The New Importance of the Acting/ Interim CMO


As the pace of business continues to accelerate, having the right marketing leader in place—one who understands how to leverage the strategic potential of the new tactics at their disposal—confers distinct advantages.

The advent of new technologies and techniques for generating, tracking, nurturing and closing leads has precipitated dramatic changes across all global marketing functions. But finding the right fit takes a comprehensive search, significant recruiting resources and frequently a great deal more time than initially anticipated; many Chief Marketing Officer searches slated to take a month or two stretch six months or even longer. In an environment where being first to market can mean the difference between being the leader or an also-ran, businesses just can’t afford to have an empty CMO seat. That’s why BrandCulture has created the Acting/Interim CMO program—an offering that leverages a comprehensive network of seasoned executives, ready to step in immediately and guide organizations toward marketing success and sustainable competitive advantage. We’ve partnered with global brands that range from Epson to VMWare and entrepreneurial ventures from CarsDirect to Wolfgang Puck, as well as for standout organizations across a variety of other industries.

Our programs help our clients create clarity in the market and commitment among employees—essential components in the quest to get noticed—and to gain traction and grow profitable relationships. We don’t work in a black box, we don’t believe in convoluted models and we don’t have any secrets. Rather, we form a single team with our clients, we iterate constantly and we work as hard as they do to develop brands that stand out from the competition and pay off for their owners.


BrandCulture partners with world-class marketing executives—former leaders of Fortune 500 companies, Silicon Valley start-ups and every type of organization in between—who are looking for new challenges and opportunities to leverage their expertise in interim, project-based or even longer-term roles.

What types of services can a BrandCulture Acting/Interim CMO provide?

BrandCulture Acting/Interim CMOs offer the following capabilities, frequently delivered in concert with our strategic marketing and design services:1

  • Go-To-Market strategic development and implementation to target consumers; SMB; enterprise
  • Brand creation and transformation into new sales channels; verticals; partnerships; alliances
  • Sales enablement and demand generation programs to increase lead maturation, enable sales and close deals
  • Product integrations and positioning pre/post acquisitions or divestitures
  • Operations adjustments to create efficiencies into marketing—automation; data analytics; market tracking; segmentation; customer insights
  • Cost containment/budget analysis resulting in savings, reallocation of resources and streamlined services
  • Brand audit that examines both product/solution sets; competitive landscape; customer perceptions/interactions; future challenges and opportunities prior to investment
  • Primary research to determine efficacy of brand and short/long term equity
  • Transition team dynamics: restructure process—people and framework; integration across geographies, business units, product lines; link Marketing MBOs to performance indicators and Sales P&L
  • Board advisory for early-to-later stage technology start-ups, both consumer and enterprise
  • Product development, market penetration, monetization structure and customer experience leadership

Neither our Interim/Acting CMOs nor the organizations they serve have any obligation to use any BrandCulture ancillary services in conjunction with their positions. Companies are always free to select outside partners beyond the CMO role from any resources they wish to use. Many organizations do, however, choose to leverage additional strategy, design and project management resources from BrandCulture to accelerate progress on immediately pressing objectives.

What are the best reasons to hire a BrandCulture Acting/Interim CMO?

Immediate Impact

As seasoned executive talent becomes harder and harder to source and enlist, the risks of the wrong hire range from wasted time and effort to outright disaster. By hiring a BrandCulture Acting/Interim CMO, organizations immediately leverage a resource with a proven track record of success against similar challenges. We tailor our CMOs based on experience to our client organizations and all of our CMO leaders are proven executives who have performed similar duties with distinction.

Operating Efficiency

Many organizations aren’t ready for (and can’t afford) a full-time, long-term CMO. Instead of consigning marketing to an affordable, but junior staffer, we offer Acting/Interim CMOs directed to achieve specific, discrete goals, including product launches, the development of new lines of business and foundational marketing strategy. Without ongoing expensive overhead, a BrandCulture Acting/Interim CMO comes in, adds immediate value and then moves on to the next client when marketing objectives have been successfully fulfilled.

World-Class Expertise

It’s not always easy to lure a CMO away from a successful, well-financed competitor. All of our Acting/Interim CMOs have led significant marketing organizations in prior long-term positions. BrandCulture Acting/Interim CMOs combine top-tier experience with a truly objective perspective to tackle the most daunting marketing challenges successfully.

Try Before You Buy

For organizations that have already scaled to require a permanent CMO function, there is no greater job interview or pre-employment assessment than actual on-the-job performance. Our Acting/Interim CMO program allows organizations to try executives on a temporary basis to gauge expertise, organizational fit and results before making a permanent commitment.

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