She/her holding up a notebook asking "Need a Fractional CMO?"

What is a Fractional CMO?

Video Transcript: What the Frack is a Fractional CMO?!



Jessica Kelley, CEO of HPZ Marketing

Transcribed by Edna Ahts (Thank you!)

[Audio Length: 00:03:37}


What the frack is a Fractional Marketer? It’s basically having a high-powered, experienced Chief Marketing Officer at a fraction of the cost. You don’t have to put him on the payroll to really help drive that wisdom set and drive results. Results have never been in the equation for marketing. You do these pretty little ads, you get in front of the sales team, and there was no accountability. That really ticks me off! I’ve spent my whole career in marketing and there’s no accountability. We have a bad name in marketing, and I’m set to change that. That’s exactly what I’m doing. I am taking my knowledge, wisdom set, experience, school of hard knocks, bullet holes and being able to help multiple companies that need our help.

The name that I came up with for my business has an external meaning and an internal meaning. It’s called HPZ Marketing—High Performance Marketing—we help from A to Z. Those were my grandfather’s initials. He was a pioneer in computer science, he would be so proud. Someone recently said to me, “I believe, Jessica Kelley, you are the first Fractional Chief Marketing Officer in Minnesota who is a Women Business Enterprise certified. And I never thought of myself as a pioneer.

Did I believe this could be the next stage in my career? Absolutely not. Absolutely not. If someone had said to me, you’re going to start your own business, I would have said, sure, I know business, I’m really good at it, but to do my own, absolutely not. But I did it. I plugged my nose and jumped. And two people really important in my life said to me, three months after I started my business, my father was one of them, English teacher, “You were born to run your own business.” “Dad, where were  you 10 years ago?!” And my very first marketing boss around the same time said, “I’m so proud of you, what took you so long?!”

Now that I have joined the fractional world, I am CEO of my own business. What have been some of the greatest things that have happened so far? Hey, I have paying clients. They’re paying me for my expertise. If I wasn’t doing  UFM—Unified Funnel Metrics, is I probably would have been out of a job for many, many, many, many  months to find the right one and then probably piece some stuff together or take a job at low, low pay. Low, low pay.

People have asked me what’s it like being CEO of your own company? You seem different. You seem happier. You seem more relaxed. Absolutely. I don’t regret it one second because I’m in control of my life, I’m running my own business, I’m doing what I love to do and helping other small businesses succeed. I have had friend and family tell me, “This is good. This looks good on you.”