Link To Guest Websites: Chief Outsiders

Title: “Finding A CMO That Fits Your Industry And Your Company Culture”
Guest: Kath Searle of Chief Outsiders
Interviewers: Nathan Gobes – Radio Entrepreneurs, Craig James – Vistage, & Peter Myerson – Author & Retired Attorney

Click here to read the transcript

Nathan (0s):
Welcome back Radio Entrepreneurs, listeners and fans. I’m producer Nathan Gobes. I’m excited to be back in the studio, filling in for Jeffrey Davis this morning. And I have by my side, two wonderful co-hosts. I have Peter Meyerson author and retired attorney. Welcome Peter.

Peter (20s):
Great to be here.

Nathan (21s):
Great to have you. And of course, I also have Craig James of Vistage here with me to welcome Craig.

Craig (29s):
Thank you, Nathan. Always a pleasure to be here and contribute

Nathan (32s):
Pleasure to have you. And we want to introduce our guest for this segment, Kath Searle, fractional CMO with chief outsiders. Welcome Kath. So Kath, it’s a pleasure to have you, why don’t we start by asking you, tell us about Chief Outsiders, what it is you do?

Kath (53s):
Sure. Chief Outsiders is actually a fractional CMO firm, we have about 108 chief marketing officers. And these are individuals who have served as official chief marketing officers in at least two different companies. And really our role is to work with small to mid-size businesses to really step in, to help them develop their marketing strategy, help them with ensuring the right teams in place to support that strategy and then certainly executing and measuring the success of that given strategy.

Nathan (1m 31s):
Yeah, I’m sure that, oh, sorry, Peter. I didn’t mean to jump in, but I was going to say, I’m sure that many of the, as you said, smaller to mid-size companies that that need a CMOs, especially if they’re entrepreneurial they’re, you know, they’re launching, you know, maybe their first product, something like that. They really need the help, but they’re not at the size yet or the, the revenue to, to bring on a full-time CMO of their own

Kath (1m 60s):
Precisely. And that’s really the beauty of chief outsiders. You get that, that burst of experience immediately as you bring one of us on board. And it really is a more cost-effective alternative as you stated to a small to mid-sized business. So, and I have to tell you, after being a CMO for roughly 20, 25 years, it is fun. It’s such a wonderful opportunity at this point in my career to really amass all of the experiences that I’ve been blessed to have and bring those to bear for a small to mid size company that really, you know, doesn’t know marketing to the degree that they should.

Kath (2m 45s):
So it’s, it’s just a wonderful combination of bringing the experience to bear in helping a company grow. And our goal is always to accelerate their growth. So it’s, it’s magical, it’s fun. And it’s, it’s a great feeling to actually see these companies grow and thrive.

Peter (3m 6s):
Do you specialize in any particular business segments?

Kath (3m 11s):
I do well. So first of all, chief outsiders overall, we have expertise in 70 plus industries. So whatever the type of business you are, we’re confident we will have a CMO that will be able to meet your needs. Personally, I have a pretty eclectic background. So I had the opportunity to work for a multi-industry company or the bulk of my career. And it was predominantly within aerospace, defense and intelligence, but also owned a contingent of industrial businesses. So from golf cars to power mowers, to tools, to fuel systems.

Kath (3m 52s):
So it really gave me an opportunity to experience business in a variety of different industries and also with companies of, of varied sizes. So again, it’s, I pretty much skin dive into any B2B or a B to G environment.

Peter (4m 10s):
So, so if somebody goes to chief outsiders, do they request you or do they give them their, excuse me, give them their, their background and what their basic industry is. And then she found ciders does a scrolling of whatever, you know, you know,

Nathan (4m 32s):
How does that process work?

Kath (4m 33s):
So it’s actually a variety of different channels that the customer can come to us and request a CMO. They can go to our website, chief and actually go in and take a look at our offering, but then can look at all of our CMOs and sort them. So if their industry, if they’re interested in a retail CMO within the hospitality industry, they’re able to go in search. And then the list of CMOs that have that expertise are then presented to them. So that’s one way, and then they can click on the person’s profile and an email will automatically come to us as the CMO. The other way is just reaching out the contact form again, through the website.

Kath (5m 18s):
And one of our managing partners actually will take a look at the company, the industry that they’re operating in and then bring two or three CMOs to the table to have a discussion with the company. So one of the things that we try to do is make sure that the company has an opportunity to choose a CMO that they feel comfortable with because as we know, expertise is one thing and being able to bring the skill and capability, but cultural fit is incredibly important. So we always make sure that we bring a few folks to the table so that the CEO can determine who would be the best fit within their environment.

