How fractional CMOs can help venture-backed startups

Fractional CMOs for venture-backed startups - Stranded

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Part-time chief marketing officers (fractional CMOs) have become increasingly popular in the venture capital and private equity worlds. Fractional CMOs can provide a variety of valuable services to their startup portfolio, including helping them identify their target market, develop effective messaging strategies, and help get their products and services to market faster.

What is a fractional CMO?

Quick definition: A fractional CMO is a marketing executive who works part-time for an organization. Fractional Chief Marketing Officers (part-time CMOs) can be hired on a per-project basis, or they may choose to work with your company on an ongoing basis.

Typical day-to-day responsibilities of a fractional CMO include:

The benefits of using a fractional CMO include:

Cost savings: A full-time CMO salary will cost between $250K-$500K per year, depending on experience level and location. Hiring one person for this amount of money could mean hiring seven other employees instead!

Flexibility: If you're growing rapidly and need help now but don't know if you'll need more support down the line, then hiring someone on as needed basis makes sense for both parties involved.

How does a fractional CMO work for startups?

A fractional CMO is a marketing executive who works with startups to help them grow. They can do this by helping with go-to-market strategy and marketing strategy, as well as working on specific campaigns and projects.

In addition to providing advice and guidance on how best to market your product or service, a fractional CMO will also be able to provide insight into how your competitors are operating their businesses so that you can avoid making the same mistakes they did.

Why do startups need a fractional CMO?

A fractional CMO is a perfect solution for startups. Startups need help with marketing strategy, go-to-market strategy, product marketing, and brand marketing. They also need content creation and distribution services to reach their target audience. Fractional CMOs can provide these services with expertise in all areas of your business--and they'll be able to do it at a lower cost than hiring a full-time employee would cost you!

What does a startup benefit from a fractional CMO instead of just hiring one full-time?

The first benefit of hiring a fractional CMO is that it's more affordable. There are many times when startups need to hire a marketer for specific projects or for longer terms, but don't have the budget to hire one full-time. Fractional CMOs allow startups to get their hands on marketing expertise without breaking the bank.

Next, fractional CMOs are flexible and can work with any kind of budget--from small businesses that have just started up, all the way up to large enterprises with hundreds of employees and millions in sales revenue (or even billions). This flexibility makes them ideal candidates for helping you reach your goals as a startup founder!

Finally, because they're not tied down by strict contracts or long-term commitments like full-time employees would be, they're able to provide greater value at lower costs than if they were working under such constraints; this means higher returns on investment (ROI) overall which translates into better results over time."

What are the drawbacks to using a full-time CMO instead of a fractioned one?

The drawbacks to using a full-time CMO instead of a fractional one are as follows: they're usually more expensive, they're less flexible and adaptable, and they can be less responsive.

Fractional CMOs are typically cheaper than their full-time counterparts because they have fewer responsibilities. They also tend to be more flexible because they don't have all of the same responsibilities as a full-time employee (for example, you won't need them to manage your HR department). Because fractional CEOs only take on projects that interest them personally and professionally, they're able to respond quickly when needed since there's no bureaucracy holding them back from doing so.

Fractional CMOs can help venture-backed startups grow while mitigating financial risk.

Given that most startup investments involve a certain amount of risk, leveraging the expertise of a fractional CMO can help mitigate some of that risk. A fractional CMO can help ensure that the startup is targeting the right market with its message and has an effective marketing plan in place. This type of analysis can be invaluable.

Startups often hire full-time CMOs, but they may not be able to afford one. In this case, a fractional CMO is a good option because they can provide the expertise needed without having to pay for their time in full.


A full-time CMO may not be the right choice for your company, but it's important to consider all of your options before making any decisions. If you're interested in learning more about how fractional chief marketing officers can help your business, schedule a free 30-minute strategy session with us below or click here to learn more about hiring a fractional CMO.

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