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Microsoft picks new Windows Phone marketing VP for revival

updated 06:20 pm EDT, Mon March 19, 2012

Thom Gruhler becomes Windows Phone marketing VP

Microsoft hoped to turn around its mobile strategy on Monday with word it had hired Thom Gruhler to become its Corporate VP of Windows Phone Marketing. He was leaving a position as the managing partner for technology at major ad agency McCann Worldgroup. As part of his history, he's best known for running the team that developed Verizon's "can you hear me now?" TV ads as well as work with Sony Ericsson.

In explaining the jump, Gruhler in a statement said that Windows Phone was "starting to turn heads in a very competitive market." To him, that was a sign there was a product to stand behind and from which he could build.

"When you put a Windows Phone into someone's hands they love it, which is the ideal place to start as a marketer," Gruhler said. "I'm looking forward to working with the team to build consumer awareness and excitement for Windows Phone products and the overall brand."

The new hire comes at a time when Microsoft's smartphone performance is at a low point. It has just 1.5 percent of the market as many of those who had previously been Windows Mobile loyalists have left for Android or the iPhone rather than opt for Windows Phone. Nokia has been an injection of life into Windows Phone, but it hasn't fully countered problems at virtually every other Windows Phone manufacturer.

Microsoft has been investing large amounts of marketing money into Windows Phone. It's believed to have invested $500 million just in the fall 2010 ad blitz for Windows Phone and may have devoted over $100 million just to US launches for early 2012, such as the Nokia Lumia 900. Hiring one of the industry's top advertisers is a tacit acknowledgment that previous campaigns had failed, especially as Apple and individual Android supporters may have paid considerably less at times than Microsoft to a greater effect.

by MacNN Staff



  1. jhawk95

    Joined: Dec 1969


    Who Is He Trying To Kid?

    "When you put a Windows Phone into someone's hands they love it"

    Which windows phone is he talking about? And where are these people that love it?

    I do not know ONE person who has a Windows Phone. Most people I know have iPhones and a good number have Android phones. I can honestly say that most of the Android users are planning on their next phone being from Apple..

    Please provide us with video testimonials of current HAPPY Windows phone users.... because I have never even seen one of these phones in the wild yet.

    Then again... he has to spew this $hit from his mouth since they just hired him and I am sure they grossly overpaid him.

  1. Mr. Strat

    Joined: Dec 1969


    Oh yeah

    People sure do turn their heads when they see one - they turn their heads away.

    I have seen a few Windows Phone 7 units out there, and the owners seem happy. But it might be because it's their first smartphone. The interface is horrible and nobody is buying them.

  1. climacs

    Joined: Dec 1969


    who is he trying to kid

    with that hairpiece?

  1. chas_m




    Windows Phone 7.5 doesn't seem that bad to me. It's not as good as iOS, for sure, but at least it's not a crappy imitation of iOS like "that other smartphone platform." Honest competition is not a bad thing, and whatever you think of Windows Phone it is Microsoft's offering and as far as I can tell -- apart from a severe lack of apps -- it's an honest alternative for those who want one. When WP8 comes out we might WELL see some pickup in popularity at Android's expense, given that there is a segment of the market that are so blinded with Apple hate that they would buy a tin can with string rather than an iPhone (but can't give you any good reasons why).

  1. Foe Hammer

    Joined: Dec 1969


    WP New Ad Campaign

    [massive price cut]

    Will you buy me now?

    [BOGO Offer]

    Will you buy me now?

    [Another massive price cut]

    Will you buy me NOW?

    [BOGT* Offer] *Twelve

    Dammit, will you buy me NOW???

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