Marcus Tober, Searchmetrics founder and CTO, will step down in January 2019 -- turning the responsibilities of daily management and delivery of products to CEO Volker Smid.
Tober’s new responsibility as chief innovation officer will be to run the newly founded Searchmetrics Market Innovation Lab. In this role, he will focus on developing new search solutions.
Searchmetrics will not immediately appoint a new CTO. The change coincides with the company’s plans to introduce the seventh update of the company’s Searchmetrics Suite software.
Data fascinates Tober, who likes to solve problems. That included sometimes building prototypes on risky or bold ideas.
“Innovation was something that made me happy and kept me working fourteen-hour days,” he said. “When you grow and need to become a mature manager, things get more complex. So the idea of becoming a CIO is in me for quite some time. The execution itself is more fresh and in the works for a couple months.”
Reporting platforms are useful, but they don’t solve problems. They might have good reporting features and other bells and whistles, but the majority focus on reporting.
“What fascinates me is data science and how to apply data and knowledge to solve real problems in search,” he said. “For example, Google applied machine learning to search with RankBrain a couple years ago. I now want to work on deep-machine-learning techniques to make SEOs and decision makers smarter.”
The key is creating smart insights from search data that go far beyond reporting.
The lab will rely on Searchmetrics developers and data scientists to work on new search solutions, including tackling the toughest problems faced by clients who run campaigns on Google, Bing and other platforms as well as the technical search engine optimization experts and the marketing community.
Tober and the six-person innovation team will report directly to the Searchmetrics Board of Directors. “At the moment 90 people report to me, so I will have much more time to work with a smaller team,” he said.
Tober said he hopes to accomplish a lot in 2019, but declined to provide details. “It will be around leveraging data science on large sets of search ads,” he said.