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Our Team

Smarter Searches is an award-winning, digital marketing agency located in Knoxville, TN, focused on creating effective internet marketing campaigns.

We believe in thinking SMARTER. Thinking smarter has a ton of definitions, but for us, it means focusing on strategy and performance. It means being able to work both collaboratively with our clients and independently. It also means being brighter, cooler, and more creative. It means thinking quicker and faster.

We believe that good design is not a luxury good. We believe that seeking diverse perspectives and working as a team make a more successful product. With our unique process of carefully learning about your customer personas, diving deep into the data, and focusing on strategic, brand cohesion and ad creative, we are able to design campaigns that build your business.

We are a digital marketing agency that is just as comfortable building your brand from the ground up, designing and hosting your website, and creating a logo, as we are enhancing your existing brand with increased search engine visibility, advertising, and social media content.

But more than that, we are an agency that understands how people use the internet so intrinsically, that we can also make sure users find you when they Google you, that customers want to engage with your brand on social media, and that your advertising brings real results – phone calls, sales, leads, and engagement. We are a team of strategists, creatives, thinkers, and hard workers. We combine significant expertise with real data to meet your business’ goals and help you show up online.

Get to know our team

Our Core Principles

What We’re About

Strategy Sessions

Every quarter, we take a day off to talk about every single client and take a deep look at what we could be doing better, how we can be more effective, and what emerging technologies could work for each of them. It allows us to pause the day-to-day and think outside the box. So many great ideas have emerged from these strategy sessions and they’re one of our favorite things.

Personality Profiles

Our team genuinely loves and cares about one another. And one of the main reasons is because we understand each other. Every year we get together and talk through our personality profiles – DISC, Myers Briggs, and Enneagram, to better learn how to communicate with each other and work better together.

Pool Days

Sunshine is good for the mind, body, and soul. Our team firmly believes that a little time working outside allows us to be more creative, more productive, and happier team members. Living in beautiful Knoxville, TN, also has its merits with four glorious seasons and pool weather that lasts ¾ of the year. As a result, it’s not uncommon for us to spend an occasional weekday afternoon in the balmy Knoxville summer with our laptops poolside.

Meet Our People

Courtney Herda

Founder and CEO

Chris Wilson


Mara Deyo

Senior Designer

Lani Fort

Senior Brand Manager

Jojo Apodaca

SEM Manager

Interested in joining our team?

See our openings →

Meet Our Intern, Jessica!

Headshot of Smarter Searches intern Jessica against a white background.

Hi, my name is Jessica and I’m a senior at the University of Tennessee graduating this Spring with dual degrees in Advertising and Psychology. I love the creative side of the industry and recently updated my portfolio website to feature all of my advertising and digital design work! When I’m not spending my free time in front of the computer working on design projects, I enjoy traveling, listening to music, and going to concerts. I’m so excited to be joining the team at Smarter Searches and look forward to learning more about digital marketing!

If you’re interested in our internship program or learning more about Smarter Searches, send a resume and writing sample to

Have we convinced you that we’re awesome yet?

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