CMO Executive Search

Our specialist marketing executive search consultants work with large and scaling businesses to identify and engage marketing leaders and build high performance marketing teams. 

We specialise in Chief Marketing Officer executive search because of our vast network of contacts, deep background knowledge and strong expertise across different market sectors. Regardless of the flavour of the brief, we’re a marketing executive search firm who know where to look to find what you need.

We are also experienced in the high growth area of Fractional CMO recruitment.

Digital Marketing Recruitment Agency

Case study: CMO Executive Search

Intelligent People did a brilliant executive search, providing a quality list of very engaged candidates to us extremely quickly. The quality of the shortlist we received is testament to the expertise and service offering within Intelligent People.

We couldn’t be happier with Intelligent People as our executive search recruitment partner for this role.

Read full case study


Executive Search Client

Case study: Chief Marketing Officer

‘We really liked that Intelligent People had a defined recruitment process: preparation, sourcing, approaching and engagement, selection and screening, shortlist, interview, and offer. The process was thorough and gave us a good feeling from the outset that Chris and his team knew what they were doing.’

Read full case study


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Employer: Andrew at Goodfellow

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How to hire a CMO in 2024

We’ve compiled comprehensive guides to assist you with the hiring process for this role and other senior marketing vacancies:

  • Understanding CMO responsibilities
  • Establishing realistic and attractive salary and benefits packages
  • Identifying scenarios in which a CMO can add value
  • Crafting effective selection processes including interview formats, testing and questions
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CMO executive search


Every search begins with a clear definition of requirements. Our lead consultants work closely with you to understand exactly what you need from this senior marketing appointment and the impact you’re looking for from this hire, identifying key leadership competencies, industry experience and personal qualities to benchmark candidates.

Candidate identification & process management

We use multiple channels to identify high-performing Chief Marketing Officer candidates. In the current competitive London and EMEA careers market we work by finding both active career climbers and headhunting executive leaders.

Complemented by our network of global connections, we provide tailored referrals and recommendations based on your candidate goals. Only individuals who demonstrate genuine leadership capability against the original brief are presented at shortlist stage.


Every project involves extensive referencing to support our original analysis and candidate recommendations.

I need to hire

Tell us more about your vacancy and what you are looking for in a candidate.

We’ll listen carefully to your needs and using our industry experience and vast network, we’ll connect you to real talent in the market.

Fill in this form or alternatively contact us on 01727 736690.

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What makes us unique?


Our marketing search focus makes us different and our specialist domain knowledge across marketing gives us a clear advantage. Our consultants have worked within marketing departments themselves, knowing first-hand what a good hire looks like, and how to get there.


As a specialist marketing executive search agency, we understand what motivates Chief Marketing Officers to join a new opportunity. As part of our engagement strategy, we take all candidates through a briefing process to include the business strategy, the marketing roadmap, what the objectives are for the business and where their skills can help with business growth.


As we already have a network of candidates which is 35,000 strong, we do not have to spend time at the ‘discovery’ phase of work that other marketing search firms need to. This means that we can deliver much more quickly, without compromising quality and achieve better outcomes for our clients. We can deliver a shortlist to you within 5-6 weeks.

Executive marketing salary expectations

Head of Marketing


Salary expectations:
£80,000 – £110,000

Role description

A Head of Marketing role is often a transition from managing an aspect of marketing, to managing a multi-functional team of specialists. Depending on the size of the organisation, a generalist approach to marketing is often best at this level, able to make best practise decisions and support team members by giving them strategic direction and the tools to be effective at their job without hand holding.

Marketing Director


Salary expectations:
£100,000 – £170,000

Role description

Within a Marketing Director role, the candidate will be responsible for designing and delivering comprehensive marketing strategies to increase brand awareness, lead generation and loyalty within the customer base. The Marketing Director must champion the brand, ensuring the brand is represented consistently throughout all promotional activities and channels.

VP Marketing


Salary expectations:
£130,000 – £220,000

Role description

The VP of Marketing is responsible for setting the brand vision and overall direction of the marketing teams, creating both a long- and short-term plan, using KPIs and objectives to review performance. The VP will need to ensure the customer is considered at each stage of the marketing process and oversee the user experience from start to finish, reporting to the CEO on strategic performance metrics.

Chief Marketing Officer

Salary expectations:
£150,000 – £350,000

Role description

Chief Marketing Officer (CMO) roles are often similar in roles and responsibilities as Marketing VP’s. Both levels require a strong person to adopt the voice of the customer, implementing customer segmentation models, to improve user experience across all marketing touchpoints.

Job description: CMO

If you’re in search of a Chief Marketing Officer to join your team, we can assist you. We have put together an example job description for a Chief Marketing Officer position that you can download and use to aid your recruitment process.

Alternatively, you can opt to have our marketing recruitment experts handle the recruitment process for you. Just contact us today to learn more about this service.

Job Description

CMO interview questions

Use our interview questions list to uncover a deep understanding of your CMO candidates’ approach, skills and culture. We’re sure these questions will also fire your own ideas for adapting them to your company’s unique marketing position.

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Marketing headhunter

The headhunting cost for an executive level marketing leader will often be between 25 – 28% of the candidates’ salary and bonus package.

Marketing retained search means that we as a recruitment agency charge a third of the overall commission on engagement of our services. This allows us the time to take a full briefing with regards to the type of professional that can fulfil the responsibilities involved and complement the culture of your wider brand.

We then can move on to an in-depth research phase of the project, leaving no stone unturned in finding the best match for your business. We also take the time to scour the competitor market through LinkedIn and other means, to effectively headhunt top talent in the market, which has previously demonstrated the skills and attributes that you require.

On completion of a shortlist, a further third of the commission is taken, before we move onto interviews, second interviews and offer stages of the process. Only on completion and placement of an individual within that role, is the last instalment of the fee due.

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Further executive search reading

Business Investment


Q: Is a headhunter the same as a recruiter?
A: A executive search headhunter usually works within a recruitment agency, and they aim to fill executive or C-level position roles. They do this by searching the competitor landscape and approaching 'passive' candidates and engaging them in the open vacancy. A traditional recruiter can recruit across any level of role, and this is normally with 'active' candidates who have actively applied for the role directly or through a job board.
Q: Is a headhunter worth it?
A: The simple answer is yes. It's almost impossible for internal recruitment teams to spend the amount of time that is required for headhunting. So the benefits of engaging an marketing executive search firm or headhunter are clear - they already know the market well and has build up a network of talented marketing candidates within the field, is the most time and cost effective strategy.
Q: What is an executive search role?
A: Executive search is a particular type of recruitment, aiming to fill executive or C-level positions within businesses that require this level of talent for their strategic management teams. Executive search includes the headhunting process, where passive candidates in the competitor landscape are approached, as well as active candidates,
Q: How much does a headhunter get paid?
A: A headhunter usually receives between 25-28% of the candidates salary and bonus package, as commission for the headhunting and recruitment services that they provide.