The Top Qualities of a Successful Fractional CMO

There are a range of reasons you might decide to hire a fractional CMO for your business. Maybe you have huge growth plans and need an expert to plan your marketing strategy, or maybe you’re just looking for someone to get the ball rolling in your marketing department. 

Either way, you want to be sure you’re hiring an experienced marketing professional that possesses a unique skill set to help you achieve your business objectives. To aid in your search for the perfect recruit, here are the top qualities of a successful fractional CMO – with a quick definition of what a fractional CMO is.

Get More Sales with Julia

Tired of wasting time and money on marketing. Let Julia help you get the sales revenue you deserve and make your marketing work harder.

Schedule a Consultation Today

What is a fractional CMO?


A fractional CMO – or fractional Chief Marketing Officer – is an experienced marketing executive brought in to work as a contractor on a part-time basis to help an organization elevate their marketing campaigns.

9 top qualities of a successful fractional CMO


Now we’re clear on what exactly a good fractional CMO is, let’s delve into the characteristics they should possess.

1. Strong work ethic

A non-negotiable when it comes to hiring a fractional CMO is that they’re dedicated to their practice and work tirelessly to develop strategies that help you achieve your marketing goals. They should be highly experienced and have consistently delivered positive results.

A quick peruse of their CV and references will tell you if they have the drive and work ethic to succeed in the role.

2. High level of experience

A quality fractional CMO will be experienced executive who have already worked in a number of companies to deliver stellar marketing results. They should know marketing key performance indicators (KPIs) like the back of their hand and have a solid understanding of strengths and weaknesses in a marketing strategy – as well as know what works. While it can be advantageous to hire a fractional CMO that has already worked with companies comparable to yours – i.e. in the same industry or of the same size – the most impressive fractional CMOs will have worked across a range of industries and can tailor their strategies and market research accordingly. Typically, the more broad the range of experience of your fractional CMO, the more adept they are at tailoring a strategy to your unique marketing needs.

3. Excellent communicator

Communication skills are up there as one of the top qualities a successful fractional CEO should possess. This is because they need to liaise with multiple team members, departments and founders – as well as stakeholders. They need to know what questions to ask and how to get answers.

They should also have the tactics for helping you see what’s wrong with your current strategy and how to improve it. Plus, they should be skilled at conveying complex marketing ideas to laypersons, as not everybody on your team will be knowledgeable about marketing.

4. Bring a fresh perspective

One of the main attractions of bringing in a fractional CMO to hone your marketing strategy is that they come with a fresh pair of eyes. They should be able to easily identify areas for improvement – which might not be so clear to those who’ve been in the company a long time. They’re also unbothered by office politics or the noise of daily operations – they’re an outsider there to do a particular job without distractions. This means they have a level of clarity and focus your in-house employees may lack.

5. Shared values

When it comes to hiring a fractional CMO, you should aim to choose someone that matches your company values.

If you’re concerned with conducting business with an environmentally conscious ethos, for example, you might not mesh well with a fractional CMO who prioritizes financial gain over everything else. However, the most successful fractional CMOs will be able to adapt to your company culture and work in line with your values, to ensure you achieve your goals.

6. A good market leader

Having excellent leadership skills is another must-have in a fractional CMO. Whether you have a small team with no dedicated marketing department, or you’re a large firm with a marketing budget and a whole in-house marketing team, the fractional CMO needs to be able to gel with employees and lead with ease, breeding confidence within the team.

7. Understands sales

The best fractional CMOs understand that marketing is inextricable from sales. Your CMO should align themselves with the sales, product and customer success teams, using sales data to inform a successful marketing strategy.

8. A lifelong learner attitude

While you want your fractional CMO to have plenty of experience under their belt, a know-it-all attitude is a red flag. The best CMOs know that they always have something to learn and thrive off new challenges.

9. Honesty and humility

This is a big one. The CMOs at the top of their game know when to admit when they made a mistake – and learn from it. They will also never promise anything they can’t deliver on when it comes to their marketing strategies, and will communicate clear and transparent expectations from the get-go. Every great fractional CMO has a track-record of success, is a strong leader, can communicate effectively and delivers on their word. To achieve your maximum marketing potential as a company, make sure you seek out a fractional CMO who meets all of the above criteria.

Get More Sales with Julia

Tired of wasting time and money on marketing. Let Julia help you get the sales revenue you deserve and make your marketing work harder.

Schedule a Consultation Today



Enjoying this article?

Subscribe to our newsletter to get more just like it, sent straight to your inbox.

[newsletter_form type="minimal"]
By subscribing, you consent for xxxx to store your details and email you our newsletter and latest updates. You can unsubscribe at any time. Privacy policy.
Scroll to Top