Nathan (5m 58s):
Yeah, yeah. I’m sure. Especially when picking somebody who, you know, is going to help with their marketing and, you know, really their, their outreach, their branding, the culture aligning with that is very important. I know Craig has some questions and, and Craig, I promise we’ll hand it over to you, but I have one more before we do, do you have any tips, tricks, or best advice that you might give to business owners that are, you know, thinking about bringing on their first CMO, a fractional CMO, et cetera, or just, you know, concerned about their, their general marketing efforts in this, in this day and age, you know, in this stage of COVID, we’re in stage of the economy, et cetera, that we’re in,

Kath (6m 46s):
I would say first off, but I applaud that they realized that there may be a problem. So oftentimes people know what they know. And I have found with some companies that they’re not quite sure what they need. So I encourage them to reach out to a, a CMO at chief outsiders, ideally, but have that conversation because part of our job is really working collaboratively, did the business, and we’ll very quickly assess kind of where they are in their marketing journey and work with them in their teams to, again, accelerate the growth through an effective go to market strategy.

Kath (7m 27s):
There’s also companies that come to us that perhaps the strategy is intact, but their positioning or their messaging, you know, isn’t quite there or there, they’re not skilled at bringing a product to market. So, you know, we offer a variety of different services that really help the company to get to where they need to go, you know, based on what their particular needs are. So it’s, it’s definitely not one size fits all. Every company is so unique and so different. I encourage that they have the conversation and, and help the marketing professional, understand their goals and objectives.

Nathan (8m 10s):
Yeah. I know that really all executives at any stage need, need, advice, need peers. They can, they can reach out to and speak to, which is a great segue into Vistage. And Craig, I know you had a question or two for Kath,

Craig (8m 27s):
Just a couple of Nathan. So in my experience as a Vistage chair, which I’ve been doing for about six years now, I’ve seen entrepreneurs come in a couple of different stripes. So you have the entrepreneur who just has it in his or her blood from the get-go or comes from a family business entrepreneurial background. And that’s what they do coming out of the gate. Then there’s the entrepreneur who spends 20 or 30 years in the corporate world and suddenly realizes, you know, I’m kind of tired of this. I think I’ll try my hand at an entrepreneurial venture. Obviously, Kathy, you were of the ladder.

Craig (9m 8s):
That’s courageous. I think. How did you come to the idea of leaving the corporate world to strike out? Not exactly on your own because you are affiliated with chief outsiders or ciders, but essentially you’re an entrepreneur now.

Kath (9m 21s):
Yeah, it was a definite shift and it definite new experience for me. But I had gotten to the point in my career where I was the highest I can possibly get. So when you’re a marketing professional and you become the CMO, and in my case, it was a $16 billion global company. I sat back and I was getting ready to turn 50 and I evaluated next steps in my career. And I thought, you know what? I would love to get involved with businesses that could benefit from the experiences that I’ve had. And that’s how I was able to connect with chief outsiders because at this point in my career opening, my own company seemed scary to me, but working within this fractional CMO environment was a perfect, perfect fit.

Kath (10m 16s):
So it was, it was time for me to do something different and honestly, to give back.

Craig (10m 23s):
Fantastic. And just one more question, Kat. So you recently joined the Vistage group. Can you tell me how you found out about Vistage and what you expect to get out of your participation in Vista?

Kath (10m 38s):
As I began to what really absorb the new environment, the entrepreneurial environment, I knew it was important to begin to develop relationships with individuals that were also supporting small to mid sized businesses. So as I had conversations with colleagues that chief outsiders colleagues who are within other similar business models, everyone pointed to Vistage. So all it took was one quick look at the website and look at the reputation that Vistage has. And I knew it would be a wonderful opportunity for me for my own personal development.

Kath (11m 20s):
So, you know, as I have shared in the past, what I hope to get out of this stage is really that opportunity to serve as a trusted advisor, certainly to other members, but also become part of a peer group that can work together to continue to share best practices, to help each of our businesses grow more effectively. To me, that’s exciting. That’s an opportunity to be part of a supportive network of folks who really want to grow their business together.

Nathan (11m 53s):
Well, thank you, Kath. This has been a, an excellent segment. We really appreciate having you on the show. So cats Searle, a fractional CMO with chief outsiders cath. If people are interested in chief outsiders, want to find out how they can bring on a CMO, inquire, some help, et cetera, what’s the best way for them to, to get in touch

Kath (12m 16s):
The right to the website. So it’s chief

Nathan (12m 21s):
Great. And Craig, if people want to get in touch with you or find out more about Vistige, how could they do that?

Craig (12m 30s):
Sure. Well, Vistage is V as in Victor, I S T H And to reach me, it’s simply my first name dot last name,

Nathan (12m 45s):
Great. And last but hardly least Peter Peter Myerson author, and retired attorney. How could people get in touch with you if they wanted to?

Peter (12m 55s):
Well, they can, you know, my email is P P and if they want to find my novel, they can go into and type my name in the search bar. And the first item up is my novel heroes in a different time. And, you know, hopefully there’ll be a new novel there soon. I do have one question, you know, cath, if somebody wanted to get ahold of you, how would they do that?

Kath (13m 26s):
Terrific. Thank you. It would, it would be case Searle. So K S E a R L And thank you, Peter.

Nathan (13m 39s):
Yeah, of course. Maybe somebody with, you know, fits your particular industry background is, is interested in reaching out to you directly.

Kath (13m 47s):
I would welcome the opportunity. Thank you.

Nathan (13m 50s):
I want to thank you all for joining us and radio entrepreneurs. This has been a, another segment with radio entrepreneurs.

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