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Secrets To Success For Creative Entrepreneurs

The key to limiting a loss is quick reassessment and recommitment to growth goals.

Wall Street predicts a one in four chance of the U.S. entering into a recession in the next year, and many small businesses are hoping and planning to ride out the next tide of a continuing soft market.

Many small businesses are finding the current business environment ever more competitive as big fish dip lower into the food chain to overcome their business losses.

The small jobs they ignored (the jobs most one-person shops thrive on) are being gobbled up to replace lost revenues from big accounts now in demise.

What can you do to protect yourself in an economic and business downturn? Here are a few tips that can help you solidify your client list:

  1. Keep in touch with clients whether they have a job in house or not. A casual lunch, a quick call or a less invasive email will renew and remind a good client of available services without pressure. It's easier to maintain a relationship than establish a new one.
  2. Call the vendors you've used most; they know who's buying and succeeding even in a slow economy. Make friends at all levels of your industry. You never know where your next job referral will come from.
  3. Maintain industry presence; even though things are slow, stay active in professional affairs. Attend that monthly meeting, press the flesh, and work for charity to show off your creative skills. 
  4. Revamp your website, then send out email announcements about the eye candy you've just displayed. Be excited about your work and that excitement will attract business.
Above all, keep working your weekly phishing schedule. Cold call new clients whether you need them or not. Successful entrepreneurs always have a few new clients ready to step in to replace those who step out. What's the real key to success? Get up and get busy - there's no time for sulking, especially when business is slow!

About the Author:

Susan Kirkland is a veteran freelancer and the author of "Start and Run a Creative Services Business", in which she shares the secrets to finding and keeping clients, negotiating successfully with vendors and protecting yourself from scoundrels and scalawags. For more information about this valuable resource for students and seasoned pros, visit Susan at www.sdkirkland.com.

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