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Frequently Asked Questions

CMO-as-a-Service

Is my CMO part-time? How many hours per week can I count on him/her?

Your CMO is always available, just like a full-time team member of your executive team. We provide a shared model, not part-time. We have a team of professionals that will be dedicated to your project. This allows your CMO to focus their attention on leading your marketing function.

What does a typical workday for a Fractional/Shared CMO look like?

This article describes the work for a SaaS CMO. It's an overview that will be different per engagement but gives a good initial indication.

Can I announce my new CMO-as-a-Service publicly as "my" CMO? Can I send out a press release?

Yes, your CMO is a "real CMO" who is on your leadership team, and officially able to represent your company. By all means, let's get the word out!

Will my CMO work onsite, together with my team?

Your CMO will meet your team early in the engagement, and be onsite at least quarterly. In addition, your CMO will join your critical leadership team meetings.

Most of the work will be done remotely. We have found that building a virtual team works very well for SaaS Marketing Teams. Using modern technologies like Zoom Video Meetings and planning tools like Trello help a team be very focused on the work. In team meetings, everyone will use video to ensure maximum, focused participation. More on the best practices we use are described in Jason Fried's book, REMOTE, where he describes how his team built some of the most successful SaaS companies using 100% remote teams.

Is my CMO part of my Management Team? Will my CMO join me for critical executive engagements like meetings with our Board of Directors?

Yes, your CMO is a "normal" CMO who you can count on to be 100% part of your executive team, including all the obligations that come with that expectation. They can be presented on your website, and participate in your leadership team and board meetings as appropriate.

 

Engagement model

What does Kalungi need to know about a company before feeling comfortable enough to take them on as a client?

As long as your company falls close to our ICP, with some exceptions, we feel confident in our marketing playbook and experience to take you on as a client!

What does the start of the engagement look like?

An announcement of the new CMO to the team and the organization usually goes hand in hand with personal meetings with all team members and key stakeholders. The CMO will also meet with all members of the Executive Team. If possible, we try to schedule an initial visit on-site to meet the team in person. This can be done regularly if appropriate, for example as part of quarterly leadership team meetings.

What does a full engagement include?

A full engagement includes three parts: marketing leadership, inbound marketing, and account-based marketing . Marketing leadership will be led by an Associate or Executive CMO, depending on your request and requirements, to lead overall strategy and manage your team of specialists. Both inbound and account-based marketing will include a wide variety of agency services such as copywriters, graphic designers, video content creators, automation specialists, website developers, etc. These resources can be scaled up and down at no additional cost, to best suit your organization’s marketing needs.

Do you manage vendors or bring them in?

An announcement of the new CMO to the team and the organization usually goes hand in hand with personal meetings with all team members and key stakeholders. The CMO will also meet early with all members of the Executive Team. If possible, we try to schedule an initial visit on-site to meet the team in person. This can be done regularly if appropriate, for example as part of quarterly leadership team meetings.

What if we work with other agencies that specialize in specific marketing services, such as SEO or SEM? Can we still work with Kalungi?

Absolutely. Kalungi’s marketing leadership has no problem working alongside and/or managing outside agencies and helping connect all the dots to ensure smooth and impactful marketing processes are in place. We even pride ourselves on helping clients’ agencies improve their campaigns and results, with our own expertise and best practices.

 

How long do you usually stay with one firm?

There is no standard length for an engagement. To have a maximum impact a 6-12 month engagement is a good minimum. It's possible to hire our CMOs for many years and keep adjusting the engagement to the needs of your company as they evolve.

What email will you use?

Our CMO acts as an ordinary employee of your company. This includes using an email address with your company identity and being presented as your CMO on your website.

Do you hire/fire?

Yes. Your CMO acts as a normal staff member on your team and manages the marketing function completely, including making personnel decisions.

Do other CMOs help out?

Yes. The power of our team is the broad set of experiences, and deep competency in specific industries, marketing specialties, and business models. Our CMOs lean on each other and team up to provide significantly more value to your business then they could do on their own.

Which CRM tools do you use?

We use Hubspot for the end to end automation of Marketing, Sales and Customer Success. We also support the need for outbound campaigns with Autobound, Outreach.io or other similar tools.

If I am not a venture backed company, does that mean I can’t work with Kalungi?

You can still work with Kalungi if you are not a venture backed company. The reason we prefer venture backed companies is solely based on their ability and willingness to facilitate marketing growth. Marketing can be costly, so as long as you are willing to make marketing a strategic priority and financially able to hire our services, we are happy to have you.

Does every engagement with Kalungi have to be a full engagement?

The typical engagement is a full engagement, which covers marketing leadership, inbound marketing, and outbound marketing. However, although we recommend a full engagement to obtain the best possible ROI and experience, you do not have to sign on for a full engagement. Kalungi is open to customizing an engagement to your company's needs if we feel we can still make a significant impact and produce positive results.

How much does Kalungi get into the sales side of the business?

In a typical engagement, Kalungi will work alongside your sales team, but we will by no means manage them. However, we do have a sales leadership service that we offer for an additional charge. In a typical engagement, we will work closely with BDR/SDRs and will produce battle cards, funnel structure, and handoff procedures. This will align marketing and sales, increase accountability, and will increase sales follow-up speed.

Pricing

What's the cost of a typical engagement?

