The reset created by the pandemic caused many smaller businesses to rethink how they approach essential functions. CEOs of SMBs frequently lead every function, or certainly go-to-market functions. Many CEOs find it attractive to engage a fractional CMO to chart strategy and develop plans to elevate marketing efforts to produce greater demand. Today, we take a deeper look at this role to help you assess if it is a good fit for your business.
What is a Fractional CMO?
A fractional CMO (Chief Marketing Officer) is a senior-level executive who partners with businesses on a consultative basis, providing advice and guidance as needed. This model has become increasingly popular in recent years as companies look for cost-effective ways to access the skills and experience of a seasoned marketing executive.
A fractional CMO can be especially beneficial for small businesses. Using this model can bring a fresh perspective to an organization and provide objective insights into the company’s marketing efforts.
What does a fractional CMO do?
A fractional CMO reviews existing marketing and provide planning and strategy to improve it. The perspective of an experienced marketing executive is often needed to perform a marketing reset. CMOs usually are connected to a network of resources to help companies execute these plans and strategies.
Why try the fractional CMO model?
A fractional CMO can be beneficial for businesses that do not have the resources to hire a full-time CMO or for companies undergoing a transition period. This business model can bring a wealth of experience and expertise to a company and provide an essential outside perspective. A fractional CMO can provide guidance and support during periods of change, helping to ensure that the company’s marketing efforts align with the overall business strategy. As a result, businesses that use this model can benefit from greater clarity, focus, and efficiency in their marketing efforts.
When should a business consider a Virtual CMO?
When it comes to marketing, one size does not fit all. The needs of each business are unique, and the marketing strategy should reflect those needs. For some companies, that means working with a full-time marketing team. However, there are certain situations where a fractional CMO may be a better option.
First and foremost, businesses should consider a fractional CMO when they do not have the budget for a full-time marketing team. A fractional CMO can provide the same level of expertise and experience as a full-time CMO but at a fraction of the cost. This role can benefit small businesses or startups working with limited resources.
Another situation where this model may be beneficial is when a business is going through a period of change. Whether it’s a rebranding effort, the launch of a new product, or simply a shift in strategy, a fractional CMO can provide the flexibility and agility needed to navigate these changes successfully.
Ultimately, whether or not to work with a fractional CMO depends on the individual needs of each business. However, this model may be the ideal solution for companies working with limited budgets or navigating periods of change.
What does a Fractional CMO cost?
A fractional CMO will charge an hourly rate or a monthly retainer. The average hourly rate for a part-time CMO is $200-$300 per hour, and the average monthly retainer for this role is anywhere from $2,500 to $10,000 per month. However, depending on the CMO’s experience and geographic location, this rate can vary significantly. The exact cost will depend on the scope of the engagement and the level of expertise of the CMO.
While this may seem like a significant investment, it is essential to remember that a CMO can provide a tremendous return on investment by helping you to reach your target market, achieve your sales goals, and grow your business. In many cases, fractional CMOs can also provide their services at a lower cost than full-time CMO because they do not require benefits or other overhead costs. As a result, using this business model can be an excellent way to benefit from experienced marketing leadership without breaking the bank.
Who should consider this role?
Deciding whether or not to hire a fractional CMO is a big decision for any business. After all, the Chief Marketing Officer is responsible for developing and executing the marketing strategy, and they play a vital role in the company’s growth.
Determine the scope of the project and the CMO’s level of involvement. For instance, you may only need help with strategy development or someone who can take on a more hands-on role. Consider the CMO’s area of expertise. Make sure to choose someone whose experience matches the business’ needs and someone with experience in your industry.
Consider your marketing budget. Be sure to clearly understand the CMO’s fee structure before making any commitments. This business model can be a great option if you want to get more bang for your buck, but they are still a significant commitment.
You also need to think about your company’s long-term goals. If you’re looking to rebrand, launch a new product or service, or make a significant market push hiring a fractional CMO can help you achieve these goals.
In short, there’s no one-size-fits-all answer to this question, and it all depends on the specific needs of your business. If you’re unsure whether this business model is right for your company, consider talking to one to see if they could be a good fit.