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Meet Tereza Ilieva – SEO and Paid Campaigns Manager

Meet Tereza Ilieva – SEO and Paid Campaigns Manager

Published on: 31 May 2023 9 min read

Hi there, I am Tereza or Teri in short. I am a cheerful, caring, positive, some say I am a sunshine mixed with a little typhoon (let’s count the later for two words!)

On your background


I was raised in a very loving atmosphere in a city know as The Little Vienna – Ruse. I am extremely proud of my whole family. We live far away now, but I often organize small events to spend more time with them.


In 2015, I successfully completed my studies in the Netherlands at the third most esteemed university for media and communications in Europe at that time. It may be hard to believe, but my journey there was so rich and impactful that I could easily write an entire book about it.

However, for the purpose of this blog section, I will condense my experience into two words: taught and memorable. Out of a total of 450 students, only 42 of us graduated. I have an extremely strong academic background because my learning process was full of projects with international brands like Heineken, Philips, Shell and G-star. These four years immersed me in the marketing world and made me fortunate to have chosen a profession that perfectly aligns with my personality.

During my time at the university, I grew as a marketeer and an individual. I am incredibly grateful that at such an early stage in my life, I had the opportunity to interact with people from diverse nationalities and cultures. This exposure allowed me to foster meaningful connections and contribute to creative endeavors, and I am forever thankful for this huge ‘start’.

Your first job and how did you start your career journey?

A job to remember!

Story background: I was in my 2nd year when I had to choose a place to do my 6-month internship. I knew I had to find a flexible company that could use my limited knowledge, but at the same time, give me a huge stage for ideas, tests and mistakes.

Story plot: I found a 360-degree advertising agency that accepted me with all of my specific conditions. I worked very hard, learnt a lot about strategies, content creation, the psychology of sharing and all that ‘good stuff’ used to influence people always to want and buy more.

Story twist: They were so happy with my work that they hired me after the apprenticeship. I continued working for them for almost 2 more years totally online and from a distance, which nowadays may be considered a norm, but back in 2012, it was a WOW experience!

Story end: I had to leave them because of my graduation plan and the inability to do my regular tasks anymore. PS. I am still very close with some of my teammates there and if you guys are reading this, I really do appreciate your efforts towards me and my career growth.

Tell us about your role in Scalefocus

My role in Scalefocus is very dynamic. It is a mix of technical and creative work and a lot of collaboration. My job description says I oversee and implement strategies related to search engine optimization (SEO) and paid advertising campaigns, but there is so much more than that. I adore that it involves collaborating with cross-functional teams, such as sales, HR, content creators, web developers and designers. I work closely with them to align all efforts with the overall marketing goals and ensure consistency in messaging and brand voice.

I manage and optimize paid advertising campaigns across various platforms like Google, Facebook, LinkedIn, Twitter, YouTube, etc. I develop campaign strategies, set objectives, give ideas for ad copies and designs, select target audiences, and monitor campaign performance. The most challenging part here is to get insights from all the data you gather and utilize it to optimize campaigns for maximum ROI.

From an SEO perspective, to improve organic search rankings and increase website visibility, my main tasks are related to conducting topic and keyword research, analyzing website performance, giving ideas to optimize on-page elements and creating content strategies.

My ultimate goal is to increase generated leads, improve conversion rates and help the company attract new talent and new business and projects.

Tell us about your team & colleagues

If I have to use a marketing term – one of the Unique Selling Points (USP) of Scalefocus is its people, and I really enjoy working with my colleagues. I believe that the team spirit and positive vibes between different teams contribute to the outstanding results we achieve and the overall company growth.

I feel fortunate to have met so many exceptionally intelligent, talented, and vibrant individuals who make every aspect of our work seamless, from communication to project implementation.

I also really like my team and to be honest, I consider some of them to be more than just colleagues. Our bond extends beyond the office walls, as we often gather for personal occasions, parties, and even go on vacations together. It’s amazing how our professional collaboration effortlessly transitioned into genuine friendships. It turns out that working with those awesome creatures is just a labor of love.

What makes you proud and confident about your work? 

I am super proud that I never make a compromise with quality. I consistently strive for excellence and have an insatiable drive to achieve more. Setting higher goals that push me to evolve is something I will never be tired of. I challenge myself daily to deliver exceptional digital marketing ads and SEO campaigns. The most rewarding aspect is witnessing the tangible results validating the invested effort. This brings confidence. My confidence comes mainly from my rich professional background and my successful projects because once you know you can deliver results, you don`t panic easily.

