By Becky Dolgener, VP of Strategy

Amy (Amy Day, President and Founder of Cowtown Creative) and I are sitting in a corporate sales team meeting, taking notes about the national and regional sales reps’ marketing needs and adding those notes to our agenda for later this week. We don’t even work here.

But we do.

What if your business doesn’t have a marketing department?

Employing subject matter experts in the areas of traditional marketing, website development, digital marketing, social media management, design, strategy, and branding – a high-level list of services we manage – would be expensive for any business. That’s why some companies don’t bother building a marketing department. Instead, they hire us.

Cowtown Creative offers a comprehensive marketing agency level of service for our corporate partners: fractional marketing services. Fractional CMO services have been a popular consulting offering at the C-suite level for a while now, and Amy has been working in the Fractional CMO space for well over a decade.

As a small and agile team of seasoned marketing professionals, we offer more than an individual fractional CMO. We take on tactical implementation as a fractional marketing team. We’re an on-call marketing department for businesses that need full-service strategy and tactical marketing implementation without the high cost.

Here’s more background and context around what fractional marketing services are, and the benefits they offer mid-size to large companies.

What is a fractional CMO?

Cowtown Creative Founder and President Amy DayA Fractional Chief Marketing Officer (CMO) is similar to a fractional marketing team but focuses specifically on the leadership and strategic direction of marketing efforts within a company.

Instead of hiring a full-time CMO, who might be expensive and may not be necessary for a company’s needs, a fractional CMO is hired on a part-time or project basis. This allows businesses to access high-level marketing expertise without the cost of a full-time executive.

Fractional CMOs typically provide strategic guidance, oversee marketing campaigns, analyze performance metrics, and help develop and execute marketing plans aligned with the company’s goals and objectives. They may also assist with hiring and managing other marketing resources, such as agencies or freelancers, as needed.

Image: Amy Day, Cowtown Creative Founder and President and Strategy Guru; Obsessed with Spreadsheets and Secretly Wants to Fish and Camp Full Time

What is a fractional marketing team?

A fractional marketing team refers to a group of marketing professionals who are hired on a part-time or project basis, rather than as full-time employees. Essentially, it’s like having access to a marketing team on demand, where you can engage experts in various aspects of marketing (such as strategy, content creation, social media management, SEO, etc.) for specific projects or periods of time, rather than having them on staff full-time.

An image of the Cowtown Creative fractional marketing services team members.

Like with the fractional CMO, this fractional (shared) approach can be cost-effective for businesses that don’t have the resources or need for a full in-house marketing team but still require specialized expertise to execute their marketing initiatives.

But, there’s a missed fractional market segment that many teams aren’t pursuing: mid-size to large corporations that prefer outsourcing marketing to agencies that bring fresh ideas into the corporate space.

The benefits of hiring a fractional marketing agency

Fractional marketing services offer several benefits for companies of all sizes:


Hiring full-time marketing professionals, especially at senior levels, can be expensive. Fractional marketing services allow businesses to access expertise on an as-needed basis, reducing overhead costs associated with salaries, benefits, and office space.


With fractional marketing services, businesses can scale their marketing efforts up or down according to their needs. Whether it’s a short-term project or ongoing support, companies have the flexibility to engage marketing professionals as required, without the commitment of long-term contracts.

Access to specialized expertise

Fractional marketing teams like ours include professionals with diverse skill sets and experiences. This allows businesses to tap into specialized expertise across various areas of marketing, such as digital marketing, content creation, branding, website design, or social media management. We also have SMEs in SEO, web design, photography, B2B strategy, CRM and lead generation, advertising… the resources on our team pretty much include everything you’d ever need.

Fresh perspectives

External marketing professionals bring fresh ideas and perspectives to the table. They can offer insights and strategies that internal teams might overlook, helping businesses stay competitive and innovative in their marketing approaches. Many of us on the Cowtown Creative team cut our teeth on corporate marketing teams, so we understand the challenges of institutionalization. We also “speak corporate” and know how to introduce new ideas with diplomacy and tact.


As businesses grow, their marketing needs evolve. Fractional marketing services can adapt to these changes, providing additional resources or expertise as required to support business growth and expansion into new markets. Because of our focus on business strategy, Cowtown Creative has helped many of our clients scale and expand into new verticals with some targeted Go To Market Strategies.

Reduced administrative burden

By outsourcing marketing tasks to fractional teams or professionals, businesses can alleviate the administrative burden associated with hiring, training, and managing in-house staff. This allows internal teams to focus on core business activities while leaving marketing activities in the hands of experts.

Overall, fractional marketing services offer businesses a cost-effective, flexible, and scalable solution to meet a company’s marketing needs while accessing specialized expertise and staying competitive in today’s dynamic and blended marketplace.

Our team primarily focuses on digital efforts because that’s where today’s consumers can be reached most effectively. For some clients, however, it makes sense to incorporate more traditional pieces of the marketing and revenue optimization puzzle, and that’s where our focus on integrated marketing really shines. We manage branding, internal and external communications, advertising (including TV, radio, outdoor, and print), public relations, and reputation management – basically anything a marketing department, brand manager, and communications department would do.

Add an instant marketing department to your business

The beauty of having access to a fractional marketing department is that our clients don’t have to have it all figured out. We help clients develop integrated marketing strategies that consider current market conditions specific to their industry, competitor analysis, and a mix of tactics that will help them become or remain competitive. The proof is in the results, and the results are always about the bottom line.

Meet the Rest of the Team (L to R):

Becky Dolgener, VP of Strategy and SEO/Content Nerd; Makes Jokes in Meetings and Lectures About How “Words Mean Things.”
Katie Robinson, Creative Director and Brand Design Genius; Not Afraid to Call Your Brand Ugly (But Then Make It Better).

Jenna Farquhar, Account Manager and Content Superhuman; Knits Competitively to Channel Insatiable Perfectionism.
Adrienne Lustgarten, Marketing Admin Asst. and Master of Everything She Touches; Likes Old-School Rap and Extremely Large Dogs.

The most important advice we can offer businesses that don’t currently have marketing support, or aren’t seeing an ROI from marketing efforts: Don’t wait until desperation sets in.

“A lot of damage can be done to a business that uses poor or outdated marketing tactics, or none at all,” Amy said during a recent team meeting. “At that point, they come to us just grabbing at straws. Their business is on the verge of failure, and they have some pretty inflated ideas about how quickly they have to recover.”

“Then we have to break it to them that just throwing everything at a single tactic like PPC isn’t going to magically produce immediate revenue.”

Graphic with text: it takes 90 days for new Google ads to start working.

Great marketing takes some time, and it’s as much about building relationships with prospects as it is about having realistic timelines, budgets, and expectations. If you’re not desperate, but you know you need some help with marketing, talk to us now. We offer a 30-minute consultation where we talk with you about your business goals and needs, then design a proposal based on what we think you need the most. It’s free, and it’s a sneak preview of what you’ll get when you hire us as your fractional marketing department: an honest conversation about how you can use marketing to improve your bottom line.

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