What is a fractional cmo?


Is your company expanding yet your marketing approach is out of hand? To ensure that your company continues to grow, you need high-level marketing guidance and management. However your organization might not have the budget yet to the level to hire and afford a top-notch Chief Marketing Executive yet. Have you considered hiring a Fractional CMO?  

So, what are the options for a company owner? In order to meet their marketing objectives, an increasing number of businesses are turning to a fractional CMO. Fractional CMO services enable startups and smaller enterprises to gain the benefits of collaborating with top CMO expertise. In this article, we’ll cover all there is to know about fractional CMOs. 

What Does A Fractional CMO Do?

Fractional Chief Marketing Officers (CMOs) are in charge of all marketing in a company. A fractional CMO will do all of the functions that a regular CMO would perform. Your organization benefits from executive expertise without incurring the expense of a full-time employee. 

In most cases, fractional CMOs are responsible for the following tasks:

  • Overseeing the marketing team
  • Creating a short-term and long-term marketing plan
  • Responding immediately to any marketing issues that may occur
  • Managing partners, marketing team, and/or third party contractors
  • Recruiting and onboarding new employees
  • Creating a marketing and sales automation system
  • Supervise marketing technology integration
  • Get more leads, expand email list and increase engagement
  • Manage digital marketing
  • Increasing and optimizing one’s presence online
  • Develop the reporting you need to make revenue-generating choices
  • Developing client retention and loyalty initiatives

It is equally important to understand what a fractional CMO does NOT do before you begin searching through portfolios in search of the perfect candidate. 

A Fractional CMO, On The Other Hand, Is Unlikely To:

  • Write and send all of the emails to your distribution list
  • Post blog entries on your website
  • Posting on social media accounts
  • Design your website product
  • Work 9 to 5 on a specified set of duties

Why Do You Need A Fractional CMO?

The following are the benefits of working with a fractional CMO:

Expertise and practical experience 

Having a seasoned fractional CMO on your team can help your business grow. Strategically this is a distinct advantage over competing businesses that as an alternative might lack a member of leadership with a full wheelhouse of marketing expertise. A fractional CMO will understand how to develop a strategy, set a budget, manage marketing personnel, and offer direction to your company’s marketing team. They have the ability to generate ideas that will most likely result in high-quality outcomes.

Getting the most out of your budget

Joining forces with a Fractional CMO may give you the expertise and knowledge you want at a fraction of the expense of hiring a full-time CMO. You will be able to optimize your budget since you will be able to devote funds for things such as additional marketing initiatives, products and technology. 


Your marketing department can benefit from the guidance of a marketing specialist with extensive experience. A good fractional CMO can demonstrate leadership in order to gain the confidence of not just the team they supervise, but also other stakeholders.

Improved interaction and communication

An experienced Fractional CMO, can not only boost your external interactions with consumers and prospects, but they will also serve as an advocate for your brand and messaging internally inside the organization.

Identification and acquisition of customers

A fractional CMO can assist you in identifying who your target audience is and in strategizing the most effective methods to interact with them and encourage them to go through your sales funnel.

A new point of view

Fractional CMOs will look at your present marketing efforts with fresh eyes and come up with new tactics that will assist you in meeting your objectives. They’ll be able to transform your objectives into measurable results based on their understanding of the business and the data.

Develop metric reporting and analysis

After implementing your marketing plan, the fractional CMO will assist you evaluate the results. A fractional CMO can assist you with monitoring the health and development of your campaigns, as well as leading monthly KPI meetings.

Help with long-term objectives

Fractional CMOs will also assist you in identifying and analyzing your company’s strengths and areas for improvement. While they’re assisting you in refining your marketing efforts, they’re also putting you on the proper path for a long-term business plan.

When To Hire A Fractional CMO

Partnering with a fractional CMO is highly recommended if you are experiencing one or more of the problems listed below:

  • You have tried a variety of marketing strategies, but none of them have been successful. 
  • Your sales and marketing teams aren’t aligned. Your teams may need clear leadership.
  • Your marketing department doesn’t know how to deal with changes in the market or new projects.
  • Tossing your money in the trash because you are trying out a lot of unproven marketing ideas.
  • You lack essential resources and the inappropriate talent in-house.
  • You have the proper people but the incorrect marketing strategy.
  • Your marketing isn’t uniform across all of your channels.
  • Your company currently isn’t competitive enough to compete on a larger scale and you plan to bring your organization up to this level.

Why It Works

Fractional CMOs work because they have experience in the field. They’ve experienced the highs and lows that are associated with a certain period of a company’s development. Consequently, they are more prepared to deal with events that may arise, and they are able to concentrate their efforts on producing the outcomes that are required to help the company expand.

The fact that fractional CMOs are often hired to provide help in the short to medium term saves organizations the expense of recruiting and training an in-house CMO, as well as the additional costs of benefits and bonus payments. Organizations may get started on establishing their marketing department almost immediately with the help of a fractional CMO.