How do you keep your professional skills current so that you can do your job well? How do you learn?

To excel at work, I follow my 20/80 rule, which relies on the correct time allocation between personal and team development. I keep my knowledge and skills current as I devote 20% of my total working time to my personal growth. As a digital guru, it is crucial for me to stay up-to-date with the latest trends and technologies. To achieve this, I regularly immerse myself in various educational resources. I engage in extensive reading of scientific articles and reports, attend webinars, watch educational videos, and enroll in relevant online courses.

Can you recommend a book, podcast, or any resources you find valuable?

I am very careful with recommendations. What I find value in might be non-practical or even useless for others due to different experiences, preferences, etc. That is why I would simply recommend people to find 1 or 2 sources which can give them vast and trustworthy information for their professional growth and stick to it. Be consistent in reading or listening to it. Consistency is valuable, especially when talking about digital marketing careers which often undergo rapid changes. I have tried to turn my activity of checking the latest news into a work ‘hobby’ and every day, the Search Engine Journal gives me that dose of updates.

What do you want to say to your future self?

Teri, I encourage you to maintain your optimism and analytical approach towards every situation you encounter in life. Keep prioritizing the ability to make rational decisions over emotional ones, as it will lead to better outcomes. Always remember to embrace mistakes as valuable learning opportunities and consistently seek growth from them. And never forget to turn off the iron!   

What is the most challenging/exciting thing about your work? 

It is the ever-evolving nature of the field. Digital marketing is a fast-paced industry that constantly introduces new technologies, platforms, strategies and regulations. On the other hand, keeping up with the constant changes requires a continuous learning mindset.

The exciting part comes when I leverage those new tools to reach and engage with our potential clients. I am trying to be innovative and find unique ways to cut through the noise and capture the attention of the audience. Additionally, understanding key performance indicators (KPIs), conducting testing, and optimizing campaigns based on data are essential for success.

How do you manage your work-life balance? 

Achieving work-life balance is an ongoing process that requires conscious effort and self-awareness. Mine is improving with every year, as I become more mindful of my own boundaries and accept that there will be times when work or personal demands may take precedence.

In general, it is all about priorities and my well-being is among the first ones on the list. Moreover, taking care of myself ultimately makes me more productive and fulfilled at work.

Music, hobbies, family, pets, and everything in between – who are you outside Scalefocus?

I am an incredibly dynamic individual who embraces diversity and contrasts. Through my life journey, I have discovered that experimentation is the best way to grow. Over the years, I have had the privilege of being surrounded by individuals with vastly different lifestyles. As a result, I have developed a genuine appreciation for various forms of music, such as jazz, rock and rap. I can find equal joy in indulging in luxurious accommodations at a 5-star hotel or immersing myself in the serenity of nature by sleeping in a tent. My weekends can range from peaceful moments of relaxation to action-packed trips filled with sports activities.

While I have a multitude of interests, there are three passions that hold a special place in my heart. Firstly, I have a strong desire to travel and explore different cultures. Secondly, I find joy in chasing breathtaking sunsets, captivated by the beauty they offer. Lastly, my deepest and most cherished passion is for animals. For the last 6 years I had the most wonderful dog called Charlie. Unfortunately, a few weeks ago, he passed away, so now I am in search of new activities and adventures to fill the void.

Your best advice for newcomers?

Trust your hard work, it’s unlocking doors you can’t see yet. Apart from this, try to be honest about who you are, what are your feelings, hopes and desires as this will help you make your teammates friends and reach your goals faster.

Starting a new job can be stressful, but with the right mindset you can make a positive impact and thrive wherever you go.

How would you explain your job to your grandmother?

I am the person that helps businesses get noticed on the internet by making sure their websites show up at the top of Google. I can be the one that put that advertisement you saw on Facebook, advertising the nearest knitting store to you with an adorable kitten. Basically, I am putting up big signs on the internet that say, “Come check out this amazing business”.

Why Scalefocus?

Ugh, I hate clichés, but it is just the people coupled with very exciting projects. For me, it is just a feeling that I have come to the right place and I want to stay. The company gives me the opportunity to have fun, take on responsibility, grow and make an impact in an extremely friendly environment. If you don’t believe me, come check it by yourself 😉.

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