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Yes, a Fractional CMO costs Less. And it doesn’t end there.

Comparing Full Time vs. Part Time CMO options.

Hiring a full-time CMO in North America doesn’t come cheap. We’re talking about a hefty price tag, ranging from $200,000 to $300,000 annually, plus benefits. 

And that’s just for the CMO alone. When you factor in the cost of a full marketing team to execute those strategies, the cost balloons dramatically..

There’s a smart solution: the Fractional CMO. These marketing leaders offer the same top-notch expertise as their full-time counterparts, but here’s the thing – you only pay for the time you need. 

Just imagine having a marketer on call, ready to guide your business to success, without the hefty price tag of a full-time executive.

Sounds too good to be true, right? Fortunately, the numbers tell us just how cost-effective this option can be.


Full-Time CMO (Monthly)

Fractional CMO (Average Monthly)

Verta as Your Fractional CMO Agency

Avg. Basic Salary

$16,000 – $25,000

$5,000 – $10,000


Avg. Benefits Cost




Cost of Marketing Execution

Not Included

Not Included

Marketing Team Included


Full-Time vs. Fractional CMOs

Cost Breakdown of a Full-time CMO

An in-house CMO doesn’t just cost their salary, they have a multitude of elements in their compensation packages, some of which include: 

  • Basic Annual Salary: The annual salary for a CMO ranges between $200,000 and $300,000. 

This rate changes depending on the experience, industry reputation, and the specific demands of the role. Remember, this is for one individual whose expertise is crucial but costly.

  • Benefits Package: Beyond the salary, you must consider the added expense of benefits. Typically adding another $84,000 annually.

This usually includes comprehensive health insurance, retirement plans and contribution matching, stock options, and generous paid time off. These benefits are essential for attracting top talent but can add an additional 30-40% on top of the salary.

  • Industry Variance: The salary also varies with the industry. High-demand industries like technology and finance often command higher salaries due to the intense competition for top talent. 

And there’s more. A full-time CMO also means considering the cost of the team needed to bring your marketing strategy to life:

  • Social Media Manager: Average Annual Salary: $50,000 to $70,000

Note: Salaries can vary based on factors such as experience, industry, and the scope of responsibilities.

  • Web Developer: Average Annual Salary: $60,000 to $100,000

Note: Salaries can vary based on specialisation (front-end, back-end, full-stack), skills, and experience.

  • Graphic Designer: Average Annual Salary: $45,000 to $60,000

Note: Salaries may vary based on experience, portfolio quality, and the industry.

  • SEO Specialist: Average Annual Salary: $50,000 to $70,000

Note: Salaries can vary depending on the level of expertise, specific responsibilities, and the industry.

  • Paid Media Analyst: Average Annual Salary: $45,000 to $65,000

Note: Salaries can vary based on the complexity of managed campaigns, platforms, and experience.

  • Copywriter: Average Annual Salary: $40,000 to $60,000

Note: Salaries may vary based on industry, the complexity of writing tasks, and experience level.

When these costs are added to a Full-time CMO’s salary, the total can easily exceed up to $600,000 annually.

Different Ways To Hire A Fractional CMO

A fractional CMO offers a more flexible financial commitment. Here’s how:

  • Fixed Commitment/Flat Monthly Fee: With a fractional CMO, you’re looking at a more predictable cost structure. 

You agree on a set number of hours per month which translates into a flat fee. This arrangement ensures budget stability, free from the fluctuations of full-time employment

  • Hourly Basis: For even more flexibility, some fractional CMOs work on an hourly basis. This means you pay only for the time you need, whether it’s a few hours a week or more intensive support during major projects. 

This approach maximises flexibility and cost-effectiveness, especially for businesses with fluctuating marketing needs.

  • Industry Variance: Just like full-time CMOs, the costs for fractional CMOs can vary by industry. However, the rates are generally more competitive due to the nature of their work.

Fractional CMOs often work with multiple clients, spreading their time and expertise across different businesses, which allows for more competitive pricing and shared industry insights.

But it’s not all about saving money. Here’s where Fractional CMOs truly stand out:

  • Unparalleled Flexibility: Need marketing support for a specific project or campaign? 

Engage a Fractional CMO for that specific duration. This level of adaptability is simply not possible with a full-time position.

  • Access to Deep Industry Knowledge: Tap into a network of seasoned marketing experts, each with distinct industry insights, for a fraction of the cost of a full-time hire. 
  • Enhanced Focus for Your Team: Let your in-house team concentrate on core business operations while your Fractional CMO tackles the strategic marketing challenges. This arrangement can lead to improved productivity and operational efficiency.
  • Scalable Support for Business Growth: As your business expands, you can effortlessly increase your engagement with your Fractional CMO. This removes the risks and challenges associated with rapid hiring.
  • Long Term Vision: A CMO brings vision for the organisation’s aspirations. This is often one part of the job, hence making the fractional CMO even more valuable in their expertise to provide this.

Final Word: Why Choose Verta as your Fractional CMO?

With us, you’re not just hiring a CMO; you’re gaining an entire marketing department, ensuring cost-effectiveness, leveraging extensive experience and expertise, and enjoying flexibility and scalability in adapting your strategies to market dynamics without the overhead of a full-time executive.

  • For Startups: We understand the budget constraints and the need for agility. Our fractional CMO services provide startups with high-level marketing guidance and execution support to fuel their growth.
  • For Seasonal Businesses: Our model is perfect for businesses with peak seasons. We can ramp up marketing efforts during your high season and scale back when things are quieter, ensuring optimal budget utilisation.
  • For Project-Based Campaigns: Need focused marketing support for a new product launch or a specific campaign? Our fractional CMO and team can step in, providing the necessary expertise and resources.

Verta Marketing: Our Fractional CMO is Your Entire Marketing Department Packed into One

At Verta Marketing, our fractional CMO service is more than just advisory; it’s a comprehensive solution. Consider the costs of hiring individual marketing team members: a social media manager, web developer, graphic designer, SEO specialist, etc. These can quickly add up to about $600,000 annually in North America. We provide not only a fractional CMO but also a full team for strategy execution. 

Our offering? A complete marketing team, led by an experienced fractional CMO, all for just $11,000 per month (or an hourly rate depending on what you need). You avoid the hidden costs and risks of building and iterating on a marketing team.

With Verta, you get a fully-formed, experienced team ready to execute your strategy and save yourself from the hidden costs and risks associated with building a marketing team from scratch. Reach out to discover how we can enhance your marketing efforts, drive growth, and maximise ROI. 

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