Companies that cannot afford a full-time CMO often attempt to put together their marketing plan, which may soon devolve into chaos and incoherence. A fractional CMO can integrate your marketing plan, get third-party partners on the same page, and ensure marketing strategy accountability.

One of the objectives of the fractional CMO is to develop a strategy that is scalable. Marketers are obsessed with scaling their businesses—creating a plan that will provide predictable, consistent growth.

Although a fractional CMO comes on board for a brief time, the advantages continue. Fractional CMO have a long-term execution plan that outlasts their contract. For example, the marketing team may continue to use best practices and standard operating procedures even after the Fractional CMO has left.

Considerations When Working With A Fractional CMO

Don’t hire right away after you decide this is your next step. Prior to beginning the hiring process, keep the following considerations in mind: 

Identify your budget and requirements

Your budget will ultimately determine what services a fractional CMO can provide. After determining your budget for a part-time employment, you must determine your needs and requirements. If you have a tight budget, you’ll need to streamline your tasks to ensure you obtain assistance with the essentials.

Assess your organization’s needs 

Some questions to ask are: What are the current objectives and marketing strategy of your company? Does your marketing department require reorganization? Any areas for improvement or failure? Do you need help with analytics or digital management?

Identify marketing gaps 

Be on the lookout for confusing or obsolete procedures, vague objectives and projects. Identify target markets and revenue shortfalls. Knowing your marketing department’s issues can help you identify the ideal individuals fit for the job.

Stakeholders’ needs should be communicated 

Ask your CFO, VP of Sales, and HR director what they require from the fractional CMO. Early involvement may assist unify objectives, interview processes, and expectations from the fractional CMO.

Look into your options 

Not every fractional CMO will be a good match for your demands or be within your financial budget range. Take your time, do your research, and analyze all of your options by reading online reviews.

Difference Between Hiring A Fractional CMO And Other Marketing Options

Here’s a comparison of some of the most popular options that businesses consider when wanting to boost their marketing.

Full-time Chief Marketing Officer – A full-time CMO can give all of the advantages that a fractional CMO can deliver. The most significant disadvantage is the cost. Paying medical insurance, bonus, and perks for this highly qualified position is a significant financial commitment.

In house marketing – An in-house marketing director may establish marketing strategy, coordinate campaigns, and manage budgets. Hiring a fractional CMO, on the other hand, may be the best option for tasks like analytics and digital management.

Marketing Consultants – Marketing consultants are often hired from outside your company and provide their advice to the person in charge of your team. A marketing consultant may have C-level knowledge to share but they almost certainly use a customized, untested procedure.

Traditional Marketing Agency – It is very common for businesses to start to work with traditional marketing agencies as they grow to establish marketing channels. This might mean seeking out an SEO firm or Facebook ad agency. This can certainly work. However, the challenge can come with there being a lack of a holistic view of marketing that a fractional CMO could bring. It’s important to be able to understand what channels bring the greatest growth and be ahead of the curve on competitors when those strategies and platforms lose their effectiveness. Furthermore, world class marketing channel set up involves integrating multiple marketing channels to work together. For example, facebook ads might generate one’s initial leads but an opportunity is missed not setting up retargeting ads on google and youtube along with email marketing drip campaigns. Larger organizations tend to do this and there’s no reason why an organization growing into one cannot take advantage of these best practices. A fractional CMO can help do this at an earlier stage. 

How To Find The Right Fractional CMO For You

Do your research – You may seek recommendations from colleagues and business partners, explore freelancing websites, publish job advertisements on platforms such as Indeed or LinkedIn, and/or do a  Google search.

Examine the track record – You’ll want to see evidence that a fractional CMO can deliver on their claims. Ask about their previous and relevant experience, look at their portfolio and check past clients’ referrals. Verify all details to guarantee their track record is strong.

Check marketing techniques – A good fractional CMO for your company will know not just marketing strategy, but also which marketing strategies will perform best for your company. They may thus not only develop marketing strategy but also monitor the implementation.

How Much Does A Fractional CMO Cost?

When compared to employing a full-time CMO, the most significant benefit of hiring a Fractional CMO is that it is far more cost-effective in the long run. The pay rates for fractional CMOs may differ.

Glassdoor estimates that full-time CMOs in the United States earn between $73,000 and $306,000 per year, with the typical CMO earning $174,371. Additionally, you may be required to pay for full-time workers’ benefits, bonuses, 401(k) plans, payroll taxes, and other related expenses.

Fractional CMO, on the other hand, is estimated to cost roughly $249 per hour, according to Glassdoor. This has the potential to save you a lot of money. In order to meet your company’s demands, a fractional CMO may be employed on a project basis for as many or as few hours as required.

The hourly rate for a fractional CMO with prior experience heading a very big or public firm is $400 to 600 dollars per hour. Meanwhile, a fractional CMO with prior experience heading a SME may be hired for between $200 and $350 per hour.

Are you ready to discuss how a fractional CMO may help your business achieve maximum growth in the shortest amount of time? Arrange a consultation with us and find the fractional CMO that is most appropriate for your needs. 

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