Frequently Asked Questions
Q: Is my CMO Part-time? How many hours per week can I count on him/her?
A: The CMO-as-a-Service is a shared model, not Part-Time. Your CMO is available 7 days per week, 24/7. We typically only have one customer that a CMO is starting an engagement with at-a-time. This allows your CMO to focus all their attention on building the team and marketing foundation. As the team gets going the engagement will become less hands-on.
Q: What does a typical workweek or workday for a Fractional-, or Shared CMO look like?
A: This article describes the work for a Part-time SaaS CMO. It's an overview that will be different per engagement, but gives a good initial indication.
Q: I'm worried about hiring a "mercenary" vs. someone who will grow with my team and is vested in long term success of my company. How does your model address this?
A: The average tenure of CMOs with B2B SaaS companies under $50M ARR is between 8-18 months. The reality is that it's very hard to count on people or companies for long term commitment in today's employer/employee relationship. Equity based compensation with longer vesting schedules can help with this, but for that to be meaning-full it can get expensive. Our shared CMO can stay with you for many years as long as there is a good fit. We also see that the type of marketing leadership needs for your company can change dramatically over time, so it's hard to know what you exactly need now, and it is hard to assess if you hire someone today if that is still the right CMO say 2-3 years from now.
Q: Can I announce my new CMO-as-a-Service publicly as "my" CMO? Can I send out a press release?
A: Yes, your CMO is a "real CMO" who is on your leadership team, and officially able to represent your company. By all means let's get the word out!
Q: Will my CMO work onsite, together with my team?
A: Your CMO will meet your team early in the engagement, and be onsite at least quarterly. In addition, your CMO will join your critical leadership team meetings, like a strategy planning session.
Most of the work will be done remote though. We have found that building a virtual team works very well for SaaS Marketing Teams. Using modern technologies like Zoom Video Meetings and planning tools like Trello help a team be very focused on the work. In team meetings, everyone will use video to ensure maximum, focused participation. More on the best practices we use are described in Jason Fried's book, REMOTE, where he describes how his team build some of the most successfully SaaS companies like Basecamp, High-rise and 37signals using 100% remote teams.
Q: Is my CMO part of me Management Team? Will my CMO join me for critical executive engagements like meetings with our Board of Directors?
A: Yes, your CMO is a "normal" CMO who you can count on to be 100% part of your executive team, including all the obligations that come with that expectation. They can be presented on your website, participate in your leadership team meetings, and even board meetings as appropriate.
Q: What does the start of the engagement look like?
A: An announcement of the new CMO to the team and the organization usually goes hand in hand with personal meetings with all team members and key stakeholders. The CMO will also meet early with all members of the Executive Team. If possible, we try to schedule at least an initial visit on-site to meet the team in person. This can be done regularly if appropriate, for example as part of quarterly leadership team meetings.
Q: Do you manage vendors or bring them in?
A: We are not an agency and don't make money by placing other resources then our own CMOs. We do however hire agencies and external resources on your behalf to work with your team. The billing relationship will always be between you and the vendor, and our CMO will act as a member of you staff managing the vendors and contractors that get hired.
Q: How long do you usually stay with one firm?
A: There is no standard length for an engagement. To have maximum impact a 6-12 month engagement is a good minimum. It's very possible to hire our CMOs for many years and keep adjusting the engagement to the needs of your company as they evolve.
Q: What email will you use?
A: Our CMO acts as an ordinary employee of your company. This includes using an email address with your company identity, and being presented as your CMO on for example your website.
Q: Do you hire/fire?
A: Yes. Our CMO acts as if they would be a normal staff member on your team, and manage the marketing function completely, including making personnel decisions.
Q: Do you take vacation?
A: Our CMOs take vacation just like anyone else. The retainer will be adjusted and you don't pay for their vacation. Timing will always be done in good colaboration with the rest of the executive team, and follow the same policies that apply to everyone else in your company.
Q: Do other CMOs help out?
A: Yes. The power of our team is the broad set of experiences, and deep competency in specific industries, marketing specialties and business models. Our CMOs lean on each-other and team up to provide significant more value to your business then they could do on their own.
Q: Do you accept an opportunity to earn equity in my company as payment?
A: Yes, we are open to discussing any form of pay-for-performance. As long as we can connect our work to the outcomes we feel comfortable to "bleed and feast" with you.