Forbes.com Video Network | Open Mike: Unemployment Soars.

This is a great video discussing the current unemployment issue.  Needless to say, the outlook is bleak.  Expect thing to sag event further.  However, from the business perspective, now is the time to both maintain current customers and to find new customers.

It is critical that you keep your customers happy.  Make your current customers feel that they are important.  Call them up and build and maintain that interpersonal relationship.  Surprise them by taking them out to lunch.  Send them a card thanking them for their ongoing support.  If need be, discount a bill or two and point it out.  A small token of appreciation will go a long way.

Find inexpensive ways to reach out and find new customers.  Building interpersonal relationships is the best way.  Spend a few dollars and join a local or regional business group.  Meet people with businesses that are slightly different from yours.  People that you can trust and refer to when you cannot meet the needs of your customer.  This tactic will go a long way towards building trust and keeping customers.   Go from business to business to introduce yourself.  See what people want.  See if you can meet their needs.  You may find a customer just from listening.

Above all, be creative.  Consider all marketing tactics and use those that meet your needs, complement your style, and fit in your budget.


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