The SaaS (Software-as-a-Service) landscape continues to grow at a projected compound annual growth rate (CAGR) of around 27% from 2020 to 2027. As a result, B2B SaaS businesses find themselves in an increasingly competitive market, and one of the most effective ways to get ahead is to leverage the skills and expertise of the gigCMO Fractional Chief Marketing Officer (Fractional CMO) service to develop an effective marketing strategy plan.
The Roles of a Fractional CMO in a B2B SaaS Startup
A Fractional CMO brings a wealth of marketing consultant experience and expertise to a B2B SaaS business. In practical terms, however, what does that look like, and what benefits can they provide?
Defining strategic direction
The first thing that a Fractional CMO can do is define a clear direction for your enterprise, whether it's a scale-up or an established business. This will align with your business objectives and consider everything from your SaaS marketing strategy to your brand positioning, messaging, demand generation and customer retention.
Brand development and positioning
Building a strong brand is essential to driving demand and instilling trust in your customers. A Fractional CMO will ensure all the necessary research is done so that you truly understand your customers and your target customers, building a brand that resonates with them and links with their values. This will ultimately drive conversions and revenue but will also be instrumental for customer retention.
Driving demand generation
A Fractional CMO is a bottom-line-driven marketing consultant, who ties your marketing strategy inextricably to your sales generation in a highly targeted approach. They seek to attract and engage with high-intent prospects, optimising the marketing funnel to increase revenue.
Enhancing customer experience and retention
In addition to driving sales, the Fractional CMO's SaaS marketing strategy will seek to retain customers, develop a cumulative customer base and build your reputation. That hinges heavily on customer experience, which needs to be monitored, designed and reviewed from the start but constantly reassessed and adjusted in response to relevant and appropriate data that helps you understand customer behaviour and troubleshoot to reduce customer pain points.
Mentoring the marketing team
A Fractional CMO doesn't just seek to inform your SaaS marketing strategy, but to impart their marketing expert knowledge to help your team develop its skills and capabilities. They will help to build a strong marketing culture within your organisation, providing on-the-job mentoring to help your business thrive.
Navigating market changes
Change, and your ability to evolve with it are fundamental to the B2B SaaS market. A Fractional CMO will use their experience to ensure you have the foundation knowledge and ongoing capabilities to understand your customers and competitors and identify significant opportunities to keep your marketing strategy relevant and effective.
Providing cost-effective leadership
A full-time CMO can provide all these things, but a Fractional CMO offers even more significant benefits in their ability to bring an unbiased, outside perspective and deliver on this essential strategic guidance at a fraction of the cost of a full-time executive. In particular, gigCMO's Fractional CMO service gives you the marketing expertise of multiple successful business leaders, brought together in a tried and tested approach that gives you a customised game plan for success.
What does a Fractional CMO for B2B SaaS do?
A Fractional CMO is always a great addition to a company, offering insights and experience that will help focus the business on commercial success. In practical terms, that includes the following tasks:
Create your marketing strategy
Your Fractional CMO will lead in creating and implementing an informed marketing strategy plan based on market research, competitor analyses and your key objectives. This will include delivering marketing qualified leads (MQLs) to sales from marketing, defining your serviceable obtainable market (SOM) within your ideal customer profile (ICP), as well as driving brand awareness.
Correct your messaging and positioning
Within your marketing strategy and informed by critical data, your marketing consultant will help you update brand messaging and positioning across your brand and communications to support customer acquisition and retention.
Create systems for your team to follow
By creating systems for your team to follow, your Fractional CMO will put your marketing strategy in place but enable your in-house people to action it, learning and evolving as they go. This will ensure that your team become empowered in their knowledge, and that your marketing is driven by experienced expertise and a carefully planned approach. However, it also minimises costs.
Map out your customer journey
Having sought to understand the unique qualities of the B2B SaaS buyer's journey, your Fractional CMO will map your customer journey so that your marketing can be laser-focused on that funnel. This is important for customer acquisition and retention, ensuring that the right people find and buy into your business, reducing churn, improving the onboarding process, increasing the Average Revenue Per User (ARPU), and lowering your Customer Acquisition Cost (CAC).
Deploy marketing strategy and lead sprints
Once the marketing plan is in place, your Fractional CMO will oversee the deployment and running of marketing projects, holding the proverbial hand of your team as they make it happen. This will ensure that the marketing strategy is executed according to plan and provide your team with valuable learning opportunities to empower them to be more independent. The Fractional CMO will monitor marketing sprints for key learnings, which will then feed into the next stage of the strategy.
Manage KPIs (Key Performance Indicators) so marketing makes you money
A Fractional CMO's mindset is to be laser-focused on tying marketing efforts with sales KPIs and ultimately increase brand revenue through strategic marketing. This is especially important for SaaS businesses, which are generally hyper-focused on bottom-line KPIs. While we will naturally pay attention to organic metrics, such as keyword position, organic traffic, and backlinks acquired, our primary focus will be the hard numbers showing a real, measurable impact. We will set goals from the outset but zero in on metrics, including customer conversion rates, ROI, MQLs, and Monthly Recurring Revenue (MRR) to ensure that the marketing strategy is working for your business and adjusting it where necessary.
Hire marketing employees and vendors to execute
A Fractional CMO doesn't just look at your strategy: they help you grow your team, ensuring you're accessing the best but necessary talent for your needs. They can be instrumental in the recruitment process for team members, freelancers, and any necessary suppliers to develop your ecosystem in the most effective and cost-effective way.
Build your in-house marketing department
A Fractional CMO has a complete overview of what your team wants and needs. Having also been in a position of overseeing recruitment in their own organisations, they will have a keen understanding of the skills and personality traits that are necessary and compatible with a positive and successful working environment. Seeing the growth of your team as an instrumental part of the ongoing success of your marketing strategy, they will work with you to find the talent you need, from defining the job spec at the right time to managing the recruitment process.
Increase company valuation for VCs (Venture Capitalist) and investors
The role of the Fractional CMO is not just to increase the company's success through sales but to see that cumulative growth and a clear plan for development into the future translate into increased company valuation that will appeal to investors and venture capitalists. Through brand recognition, alongside tangible evidence on the balance sheet, they will work with you to make your business a commercial success and one that investors want to be a part of if or when you choose to go down that path.
gigCMO provides a Fractional CMO service that delivers all of the benefits of a Fractional CMO but supercharges those capabilities with the strength of multiple talents and a tried and tested framework that hinges on proven methodologies. We're experienced in helping SaaS businesses go from scale-up to established entity through strategic marketing tied to brand value and bottom-line-driven KPIs.
Improve your B2B Marketing in your SaaS Company with gigCMO