How to Land 6-Figure Contracts as a Fractional CMO
Fractional Chief Marketing Officers (CMOs) can have a significant impact on the performance of early-stage ventures. In many cases, their advice can make or break a company. Yet, it is challenging to get founders and CEOs to pay for this invaluable strategic advice. Founders want to pay for production and distribution. So, if you're going to land bigger projects as a fractional, you need to add fulfillment services to your arsenal of offerings.
The challenge is that managing marketing operations and distribution requires more than a solo fractional executive. It requires a team with many skills to execute properly. But hiring means overhead, and that means risk for you. If you hire a team but don’t have enough work to pay for them, you’re stuck with the bill. Not to mention the time it takes to find and hire reliable talent.
How do you pitch like an agency without actually building an agency?
Most fractionals turn to contractors. They try to find reliable professionals with niche skill sets using their network or platforms like Upwork. They may hire a contractor but later discover that they can’t deliver on time or aren’t as skilled as they claimed, making the search process long and tedious. On top of that, the more talented contractors end up getting busy with other clients and don’t have time to take on your projects.
Finally, as you build out a team of reliable contractors, you discover the next challenge: coordination. You spend most of your time coordinating communication between disconnected vendors instead of focusing on strategy.
An alternative approach designed with fractional executives in mind must exist.
4 Requirements for a Fractional Partner Program
As a fractional CMO, how can you offer more than tactical support and become a strategic partner? How can you provide end-to-end services while facing the challenges of coordinating vendors and contractors? Here are four requirements:
1. Your team must be autonomous
Fractionals cannot be the communication bottleneck. Your team must be able to work together and interface directly with stakeholders to ensure that initiatives move quickly and effectively. Free up your time to focus on go-to-market strategy and deliver success for your client.
2. Partners must offer flexible engagement models
Agencies often use retainer-based agreements to lock in recurring business. But if your clients decide to change their strategy in 90 days, you could be left with a hefty bill. Experts you partner with must understand this if they will help you fulfill your strategic vision. They must offer you the services you need when needed, and only for as long as you need them.
Having flexible agreements gives you the agility to provide the client with what is best for them and not be limited by what is in your contract.
3. End-to-end service offering
It is worthless to have an autonomous and flexible team if it can’t be integrated. That means your fulfillment partner must offer a full spectrum of services for you to choose from and have the infrastructure to quickly hire those skill sets if they don’t currently have them for a specific job. You should never be bogged down with tedious interview processes when your time is better spent on strategy.
4. Technology & data expertise are essential
Marketing relies heavily on technology, automation, and data analytics. Building a marketing organization today is more like building a product team than a sales team. Without these skillsets, there is no hope of conducting proper operations for market or business intelligence. Often, companies turn to niche vendors for these technological challenges, but they lack a fundamental understanding of marketing and don’t execute effectively.
OneForce: The Marketing Cloud for Fractional CMOs
Just as IT and data centers transitioned to cloud-based services like AWS, marketing is now moving to a holistic and highly automated cloud service. This allows fractional CMOs to tap into productized, shared marketing services on-demand instead of building in-house agencies.
OneForce provides fractional CMOs access to a full range of marketing services, technology, data, and experts. We solve the challenges of fragmented systems, staff, and solutions.
As a Marketing Cloud, OneForce offers:
- End-to-End Capabilities: From strategic planning to tactical execution across all marketing channels and content.
- Enterprise Technology: Marketing software, automation, and analytics without the enterprise price tag.
- Specialized Talent: On-demand access to deployed teams of expert strategists, creatives, technicians, and data analysts.
- Unified Data: Centralized data, reporting, and tracking across all programs for optimized results.
- Scalability: Rapid scaling up or down depending on your needs..
By leveraging OneForce as your marketing cloud, you can confidently deliver full-scope marketing services and strategic counsel typically delivered by major agencies. Our marketing cloud model is the future for fractional marketing executives.
Case Study: Scaling a Professional Services Firm
OneForce recently delivered end-to-end marketing services for a fractional CMO engaged with a company specializing in tax credit services. The company brought in the fractional CMO to develop its partner referral program and core outreach capabilities. By partnering with OneForce, the fractional CMO scaled lead generation for this firm within 6 months.
- Increased by 100 new qualified leads per month
- $2 million in new monthly revenue
- Expanded referral partner network
- Increased brand awareness
This was achieved through an integrated strategy encompassing market positioning, messaging, content marketing, sales enablement, automation, and analytics. The fractional CMO acted as a true partner in strategically transforming the company’s marketing and sales. The result was significant growth in new clients and revenue that outstripped prior performance.
This case study demonstrates how today's fractional CMOs can deliver end-to-end services and drive substantial outcomes, rivaling traditional marketing agencies. With the right approach, fractional CMOs can become strategic assets to their clients.