What Is the True Cost of a Fractional CMO?

According to glassdoor.com, the average base salary of a CMO is $179,126 per year. Of course, this number applies to new CMOs with less experience than you might want for the person you hire to oversee your company’s growth. Once you consider that number plus the cost of benefits and incentives, you’re looking at a significant salary.

Read on as we explain the difference between traditional CMOs and fractional CMOs and why you might need one of them for your business.

What Is the Difference Between a Traditional CMO and a Fractional CMO?

Traditional CMO

Traditional CMOs (Chief Marketing Officer) are marketing professionals who are a part of a company’s executive team and lead the marketing department. They head up the marketing team and oversee all things marketing/advertising, PR, market research, branding, pricing, and customer satisfaction.  

Traditionally, CMOs are full-time, executive positions with a salary, benefits, and bonus package.

Fractional CMO

More recently, companies have been taking on fractional CMOs in lieu of a traditional, full-time executive.

Fractional CMOs are more like a contracted CMO who charges a retainer for their services. You can work together on a marketing growth plan with your fractional CMO, and they will then execute those strategies based on a specified time frame. This flexibility allows companies to grow with the expertise of a marketing leader without the full-time expense of an in-house CMO.

How Much Will Hiring a Fractional CMO Cost My Business?

Because of the nature of a fractional CMO being a part-time employee who averages about 40 hours in a month, they will not make as much as a full-time, in-house CMO. A Fractional CMO will usually charge an hourly rate of $200-$300, so you can expect to budget as much for their services depending on the contract time.

If you plan to hire them on for a year, that comes out to $104,000 – $156,000.

What Types of Businesses Need a CMO?

Not every business needs to hire a traditional CMO. This is a full-time salaried position, which means that a company should strongly consider their needs before taking on that type of long-term expense.

If you have a marketing department with several team members but a tight budget, you may not want to take on an expensive contract for a full time CMO.

The companies who need a CMO usually have the following characteristics.

A Traditional Organizational Structure

Of course, this means that your company follows a corporate top-down hierarchy among your staff. This means that each department has its own structure, so a CMO would make sense as someone who can streamline your marketing department.

A Specific Business Model

If you have a targeted business plan in place and you know where you want to see your company in five, ten, and twenty years down the road, then a strong marketing department is essential to meeting your goals. Don’t underestimate the importance of marketing experts on your team. 

A Marketing Team

If you already have members of your staff focusing on marketing but there isn’t an organized long-term marketing plan in place, a fractional CMO would be an excellent addition to the team and could serve as a guide, mentor, and leader for the department.

Marketing Groundwork Has Been Laid

Everything that you do within your company to reach your target customers is creating a marketing infrastructure that will need to be continually maintained and updated as things evolve. A CMO leading your marketing team will have the expertise and experience to refine your company’s marketing techniques and continually grow the department.

What Are the Benefits of Hiring a Fractional CMO for My Company?

By now you know that the true benefit of a fractional CMO is the ability to hire them to perform a specific marketing task and meet predetermined growth goals without the long-term commitment of adding a traditional CMO to your corporate staff.

If you own a medium to large sized company and are considering a CMO to streamline your marketing department and create upward growth for your business, you can’t go wrong by bringing on an experienced, results-driven marketing professional.

The many benefits include:

The Creation of a Strategic & Effective Marketing Plan

A fractional CMO will invest their time in understanding what makes your company tick. They will dedicate themselves to knowing the history of your company, its strengths and weaknesses, and staff.

Once they have a firm understanding of who you are and where you want to take your company, they will make specific recommendations on how your marketing team can meet your goals. They will communicate the methods, tactics, budget, and expectations to you and your existing team.

Refocus Your Marketing Infrastructure

The recommendations that your new fractional CMO makes will encompass your entire marketing infrastructure. This means that you should allow for some extra spending outside of simply paying their salary.

This may include additional or re-vamped branding for your products and services, a website redesign or overhaul, and the use of technology that can boost your website and online presence.

The Importance of a Successful Marketing Team

A successful marketing team may be one of the most important investments that you ever make in your company. Without it, revenue will remain stagnant, and you will miss out on growth opportunities that any company needs to move in an upward trajectory, which, of course, is the goal.

By keeping your marketing department staffed with experienced, focused, and driven team members, you can maintain an environment of consistency and growth through effective leadership and innovative marketing techniques.

Whether or not your company would best benefit from a traditional on-staff CMO or a temporary, fractional CMO is a decision to consider based on your existing marketing team, budget, current revenue stream, and long-term goals for your company.

If you just can’t seem to decide which track is best for your business, it’s probably a good choice to opt for a fractional CMO on a trial basis before getting into a long-term commitment by adding a new executive to your team. Sometimes what looks good on paper doesn’t always translate in the job.

If You’re Ready to Hire a Fractional CMO for Your Business, Call Conversion Pipeline

You’ve made the decision that you want to bring in a fractional CMO for your growing business. It’s an excellent choice that you will not regret. If you are ready to boost your company’s bottom line with organized, forward-thinking marketing goals, call Conversion Pipeline today. Our experienced fractional CMOs are here to help you streamline your marketing department. You can call us at 877-877-0542 or contact us online by clicking here