6 Reasons Why your Business Needs a Fractional CMO

Marketing is perhaps more critical now than ever. And at some point, your company will need marketing leadership, talent for which doesn’t come cheap at the executive level. However, there’s a way to mitigate the cost of hiring a chief marketing officer (CMO).

The perks of hiring a fractional CMO is that you will save your company a lot of money, and it doesn’t have the same level of commitment as hiring a full-time senior-level CMO. You can bring someone in that’s paid at the junior or mid-level. If you’re a small to mid-sized business and aren’t ready to commit to a full-time CMO, or are not in the financial position to take on that burden, keep reading to learn about six reasons why your business needs a fractional CMO. 

What is a Fractional CMO?

A fractional CMO is someone you hire to come in on a part-time basis, like a freelancer or contractor, to run your marketing team. They don’t have the same time or cost commitment and are not paid benefits. 

A fractional CMO typically works 15-25 hours a week. As they will be working part time, there payment might be equal to a junior level full time employee. However, they’ll be qualified and have the knowledge that a senior-level marketing manager will have—maybe more. You will also have a certain level of commitment that is usually a contract of six months to a year. After that, you can choose to renew it or part ways. So, there’s some level of commitment but not the same as if you hired a full-time senior-level CMO—you’re getting an expert but paying lesser for it. Plus, you’ll work out a schedule that keeps marketing campaigns moving forward. 

A fractional CMO will provide a clear direction for your brand. They’ll know what drives growth by using key performance indicators (KPIs) while adhering to best marketing practices. 

Thomas Barber, Chief Marketing Officer at Magnus Financial Group LLC, says:

“A Fractional CMO relationship can be analogized to renting a home versus owing one. Direct home ownership can come with boundless financial responsibilities and a plethora of unknown risks.  A more prudent option might be to rent in a new setting. Similarly, a fractional CMO relationship allows you to minimize the burdens that come with sourcing, employing, and retaining an experienced full-time marketing team. Additionally, the arrangement can be structured as a properly aligned partnership which empowers you as the renter to choose another home (CMO) if the conditions of contract are not met.  The benefits of home ownership and building equity can still be realized through the reinvestment of the cost savings that a fractional CMO affords to build true enterprise value (equity) in your business (home).” 

6 Reasons to Hire a Fractional CMO: 

Grow Your Business

Hiring a competent CMO will help expand your business. They’ll drive revenue and brand awareness while bringing in the latest marketing strategies that are proven to work. A fractional CMO will provide marketing leadership and help scale your business model to perfection. The marketing world is constantly changing in the digital age, and a CMO will be up to date on the latest trends and be able to figure out what will have the most return on investment (ROI). 

Growth doesn’t happen overnight, and a fractional CMO can help guide your small or mid-level business to new heights. Ignoring the need for a CMO can be deadly to your business’s bottom line. 

Help Your Budget

As mentioned above, hiring a fractional CMO saves money. It will also free up your business to use resources elsewhere to grow in other ways like investing in new technology or expanding your focus audience areas. And remember, marketing campaigns take time, and time is money, so you’ll be able to use the extra funds to keep campaigns running longer. By saving on what you’d pay someone at the executive level; you’ll allow your small to mid-sized business the opportunity to flourish and not have constraints. 

Provide Insight

A fractional CMO will give your business the marketing insight it needs to succeed. They’ll assess what’s working and what’s not. Many small businesses have to run their marketing campaign by the seat of their pants–if they run one at all. 

When you hire a fractional CMO, they’ll most likely have industry connections that your employees don’t have. Not only will they have the proper training and skills to run a marketing department, but they’ll also have the right software and tools needed to make your campaigns run smoothly and successfully. Their objective insight can provide a fresh perspective as someone coming in from the outside. Often when you’re too close to your product or project, you can’t see new opportunities.

Provide Experience and Strategy

A fractional CMO has an advantage over a full-time CMO because they aren’t focused on one company all the time. This gives them a broader perspective and a better understanding of the market. They’ve also been through the trial-and-error process in several different ways. 

Having experience with several companies and industries gives a fractional CMO an advantage that will benefit your business. It also shortens the learning curve since they’ll be widely versed on day one. Finally, they’ll be able to easily customize a marketing campaign that best suits your needs. 

Offers Flexibility

You’ll have much more flexibility by hiring a fractional CMO than a full-time, salaried CMO. Your permanent employees will be able to focus on other tasks that they’re better equipped for. The right fractional CMO will provide your team with the leadership it would get from a full-time CMO. Plus, if things aren’t working out, you can switch directions much easier than if you had to let go of and hire a new full-time executive-level CMO. Remember, most full-time CMOs have a severance package you’ll have to pay if you decide to change directions. With a fractional CMO, you’ll have much more freedom, and your business will be better for it. 

Hiring Process is Much Quicker

If you decided today to hire a full-time CMO, it might take you up to a year or longer to find the right one. You’ll have to hire “headhunters” to search for the right fit, and that takes time. The average tenure of a full-time CMO is about 3.5 years, so the decision can’t be made in haste. On the other hand, you can employ fractional CMOs from an agency that specializes in the process. They have several qualified marketing experts ready for hire much quicker.

What’s the Cost of Hiring a Fractional CMO?

There are three types of fractional CMO services you can choose from. 

Done for You
Done with You
Do It Yourself

You can choose to hire a fractional CMO along with a whole team that does everything for you. That can cost anywhere from $5,000 to $20,000 per month. 

Or, you can choose a service that works with and oversees your team. They take the lead and offer direction and guidance for your in-house team. That service can cost anywhere from $2,000 to $16,000 per month.

Lastly, you can hire a fractional CMO solely to train the team you already have in place. They’ll do monthly workshops and provide one-on-one coaching to bolster your team’s knowledge and effectiveness. For this service, you’ll spend between $2,000 to $15,000 per month. 

Since fractional CMOs have a much faster onboarding process and are paid on more of an hourly -type basis, they tend to bring a quicker ROI, along with being more efficient.  If you’re considering hiring an experienced fractional CMO who values your company, its vision, and ethics then contact us today to get started.

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