing Solutions in 2012 to assist owners of small and medium sized businesses with finding success and customers online. “We help frustrated business owners to expand and grow their companies, find better branding, and gain more awareness,” Braedon says. Their customers range from a window-tinting business and automotive repair companies, and consultants. They may need anything from a website upgrade to full digital services. “We want them to see our company as an all-around marketing department to devise creative solutions,” adds Justin Hernandez, Chief Operating Officer.
“We see a lot of great, awesome businesses start up and then fall through the cracks because nobody knows about them,” Braedon says. Sooner Marketing Solutions uses a wide variety of digital tools to help prevent that, particularly AdWords, Google’s advertising program, and Google Search Console. “By creating a well-performing AdWords campaign, we help our customers reach their sales goals in a very efficient timeframe,” Justin explains. Google Analytics helps Sooner track and improve the effectiveness of their clients’ websites, as well as their own. Google Trends keeps them abreast of what people are searching for online and Search Console helps them optimize their clients’ sites for maximum visibility. According to Braedon, “We’re always engaged with what Google is doing, so that we can not only adjust our own marketing, but also our clients'.”
Sooner Marketing Solutions now has 10 employees who annually serve 70 to 90 regional customers across Oklahoma, Texas, Arkansas, Missouri, and Kansas. The company routinely sees quarterly growth more than double, year-over-year. Their clients often report very strong growth themselves, thanks in part to their work with Sooner Marketing Solutions. “I was told I was crazy for saying that I wanted to triple our gross sales this year,” Braedon says. “But I believe it's going to happen. And every time we increase our sales, I think about all of our clients’ businesses, and how we're helping them increase their sales, too. When our clients grow, we grow with them.”Sooner Marketing Solutions has 10 employees.link www.soonermarketing.com
Noah’s Park and Playgrounds Edmond, Oklahoma
Noah’s Park and Playgrounds
“This is a family business—and look where we’re going. We would not be where we are today without Google.”Shannon Shepherd, Co-owner10 employeeslink www.noahsplay.com
Husband-and-wife team Shannon (Shan) and DeAnn Shepherd started Noah’s Park and Playgrounds in 2001, designing and installing custom park and playground equipment. They built their first website in 2005, but it wasn’t until they hired Brenda Flesher as their website/marketing director in 2007 that their focus turned online. Shan recalls, “It was clear that the Internet was going to be important, and that’s where we were headed.” In 2011, they started doing online sales, and that’s when they first looked to Google.
The company started using AdWords, Google’s advertising program, at the end of 2011. Brenda recalls, “We stuck our big toe in, and realized it was going to have a really good impact. In the year we started AdWords, we had over 30 percent growth in our profit.” In the next three years they saw profits rise as they began offering their products and services online. DeAnn explains, "While we still have sales representatives in several states, thanks to our Internet presence, we have seen continual growth patterns in states where we do not have boots-on-the-ground sales reps. That's pretty remarkable." The company also uses Google Apps for Work. “Due to file size and our image-driven products, it helps to have Google Docs, to be able to share product designs with customers and suppliers," shared Brenda. And they rely on Google Earth to capture images of the outdoor spaces they are going to design.
Today, the company’s custom playgrounds are being enjoyed on a national scale. “We’re getting customers from all four corners of the country,” says Shan, including the contiguous 48 states and even Hawaii. To achieve this reach, they spend 75 percent of their advertising budget online and continue to see a huge return through AdWords. “In 2014, every dollar we spent on AdWords resulted in over $20 in profits,” shared Brenda. “Google took us from a small family business to a full-fledged company with nationwide exposure. And it has broadened our borders further than we could have on our own,” says DeAnn.10 employeeslink www.noahsplay.com