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We’re built to support growing companies.

Maybe your business is at a growth plateau where you’ve experienced early success, but you now want to deliver a unified experience that your customers, clients and team want to be part of.

As a business owner, you’ve put in the hard work to get your business to where it is today. But what about tomorrow? How are you positioned for growth?

Achieving success starts by aligning your business strategy and goals with your Marketing and HR. You’ve built the pillars for your business, and now it’s time to invest in a human-centric approach that positions your company for future growth.


It all starts with aligned goals through our Lift Strategic Planning.

Lift Strategic Planning

During Lift, we dig into your business. What are your goals? What obstacles are you trying to solve? What opportunities do you want to capture? We’ll talk about the present and future of your business and how to deploy Marketing and HR to help you get there. At the end of the Lift program, you’ll walk away with a Marketing + HR strategy and other foundational pieces that bring clarity to your business.

Everyone on the same page

Lift is where we get gritty, and make sure everyone’s on the same page, We unpack any major strategic shifts that may be in the plan from a business perspective through the lens of marketing and Human Resources. Trust us, we’ve been in the room of highly confidential business discussions around business expansion, new markets, new products, changes in people philosophy and approach, financial shifts, and we speak the lingo, because we’re business owners and entrepreneurs too.

Whether it’s an external market opportunity, a client health and retention initiative, a merger, positioning your company for sale, we’ve sat in the room with business leaders and are able to understand the impact that considering major business initiatives through a Marketing and Human Resources lens can present.

A unified strategy and plan for growth

Having Marketing + HR in the room uncovers opportunities that business owners may have previously overlooked. We help you understand the impact your business can achieve when viewed through the lens of Marketing and Human Resources.

Our retainer consists of two parts

Marketing/HR Budget
Strategic Projects Budget
Total Budget

Marketing/HR Budget (Hourly Budget): Based on your estimated needs, we set a reserve budget based on strategy, advisory, and implementation. This budget will be reported every quarter, and if you need to top up, cool, we can do that. If we over estimated, we can repurpose an hourly budget into your strategic projects.

Strategic Projects (Flat Budget): These are major initiatives that have their own plan, budget, timeline, and team that are estimated as flat-rate projects.

Your Total Budget: The total of Marketing/HR Budget + Strategic Projects = your total budget for the year. We then amortize it over a 12-month period to give you cash-flow consistency.

Sample Retainer

*(Note: Just an example with made up numbers to illustrate how the retainer works… don’t hold us to them).

Marketing Retainer
(Example Only)

(Billed Hourly)

Strategy, Advisory and Ongoing Marketing Implementation throughout the year, both planned and unplanned.

  • Complete Rebrand Strategy and Brand Development

  • Employee Engagement Platform

$18,000* Total

Total: $24,000* amortized
over 12 months = $2,000*/Month

HR Retainer
(Example Only)

(Billed Hourly)

Developing HR strategy and supporting it throughout the year with ongoing advisory, soundboarding, and compliance support.

  • HRIS Implementation

  • Employment Branding

  • Management Training Program

$18,000* Total

Total: $24,000* amortized
over 12 months = $2,000*/Month

A bit more about Strategic Brand Marketing and HR Projects

With your foundation of Brand Marketing or Human Resources in place, there will be major initiatives identified in Lift that support your business goals and objectives for the year that we categorize as Strategic Projects. Typical strategic projects for growth companies are listed below

Marketing Strategic Projects

These projects are major initiatives that will have their own unique strategy, brief, budget, timeline, project management and deliverables.

Brand Messaging Platform

Employee Engagement Platform

Content Marketing Strategy

Lead Gen Campaign

Audience Personas

Marketing Audit

Brochure Development


Campaign (Product/Service)

Social Media Community Management

Community Engagement Strategy

Strategy Development

Community Initiative

Webinar Strategy

CX Program

Podcast Strategy

Customer Journey Mapping

Investor Communications

Digital Strategy

Digital Marketing Foundations

Website Strategy and Concepting

Employment Brand

Customer NPS

Event Strategy

HR Strategic Projects

These projects are major initiatives that will have their own unique strategy, brief, budget, timeline, project management and deliverables.

