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Star Tribune Movers & Shakers: Chris Peterson

Chris Peterson, Versique Search & Consulting
Title: Vice president, online marketing
Age: 37

April 28, 2014 — Chris Peterson is helping companies use interactive marketing to drive business results as vice president of online marketing at Versique Search & Consulting, a St. Louis Park-based executive search firm.

Peterson, who has more than 13 years of experience in the digital marketing industry, said he sees no slowdown in online marketing anytime soon.


“Every company needs to be working on online marketing in some fashion,” Peterson said. “That’s where everybody goes to find a service and when they do research on a business. Online marketing is only going to grow.”

Peterson oversees online marketing efforts both for Versique and for client companies, helping them develop interactive marketing strategies and use customized solutions such as search engine optimization, pay-per-click advertising management and social media marketing.

Peterson previously worked as vice president of online marketing at Risdall Marketing Group. Peterson’s clients at Risdall included Versique founders Tony Sorensen and Chris Ohlendorf, who chose him to launch Versique’s online marketing division.

In addition to outsourced online marketing services, Versique offers technology consulting and permanent placement services for companies seeking to start or expand internal online marketing teams, Peterson said.

Peterson, who has a bachelor’s degree in marketing from Montana State University, said a college internship at an e-commerce company propelled him into digital marketing as that field was emerging in the early 2000s.

“It allowed me to see that I truly love how online marketing worked, and I found that I could take a lot of traditional aspects of marketing and directly apply them online,” Peterson said.

Q: What is your goal in developing online marketing strategies?

A: We can help them to drive whatever it is from a business standpoint that they’re trying to do on the Web. That’s ultimately what’s most important to me, how we help them with their business objectives and what we use from an online standpoint to help drive those business objectives.

Q: What goes into a successful online marketing campaign?

A: At this point search engines drive 50 percent of traffic to websites. So you need to put a solid search engine optimization or pay-per-click program into place as a foundation … then facilitate lots of other tactics that go along with that.

Q: How has your early introduction to online marketing influenced your work?

A: I’ve been doing this for a long time and have seen a lot of ­different ways to do things. Taking some of that knowledge and going to corporations and trying to figure out how I can help them, that’s what I wanted to do.

View the Star Tribune’s Movers & Shaker profile of Chris Peterson.