March 23, 2023

Fractional CMO vs. Strategic Advisor: what's the difference?

What's the difference between a fractional chief marketing officer and a strategic advisor?

The easy answer is time, commitment and money.

A fractional CMO is a part-time employee who works one to three days a week. They're an integrated part of your leadership team.

They regularly engage with multiple key stakeholders, oversee marketing strategy and tactics, and manage third-party suppliers.

Ultimately, they're responsible for how marketing performs and outcomes (leads and sales)

A strategic advisor is a consultant who delivers ideas, guidance, and recommendations.

They usually engage with one or two people (e.g. the CEO and head of marketing), hold weekly update meetings, and tackle problems and assignments when needed.

The commitment can range from five to 25 hours a month, depending on how much their expertise is needed and the amount of work involved.

They can handle four to six clients monthly, while a fractional CMO can work with one or two clients.

At a high level, a company should hire a fractional CMO when there is a leadership gap. There is a lot to work to be done it needs to happen quickly to drive growth.

A strategic advisory can focus on specific areas - e.g. go-to-market plans, positioning, messaging, content marketing, ABM, etc.

I have focused on strategic advisory engagements in my consulting business because it's challenging to run when marketing when you're part-time.

Interesting in learning more about how I can help tackle your marketing challenges? Let's talk.

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