Search boss quits for Touch Group

Karl Gregory, Yahoo! UK & Ireland’s head of marketing for its search engine division, has been poached by online directories company Touch Group to be its new marketing director.

Karl Gregory, Yahoo! UK & Ireland’s head of marketing for its search engine division, has been poached by online directories company Touch Group to be its new marketing director.

At Yahoo!, Gregory had a key role in the management team and was a driving force behind the development of Yahoo! Search.

Before joining Yahoo! in 2004 (MW November 25, 2004), Gregory was marketing director for AltaVista International. AltaVista was then an autonomous unit of search engine giant Overture, also owned by Yahoo!

Since then, Yahoo! has begun to merge its search operations – which also include shopping comparison site Kelkoo.

At AltaVista, Gregory was responsible for rebranding and relaunching the brand as a search engine rather than a portal.

Gregory started his career on the agency side, working at Ogilvy & Mather and then later at MindShare, where he handled new media and the internet for Ford in Europe.

He then became a digital marketing consultant, working for clients including Volvo, Nestlé and Kimberly-Clark.

Touch Group operates one of the UK’s largest online search directories, www.touchlocal.com, which divides the UK into 114 “city” areas. As marketing director, Gregory will be primarily responsible for building touchlocal.com’s customer base and turning it into an authoritative UK online business directory.

Gregory says: “This is an exciting time for the industry – search is going to be local. The whole business directory market is going through a massive overhaul.”

The group also includes Touch Search Marketing, which offers Pay per Call, Pay per Click as well as search management and search optimisation services, and Touch Briefings, which publishes market reports and other business information products.

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