Cosmin Gabriel | Fractional CMOs & The 90-Day Win

This video features Cosmin Gabriel discussing the role of fractional Chief Marketing Officers (CMOs) and their strategies for achieving significant results within the first 90 days of a new engagement. Hosted by Dean Way, the conversation explores the challenges, early wins, and key considerations for fractional CMOs in various business environments.


Fractional CMOs bring invaluable experience and strategic insights to help companies achieve early wins and set a solid foundation for future success. Their focus on establishing clear communication, aligning with key stakeholders, and identifying quick wins is essential for driving impactful results within the first 90 days.

Key points

πŸ› οΈ Establishing Communication: Setting up clear communication protocols and feedback loops is crucial in the initial days.

🎯 Identifying Stakeholders: Understanding who the key players are and building relationships with them is vital for success.

πŸ“ˆ KPI Focus: Identifying and focusing on the right key performance indicators (KPIs) to measure success.

🌐 Customer Experience: Prioritizing the customer experience and ensuring it is well-defined and collaborative.

πŸ” Early Wins: Securing early wins by addressing quick pain points and showing immediate results.

πŸ“Š Marketing Cadence: Maintaining a consistent and repetitive marketing approach for sustained success.

πŸš€ Strategic Recommendations: Leveraging strategic insights to significantly improve conversion rates and return on ad spend.

🧠 Leadership Impact: Bringing in leadership to assess and enhance the marketing team for better performance.

πŸ” Understanding Needs: CEOs should understand the unique value fractional CMOs bring and leverage their expertise effectively.

❌ Avoiding Mismatches: Identifying when a company is not ready for a fractional CMO, such as looking for tactical execution rather than strategic leadership.


  1. Introduction: Dean Way introduces the podcast and the topic of fractional CMOs and their role in achieving early wins in client engagements. [0-3]
  2. Common Problems: Cosmin discusses the typical problems fractional CMOs encounter, such as unclear success metrics and stagnation. [27-77]
  3. Establishing Communication: Cosmin emphasizes the importance of setting up clear communication protocols and identifying key stakeholders within the first 30 days. [129-233]
  4. Understanding KPIs: Cosmin highlights the challenges CEOs face in understanding which KPIs to focus on and the importance of identifying the right metrics. [256-313]
  5. Maximizing Value: CEOs should understand the unique value fractional CMOs bring, leveraging their decades of experience for strategic recommendations and better results. [330-429]
  6. Avoiding Mismatches: Cosmin explains how to identify when a company is not ready for a fractional CMO, such as seeking tactical execution rather than strategic leadership. [444-556]
  7. Hiring Heads of Sales: Cosmin discusses the qualities to look for in a head of sales, emphasizing the importance of understanding and prioritizing the customer experience. [576-721]
  8. Customer Experience: The importance of creating a welcoming and valuable customer experience, akin to walking into a garden rather than an empty closet. [610-809]
  9. Leadership and Collaboration: Emphasizing the need for a collaborative relationship between sales and marketing to optimize the customer experience. [767-809]
  10. Contact Information: Cosmin shares his contact information and where to find him for further engagement. [812-841]


  1. 0:34 – “The problems that I usually see in the very beginning are just questions quite frankly around how do we measure success or we’ve been stagnating and just hitting a plateau.”
  2. 0:42 – “The problems are just a lot of unknowns for the CEO right and specifically around the teams that they’ve been doing it for a while and they’re just looking for outside help.”
  3. 1:00 – “I think just coming in and bringing a sense of calm and direction is a huge step in looking and trying to help and solve some of those problems.”
  4. 1:48 – “In the first couple of days if you don’t get communication right, you’re really not as effective. It’s more about the trust and the immediate impact you can have within the organization.”
  5. 2:27 – “Being very aligned with the CEO or the business owner on what are those measures of success within 30 days.”
  6. 4:00 – “The commonality that I’ve seen with working in different companies is what are the KPIs that I need to look at and focus on.”
  7. 4:32 – “Marketing has hundreds of KPIs, and a lot of challenges that I’ve seen are CEOs and business owners being presented with various KPIs and not knowing which one to focus on.”
  8. 5:00 – “Understanding what that KPI is going to be is really important.”
  9. 6:00 – “One strategic recommendation could significantly adjust your conversion rates to now instead of making 3x return on ad spend, you’re making five and a half or six.”
  10. 7:02 – “As a full-time CMO, you’re hiring me to assess the team, to ensure that the people on the team are the right ones, and if they’re not, either how do we upskill them or add on other ones.”
  11. 8:12 – “You’re hiring me for that leadership impact that I can have on the organization.”
  12. 8:45 – “I can roll up my sleeves and work alongside the person to ensure they’re going in the right direction.”
  13. 9:48 – “What I’m really looking for is their understanding or prioritization of the customer experience.”
  14. 11:14 – “Marketing and sales need to think about it in a simple analogy: are we bringing them into a garden or an empty closet?”
  15. 11:50 – “Once they come in, we need to start understanding the churn experience. How are we educating them? How are we moving them through?”
  16. 12:35 – “Marketing will bring the lead and then it’s a matter of what is that experience pulling it through.”
  17. 13:12 – “From a brand reputation and brand love, all of that starts diminishing from the very beginning if it’s transactional and there’s no long-term value for the customer.”
  18. 13:32 – “Are we bringing them into a garden or an empty closet? What is that experience once you get there?”
  19. 14:02 – “You can find me at and also at and on LinkedIn as Cosmin Gabriel.”
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