While Ross Allen enjoys sampling craft beers, golfing, and spending time with his wife on weekends and his days off, one of his biggest passions is search engine optimization (SEO). And it’s something he gets to focus on every day in his work at Hurrdat Marketing, where he leads the SEO team.
As SEO Director, Allen gets to utilize his expertise by assessing new client needs, developing search engine optimization strategies, managing projects and tasks, and providing support and resources for the members of his team. Allen also oversees analytics and reporting work, producing in-depth reports for the agency’s clients, as well as Hurrdat’s many internal brands.
Allen has cultivated a good dynamic with his team, leading by example with his strong work ethic and focus on teamwork. “This has resulted in solid lines of communication that fuel a collaborative, friendly, and hard-working environment,” he says. Collaboration and productivity are things that he continues to foster as he grows the team, but he also wants to help each person develop in their roles.
“I want to shine the light on them to help them grow and develop into the best they can be. I encourage them to be critical thinkers, self-motivators, and accountable for the projects they’re working on, whilst providing the support they need to flourish.”
His many years working in computer technology and marketing—and SEO, specifically—have given Allen unparalleled experience. But SEO wasn’t something that existed when he first got started in his career.
Allen, who grew up in Leicester, England, got into computers after completing his youth studies. He’d taken a gap year, unsure of what he wanted to do with college, and started working. “That gap year turned into seven after I dipped my toes into the corporate world,” he adds.
While working in local government, Allen had an opportunity to move departments and ended up working with the database team, where he says his love of working with computers blossomed. A little over a year later, he left work behind and became a full-time student at De Montfort University, hoping to learn more about computers.
“The decision to quit work and go back to full-time education was by far the most challenging moment of my career so far. It would have been so easy just to stay where I was and coast through my career.”
As part of his degree coursework, he was placed with a web design team at a scientific instrument manufacturer, which became a catalyst for his future SEO work. By the time he graduated in 2005 with a degree in Multimedia Computing, Allen had extensive knowledge on everything you can do with a computer—from programming and 3D animation to photography and sound engineering.
Soon after, an old coworker reached out to Allen, asking if he’d be interested in a position at a language travel agency. This is where Allen was introduced to SEO. And just like that, a piece of career advice he’d been given was fully resonating with him: “Find something you love doing, and your job will never feel like work!” It’s a philosophy he still believes in today.
Eight years later, Allen packed his bags, hopped across the pond, and started working with Hurrdat Marketing as the agency’s go-to SEO wizard. “Hurrdat is a wonderful place to work,” he says. “From the variety of different projects that we work on and the phenomenal staff we work with to the fun but focused working environment cultivated by the rock star management.”
Allen believes good company leadership and business success is all about supporting employees. “You have to support and nurture your staff and provide them with the resources they need to effectively carry out their daily duties and produce the expected level of work, on time and on budget.”
Here at Hurrdat, that’s exactly what Allen does.