How and when your start-up should hire a CMO

First your start-up finds its feet with a great idea. Then it grows its legs, building a sales pipeline and an experienced team and raising money to support the solution. Soon it will be time to teach those legs to run. To truly take off, your business needs a marketing executive who can join the c-level staff and spark the growth your company needs. But with change happening so rapidly, it can be difficult to tell just when and how to push those legs into a sprint. 

According to Inc.com, the first consideration a company must make before hiring a chief marketing officer is whether it is in the budget. As Miriam Chrisof, founder and principal at JustJump Marketing, told Inc.com, "Funding is always the trigger event to hire more members for a strong leadership team, and VCs often demand additional hires to build out your company's leadership." Hiring a strong CMO who can promote growth will maximize your investors' ROI in your company, so it is often a condition to accepting an investment. 

Another indication your business is ready to leverage the expertise of a c-level marketer is when your brand is in need of development. There is no better complement to a strong product or sales staff than a well-designed brand. As your baseline marketing approach finds success, the stakes for having airtight branding go up. An experienced CMO can drive this branding process by making investments that align with the image of the company as well as serving as a point person between the press and other company executives. 

Once you have determined that your start-up is ready to take on a CMO, it's time to figure out how to hire the candidate who will help your company flourish the most. According to MarketingLand.com, the most successful CMOs: 

  • Are experts at marketing across multiple channels
  • Have a hands-on, technical skill set
  • Tell your brand's story with design in mind
  • Know how to acquire, engage and retain customers during every stage of the selling cycle
  • Make decisions based on measurable data.

Working with a global executive search firm can help your company identify candidates who can add this kind of expert value to your company right away.

Finding people is easy, but finding the RIGHT people is not. YES Partners helps companies FIND the right people – for all company functions, across many industries and globally.

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