When I spoke with Nancy, the recruiter supporting our Central Marketing Group, yesterday and she mentioned this open position, I thought it sounded really cool (there's a similar position open focused on Windows Desktop and Mobile too). The kind of branding experience we are looking for is the kind the deals with the brand identity, not the kind of brand management you would see at a consumer packaged goods company where they focus on consumer product management (although we look for those kinds of folks as well). Anyway, the job description follows and if you think you are this person, feel free to send me your resume at heathham@microsoft.com..I'll send it straight to Nancy. If you think you know this person and they might be interested, feel free to send me their name or give them my contact info...

PS: we've got an interesting CRM role open that I'll post about soon as well.

Brand Manager
Help build a new strategic brand for Microsoft! The Windows Server System Branding Group (within the Central Marketing Group) needs a strategic thinker with passion for marketing and the energy, creativity and cross-functional skills to help develop and drive an effective brand marketing strategy to unify Microsoft’s overall server offering! This positing is key to building and managing a successful brand that spans across 20+ server products and some of Microsoft's most important and growing businesses.

There are three core components to this particular role- Brand Tools, Integration and Implementation, and Training and Communication.
Specifically, you’ll be responsible for:
Brand Tools & Operations
- Develop guidelines, tools, and templates to integrate the brand consistently into core marketing materials worldwide to improve efficiency and quality of branding
- Manage Windows Server System Brand Tools web site. Ensure that online materials are clear, compelling, and up-to-date.
- Manage all brand assets and their availability online- product and brand logotype, brand colors, IT photography and supporting graphics.
- Manage vendors (site manager, editor, graphics designer) to produce all content updates and reflect best practices
Brand Integration and Implementation
- Drive brand integration and implementation of brand identity system in accordance with WSS brand guidelines into marketing communications.
- Build relationships with key stakeholders to drive brand integration across core marketing touch points- GTMs, UI, packaging, presentations, events…
- Monitor success of implementation on a regular basis to assess brand usage and best practices, evolve brand guidelines
- Manage the brand support alias “wssbrand”
- Manage third party cobranding requests and internal requests for logos and branding.
- Naming projects (Out-of-band releases, features, UI, code name)

Training and Internal Communications
-Develop and execute training plan to educate key internal groups across Microsoft and external vendors.
- Develop best of breed training tools and collateral
- In partnership with the Business Group, CMG, and CorpComm deliver a plan for increasing internal awareness and enthusiasm across core marketing and business group managers in the US, and subsidiary office.

As needed branding projects:
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- Important, unplanned for projects always emerge that require smart thinking and quick attention. Everyone on the team needs to be flexible and willing to take these on from time to time or to help out with a colleague who has become overloaded.

All three aspects of the job will have a tremendous impact on how the Windows Server System brand is brought to life around the world.

The ideal candidate for this role will have senior level experience along with 6-8+ years in marketing and minimum 2 years driving brand strategy and execution. Business and/or technology brand experience is imperative. Knowledge of the Windows or Windows Mobile businesses a plus. Key to success in this role is a demonstrated strength managing virtual teams and strategic initiatives with senior individuals and broad knowledge of Microsoft solutions and competitive offerings.

- Must be fluent in corporate objectives, business objectives, and product and technology strategies
- Strong knowledge of how to build and maintain strong brands
- An in-depth, strategic understanding of the relationship between brands and the many facets of marketing communications as they relate to brand management, e.g., advertising, public relations, internal communications and visual identity
- The ability to assimilate corporate and business group strategy and objectives and develop brand programs that support business goals
- Strong interpersonal, negotiation, and conflict-management skills

BS/BA required; MBA preferred. This position has frequent contact with all levels of Microsoft and periodic contact with Microsoft executive management.