Kalungi works with a retainer model, that can include a pay-for-performance component. When you outsource your Marketing function to Kalungi, you will typically pay less than hiring a marketing team of full-time employees. Our pricing is based on that. This list of Marketing needs for a typical B2B SaaS Venture provides another benchmark to create your budget.

Kalungi provides you instant talent, with the right, specialized expertise and experience, on-demand. We can hit the ground running and you don't risk making the wrong hires. All this at a cost that is much lower than hiring, onboarding and managing an in-house team.

Do you accept an opportunity to earn equity in my company as payment?

Yes, we are open to discussing any form of pay-for-performance. As long as we can connect our work to the outcomes we feel comfortable to "bleed and feast" with you.

Can I pay Kalungi for Performance?

Yes, we pride ourselves to take accountability for results if you outsource your complete marketing function to Kalungi. You can read more about how we do it here.

What advice do you give when planning a B2B SaaS marketing budget?

I'm worried about hiring a "mercenary" vs. someone who will grow with my team and is vested in the long-term success of my company. How does your model address this?

The average tenure of CMOs with B2B SaaS companies under $50M ARR is between 8-18 months. The reality is that it's very hard to count on people or companies for a long-term commitment in today's employer/employee relationship. Equity-based compensation with longer vesting schedules can help with this, but for that to be meaningful it can get expensive. Our CMO can grow with your team and stay with you as long as there is a need and it’s a good fit. Our experience has shown us that the type of marketing leadership needs for growing companies changes dramatically over time, so it's hard to assess whether the CMO hired today will still be the right CMO 2-3 years from now.

What expectations should I have about the amount of time we will spend together, services provided, etc?

All of Kalungi's engagement tiers include the standard set of services that are listed at kalungi.com/services. Our engagement model enables us to provide the full stack of marketing agency services and the pricing level just determines "how much" you get. Just as a full-time employee would have a limited number of hours in the day to accomplish tasks, we manage bandwidth to fit the investment level. 

In order to contain costs, we assign an Associate CMO to engage with every client. These are professionals with significant marketing leadership experience as well as a strong track record of tactical marketing success. Stijn Hendrikse, Kalungi's CMO, would be involved in your account and likely will participate as part of your leadership team -- but much of the day-to-day engagement and tactical execution will be driven by an Associate CMO.

For commitments of 3 months and longer, are fees still paid monthly?

Fees and costs are projected based upon pre-payment. However, part of Kalungi's unique value prop is our ability to scale pricing and be flexible with payment terms in order to meet our client's needs and budget. This may be an area that we can work with you, depending on the specific contours of the engagement.

What type of marketing staff would we need in-house to assist with execution?

We can work in any type of environment and this would really be something to be decided by you and in conjunction with your CMO leadership once we began. As we get going and see what works -- for example, perhaps trade shows become a heavy focus, or social media/digital marketing are the big drivers of ARR growth -- then we may recommend hiring a marketing professional that specializes in that required skill set. This helps drive continuity and consistency as well as lower average costs. Alternatively, some clients prefer to keep their marketing function outsourced in order to remain dynamic and flexible to adjust to evolving circumstances. This is something that would need to be calibrated and figured out once an engagement has begun.

What is outside of Kalungi's scope?

When you purchase Kalungi's services, you have a comprehensive marketing team at your service that will own everything from the high-level strategy to execution across your marketing entire marketing function. However, there are a few areas that are not included in our pricing:

  • Media "real estate" - This encompasses all media from PPC ads, to TV ad buys, to collateral, to trade show booths. While Kalungi will be happy to own the planning, messaging, design, and execution behind each piece of media, we won't purchase the actual media for you.
  • Marketing tech stack - Kalungi requires that you pay for your Marketing tech stack. This means that you will pay each of your tech stack vendors directly, although Kalungi will run, monitor, and maintain each for you.
  • Additional personnel - Kalungi will not pay for additional personnel, whether they are full-time employees, contractors, additional consultants, or agencies. That being said, you shouldn't feel a need to hire additional talent, as Kalungi should give you more than enough resources across the entire marketing discipline.
  • Product launch PR - While Kalungi does cover general PR, we do recommend that you reach out to an additional agency for a "big splash" item like a product launch. For these scenarios, we have developed a package with BLAST Media for a 3-month PR sprint that will fully support a big item like a launch. If you are interested in their services, please reach out to our sales team. 

Does Kalungi’s cost include non-agency related spending on marketing such as paid media or event costs?

No it does not. Our fees will cover our services, and foundational one-time costs but will not cover promotional costs like advertising campaigns, events, or your marketing tech stack. However, we will create a marketing budget that will include these additional costs in order to ensure your company stays within budget. Additionally, Kalungi is very ROI driven and will audit these additional line items to ensure they are actually beneficial to your marketing strategy. 

Does Kalungi have a recommended CAC (Customer Acquisition Cost) for B2B SaaS companies or does it depend on the company?

We do not have a set CAC cost, as it varies heavily depending on your company and industry. However, part of our services include auditing marketing spend, funnel conversions, and channel ROI, so that we can gain an accurate picture of your CAC and develop a strategy to improve it.

What if we have multiple products/solutions within our company? Is Kalungi willing to work with more than one?

Yes, Kalungi is able to work with multiple solutions. To accommodate this, we will adjust our pricing and scale our agency’s bandwidth to ensure we are covering all your needs.