Fractional CMOs + Agencies

Test. Learn. Grow. podcast image

Test Data

Related Industries
Related Capabilities
  • Strategy & Consulting

In our latest episode of Test. Learn. Grow., our hosts are joined by Level Agency’s President, Patrick Patterson, and Chief Outsiders’ CMO and Managing Partner, Slade Kobran. Listen as they discuss the benefits of partnering with a fractional Chief Marketing Officer or Marketing Agency to achieve revenue growth, profitability, and scalability. 

Rather listen than read? Check out Episode 50 of the Test. Learn. Grow. Podcast to hear how your business can breakthrough to new heights with the partnership of a Chief Outsider. Visit their website to learn more:  


What is Chief Outsiders? 

Chief Outsiders is an organization that provides the opportunity for businesses who are looking to grow with the support of a Chief Marketing Officer (CMO) but may not yet be in the position to employ one on a full-time basis. Chief Outsiders matches your business with one of their 115 fractional CMOs (otherwise known as part-time CMO) to provide a strategic and disciplined marketing perspective, grounded in years of business acumen and experience.  

A fractional CMO is best suited to support companies where there is a strategic growth opportunity, as Slade describes it – “enough meet on the bone,” whether that be to scale a business to the next level, or to help reverse a decline in business growth. 

Laying the Foundation for Boots on the Ground 

You may be asking yourself – When would I need to bring in a CMO vs. engaging an external marketing agency like Level Agency? 

A helpful way to think about the difference between a CMO and a marketing agency is to think about the differing roles between an engineer and builders.  

A CMO, working closely with the CEO, will plan a strategic roadmap for the company’s growth through its marketing efforts. This is achieved with a disciplined approach to understanding the company’s core values/offerings, then planning how best to communicate with and convert clients into long-term valued relationships. During that process, enlisting support for the business with an external marketing agency, like Level Agency, will provide the ‘boots on the ground’ who are critical for the success of building out that strategic plan.  

Further to this, much like an engineer, a CMO provides a strong voice inside the organization, laying out the overall marketing/business strategy, which in turn gives an external marketing agency clear direction – making their function significantly more productive.  
Other value-adds of a fractional CMO include: 

Knowing When and How to Bring in the Right People and Partners.  

Having an experienced leader at the helm to advise whether an organization needs to engage an external marketing agency, like Level Agency, or whether they need to restructure existing resources and focus on improving internal operating rhythms. A Chief Outsider will know, through years of experience, what to look for and how to vet certain resources (individuals or partnerships) should they need to be onboarded. 

Getting from Point A to Point W 

A fractional CMO can help a business to grow in an accelerated manner, working closely with senior staff and leadership for an agreed-upon time period (6, 12, 18 months) to set up the foundation for their marketing strategy, as well as the right people/operations to keep the strategy running long after the CMO is no longer part of the organization. As Slate notes, while a business may have a great marketing team that already ‘gets a lot done…,’  
“…they may not be making a meaningful impact on the growth of the business, and that is what good marketing organizations need to do. It is not just to get things done – because you still need to get things done of course- but instead, they should be getting the things done that are purposefully driving the business forward in a more predictable rhythm of revenue generation”  

While it is possible for the organization to build up the strategy and resources yourself from within, it becomes a matter of time and effort, as Level Agency President, Patrick Patterson comments – it is about deciding “how many times do I want to fail? Versus bringing in someone who has already failed a bunch.”  

Featured Perspectives

Our latest thoughts, ideas, and approaches.