HRIS Implementation

Professional Development Plan

Benefits Review

Internal Communications Plan

Payroll Management

Social Media Governance

Performance Management

Growth Planning

Stay Interviews

New Leader/Manager Training

Annual Reviews

Termination Support

Management Training

Employee Engagement Platform

Onboarding/Offboarding Process

Core Values Development

HR Tech Stack Audit

EOS HR Implementation

Recruitment Support

Accountability Chart Development

Employee Journey Mapping

DEI Advisory

Employment Branding

Frequently Asked Questions

An approach to payment that makes even the most seasoned Accounts Payable person happy.

Whether you choose us for Brand Marketing, Human Resources or both, your annual budget is a combination of your budget and any strategic projects for the year. That total is amortized over 12 months, so you have clarity on how your investment will impact your cash flow and forecasting.

So why hire Forward Level vs working with freelancers?

Freelancers can be a great resource for businesses that need immediate help with a specific task or project that requires a particular skill set. At our core, we really are just a group of highly organized freelancers who bring the full marketing skillset together and manage it so you don't have to. For example, a graphic designer can quickly knock out a brochure layout, but who's writing the content? A writer can write brochure copy but may not have design skills to do the layout. Suddenly, you're project managing two consultants who need to be collaborating on the same project. We have a full in-house team that works together all the time, so they can get the same project done quicker, and with less project management on your side, it makes the entire process seamless for you.

Love the idea of working with Forward Level, but I don't want to be locked into a contract.

Most companies that promise no contracts as a benefit of choosing them over a firm like ours typically work the same way as we do. We're upfront about our retainers, and you are free to go whenever you want (with a bit of notice of course). We settle up and ensure you're set up with everything you need to keep your marketing going. So why do we sign a retainer agreement? When we start with our clients, we outline a scope of work for a 12- or 24-month period, along with a budget to complete the work. From there, we work with you to confirm the budget, then we amortize the total cost over either a 12- or 24-month period to give you consistency in payment. We're business owners too, and we know the importance of forecasting your cash flow, and our model provides consistency for business owners.

What if our priorities change throughout the year but we have a plan that we've agreed to?

Shifts happen in business. We get it. While we outline a scope of work with you through our LIFT strategic planning, we know strategies and business priorities can shift quickly. While something might be essential today, it might not be in nine months. Each month, we meet with you for a Rolling Quarter meeting to review progress over the past four weeks and look at what's ahead for the next eight weeks. Each quarter we meet with our clients for a Strategic Alignment Session to review progress on the marketing plan, make any necessary shifts, prioritize and move forward.

We want to partner with a marketing firm, but I don't want to create more work for myself.

Marketing typically is added to someone’s responsibilities in a business, and the idea of working with four-five external consultants means repeating the same information over and over again. As your marketing department, we work with our clients, so we take this piece off your plate. Our team is everything from your CMO, marketing manager, project manager and a full team of marketing specialists to do the work we plan out during LIFT. Sure, we need your input on what we do, but we work to make your life easier.

We don't want any surprise costs to pop up throughout the year.

We pride ourselves on absolute transparency. If new significant work comes up that you want us to work on, we gather all the info, collaborate with you on what's involved and the costs, and only proceed when we get the green light from you.

We've worked with other marketing firms so I'm a bit skeptical about going down that road again.

Businesses vary and differ from each other. We are a very transparent human group. We want to be treated as a peer and in return, promise absolute clarity every step of the way. We thrive on feedback, honesty, and respect. We also work hard to give you a genuinely human experience where you feel you receive value at every turn. While we can't erase the past (don't we wish we could), there's always a leap of faith and trust that comes with working with a new team. We highly recommend speaking with our clients, who will give you a completely unvarnished review of our relationship. It's a big decision and commitment on your part, and we want you to feel like you made the right decision.