How to find the best marketing executives for your company

AboveBoard | Oct 04, 2023

Discover essential executive search tools and strategies

The marketing world is ever-evolving, and you need an adaptable, results-driven Chief Marketing Officer. But how do you find them?

From data-driven marketing and staying on top of the latest trends to building brand awareness and increasing revenue, hiring your next marketing executive requires expertise in executive sales and marketing recruitment.

That’s why working with marketing executive recruiters and marketing executive search firms can be an essential step toward an efficient, productive search. Tapping resources outside of our traditional networks can help expand the candidate pool and ultimately lead to identifying the right marketing leader. Ahead, we’ve outlined what you need to know to hire your next marketing executive. 

Let’s get started. 

A quick guide to executive search marketing

There are two primary paths to an executive search in marketing: connecting with a marketing executive recruiter/headhunter or collaborating with an executive search firm. Typically, marketing executive recruiters or headhunters focus on identifying a large pool of candidates, whereas executive search firms work alongside hiring companies to find candidates that best match their needs. Ahead, we'll offer pointers on how to work with both marketing executive recruiters and strategies for partnering with marketing executive search firms.

Collaborate with marketing executive recruiters

Executive sales and marketing recruitment, particularly for C-suite and boardroom roles, often entails working with marketing executive recruiters. Typically, these recruiters are retained by the hiring company to hire their next marketing executive. Here are a few best practices to keep in mind when engaging with marketing executive recruiters:

  • Pinpoint your hiring objectives. What position are you seeking to fill, and for how long? Whether you're seeking a full-time CMO or a fractional marketing executive, an experienced marketing executive recruiter can be an invaluable asset. But before kickstarting your search, they'll need to know what you're looking for in a candidate. Qualities to consider include essentials like expertise and experience and also factors like your company's current growth stage and its marketing needs/goals.
  • Find a marketing executive recruiter who understands your vision. Each marketing executive recruiter is likely working to fill a specific position for each of their clients. Ask about the recruiter's experience completing placements for companies in your field or of similar size to your organization. Is diversity a priority in your next hire for a marketing executive? Ask about that too.
  • Diversify your strategy. Working with a marketing executive recruiter can level-up your search, but remember it's just one tool among many. If you or your organization has the capacity, consider getting out into your community (or the community where you'd like to find your next post), collaborating with your personal and professional network, and connecting with new organizations and professionals in your field. This can help you get outside of the traditional executive recruiting paradigm, broadening your potential candidate pool.

Pro tips for working with marketing executive search firms

Each marketing executive search firm has its own strengths and areas of expertise. At AboveBoard, our focus is simple: inclusion, transparency, and excellence. Our executive search platform prioritizes access and transparency so that both hiring companies and seasoned executives can easily identify candidates and opportunities in their executive sales & marketing recruitment efforts.

Here are some best practices and strategies to help you hire your next marketing executive:

  • Invest in marketing executive recruiting. Marketing executives can tell between commonplace job posts and postings from actual executive recruiters. That was the case for Kelly Hopping who secured her role as CMO at HYCU, Inc. via AboveBoard. Hopping said she saw "a mix of brands that I knew, up-and-coming VC-backed organizations and private equity-funded brands" on AboveBoard's platform, all listings from executive recruiters themselves. "And the fact that it's all targeted to women and minorities made me think I already had a natural filter on the companies posting—that these were companies who care about hiring great people, diverse talent, broad thinking." For hiring companies, the lesson here is to be intentional about where you engage in your executive sales & marketing recruitment efforts. It can speak volumes to candidates.
  • Make your value proposition clear. A company's mission and values are important, and particularly so to marketing executives. After all, in many ways it's their job to advocate for the mission and values your organization stands for. If you want to find the right marketing executive for your company, it's essential you make your value proposition clear. What do you stand for? And is that clear to prospective candidates? For Sara Gelenberg-Field, discovering Mommy's Bliss on AboveBoard piqued her interest. But it was the organization's culture and values that ultimately led her to her role as CMO.
  • Champion marketing at your organization. Being part of a mission-driven team matters to marketing executives. Just as important as this is the presence of a founder or CEO who believes in and supports marketing. That's what helped seal the deal for Teresa Mueller who landed her role as Head of Marketing at Form Health through AboveBoard. 

Hire your next marketing executive on AboveBoard

At AboveBoard, we're flipping the executive recruitment paradigm to an open and fair model that prioritizes diversity, equity, and inclusion. Our two-sided platform offers a high-quality, efficient, and affordable process for hiring companies while also offering access and transparency to executives and board members searching for their next post. Join AboveBoard today for a simple, effective, and diverse approach to executive searches in marketing.

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AboveBoard is an executive hiring platform that connects qualified executives with board and full-time opportunities. We are expanding access for underrepresented groups of executives—particularly Black, Latinx, and women. To join visit

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