Fractional means that multiple non-competing companies share me as their Chief Marketing Officer (CMO). Typically, this means I'm engaging with your company and marketing team once or twice per week.
Here are four scenarios that warrant a fractional CMO:
1. If your company has an existing marketing team that needs executive leadership and guidance.
2. You have an early stage start up and you need to execute an aggressive go-to-market strategy to show revenue traction and early growth.
3. Your company needs a stop-gap (temporary) marketing leader while you locate and sign a permanent VP of Marketing or CMO.
4. Your company needs an experienced marketing leader to define key marketing roles and build an in-house marketing team. Or a combo of agency partners and an in-house marketing team.
There are many benefits to a fractional CMO; however, here are the top three:
1. Cost savings: The average salary of CMOs in New York and the Silicon Valley is $218,571. In Vancouver, the average is $160,000. And, this is before benefits, options and perks such as 401k or RRSP matching. Hiring a fractional CMO gives you the benefit from having an executive level marketing expert at 1/5 the cost.
2. Fresh perspective: A CMO who serves multiple industries can bring ideas and proven tactics from one industry to another.
3. Focus on growth: The third benefit is less obvious. When I come into your organization once per week I restrict my focus to strategy and growth. After all, you don't need to pay your CMO $218k per year to study your Google Analytics account or write subject lines for your email campaigns.
Product-led growth is a relatively new term that emphasizes the product as the primary driver for customer acquisition. Product-led growth is how SaaS companies like Slack and digital entertainment companies like Netflix became multi-billion dollar empires. If you're not familiar with product-led growth here's a great PDF written by leading SaaS VC firm OpenView: https://bit.ly/2uHjeyx
This is how giants like Slack and Dropbox generate millions of paying subscribers. They don't sell to the IT buyer but rather the end user. And by sell, I'm referring to the delivery of an exceptional user experience that onboards users (and their teams) quickly to solve the buyers pain points.
Rather than force them down a conversion funnel, use strategic content across the entire customer journey to help the user make a sound purchase decision.
I believe that the product should not only meet the marketing promise but exceed it (MailChimp, Slack, Zendesk).
It's not enough to get a credit card transaction or a PO. Marketing is only successful when the customer is happy enough with your product that they evangelize it and refer their friends. Net Promoter Score therefore becomes the lifeline metric and tell-tale of a winning product-market fit.
Your content should educate and entertain prospects, freemium users, and existing customers on both direct and complementary topics. And, this content should be aligned and made available to prospects at all stages of the customer journey.
10 years of running One Net - a digital marketing agency that's still going strong - I've learned the importance of delivering what you promise on time and within budget. Dependencies and underwater variables will always exist. It's my job to set expectations up front, identify risks, and set the critical path to completion all while motivating the team along the way.
I won't work with products unless they solve a critical pain (Slack, Uber, Freshbooks) or provide addictive entertainment value (Spotify, Netflix, Audible). If your product is simply a cheaper clone of your competitors, I'm not interested.
A marketing program is not about churning out creative or marketing assets. It's about generating demand, driving new customers and fueling revenue growth.
Too many compromises along the way degrade the value of marketing and sacrifice growth. If a team member is not performing, I'm quick to reassign them to another role. If a vendor is not delivering, I'm quick to bring in a replacement. If the product is not meeting the marketing promise, I'll pause campaigns until the CX is fixed. I won't deploy campaigns that deceive customers or slander competitors.
Hopefully it goes without saying, but I will not work for competing companies. This includes companies in competition / conflict with my clientele over at One Net Inc. Further, our service agreement will have strong non-compete and non-solicitation clauses to protect you.
As a fractional CMO I dedicate one day per week to your business. This doesn't mean I won't answer calls or emails the other four days of the week. It simply means I pick one day and commit 100% of my undivided focus to your growing your business.
Need me to use a branded email address? No problem. You can even add me to your phone directory. If we agree to work together, it means I believe in your company and product. I will become a core member of your executive team.
I invoice monthly on a pre-paid basis. I do not work on an hourly rate. I charge all clients the same flat fee of $2,500 USD per month which gives you one full day per week of my undivided attention. Please see the "Pricing" tab for more details.
My vacation dates will always be discussed with your executive team far in advance. I will not leave for vacation during a product launch or a critical company event. I will make up all days missed for vacation or sickness.
This is a common problem for early stage start ups. Good marketing talent is difficult to find and retain. I'll help you craft job descriptions and hire for in-house positions. Or, I'll help you identify agency and freelance partners to fill immediate voids in your marketing roster. I have an extensive network of vendors and resumes to get the ball rolling. I can help you build a marketing team after I implement sprint 1 of my CMO framework and our analytics are in place.
I am willing to get my hands dirty to setup analytics, launch ad campaigns, update your site and ensure your email autoresponder sequence is firing correctly. However, my preference is to teach and empower your team to become self-sufficient in these tactical areas. This will allow me to focus on strategy and execution plans related to revenue growth, strengthening your brand and reducing your customer acquisition costs.
If you're located in the greater Victoria area, I'll come to your office one day per week to meet with your team and immerse myself in your culture. If you're not located in the Greater Victoria area, we'll setup remote communications (Appear.in, Slack).
If you're a remote team you're welcome to come to my downtown Victoria office to jam on projects and review the performance of our marketing programs in my full-size board room.
There are 2 reasons why I'm taking on consulting work as a fractional CMO:
1. Over the last 10 years I have built and stabilized my digital agency One Net Inc. I have a great team, repeatable processes, and a roster of repeat clients and a healthy sales pipeline in place. This allows me to step back from the day-to-day of One Net and explore new opportunities with exciting products and teams.
2. The industry trend for tech firms is to bring their core marketing functions in-house. By reading this page, you're likely in this camp. Agencies like One Net Inc will continue to provide tremendous value to marketing departments, however, gone are the days where an agency of records (AOR) drives your entire marketing program. I want to get back into the captain's seat and start driving entire growth programs once again.
I have a Master Service Agreement that we'll refine and negotiate together. The Master Service Agreement includes clauses for the scope of my engagement, non-disclosure, non-compete, non-solicitation, IP, fees and payment terms.
Typically, I start work at 9am Pacific Time (GMT -8) and I work until 5pm. I will adjust or increase work hours if needed to accommodate team members in different time zones.
I will travel for critical meetings such as investor pitches, annual planning sessions with your agency, and corporate retreats. To ensure I'm available for my other CMO commitments, I don't travel for conferences or conventions unless I've been asked to present.
I charge all clients a flat fee of $2,500 USD per month which gives you one day per week of my undivided attention. If you need me for two days per week my fee simply doubles.
I will consider converting overages to options but I will not discount my fee. In other words, if you hire me for one day per week @ $2,500 USD per month but you need more hours, we can negotiate a price on options and I'll simply convert my extra hours to stock options.
Not usually. That said, if you have an interesting start up and you need some preliminary work done to generate investment, or land a big account, I'll consider working for options.
I don't work on an hourly rate basis. Why? Because I don't want to charge you when I wake up in the middle of the night with a brilliant new idea for driving revenue growth : )