Even in slow economies you must continue marketing. They don’t have to cost a lot. They must be consistent throughout the year. Even when you are busy, you still need to keep a baseline of activities to ensure that you will have work for the slower times of the year. Don’t get trapped into a “sell-produce” curve. This is the situation where you are selling until you find work to do. Then you are so busy doing the work that you stop selling. Once the work is over, then you start selling again. You haven’t done the activities necessary to keep a steady flow of work coming into the company.

Drip marketing can help you avoid the sell-produce curve. Drip marketing is a consistent level of marketing that you perform each month. (Like a drip coming out of a faucet…except in this case you don’t want to fix the drip!) There will be months where the activity is higher and months where it is lower. However, you are consistently doing something each month to keep your name in front of your clients and potential clients.

Drip marketing requires planning and execution. Part of your drip marketing plan will be aimed at your current clients. Keeping your company’s name in front of them is important because they are familiar with your company, you’ve already solved a problem for them, and you want them to remember to recommend you to a friend or neighbor when that person has a similar problem, or to call you again if they have another problem.

With drip marketing the key is to do SOMETHING every month. Traditional forms of marketing (print media, broadcast media, billboards, and yellow pages) can all be part of the plan. Relying totally on these methods of advertising can get very expensive and you’re never sure that you reached your client base. You probably reached some of them and some potential clients.

However, it is much better to use more personal forms of marketing. This way you know that your message at least reached your client base and potential client base. Part of the plan should be an e-mail marketing program. Sending informational e-mails once a month will help tie your clients to your company in a non-intrusive way.

One non-expensive marketing idea is to give out at least 500 business cards per year.

Newsletters are another drip marketing idea. These take more planning. However, there are several newsletter companies who will write them, print them, and mail them for you. Most will let you write some of it, (i.e. a letter from the president). However, if you are not comfortable writing anything they will take care of it all. Newsletters at most should be sent out quarterly. If you do other activities you might want to send them out only twice per year.

My favorite drip marketing technique is postcards. They don’t have to be fancy. All they need is a brightly colored paper with a message and a reason to call you printed on one side. If you consistently send out a postcard once per month with your slogan after the message, people will get used to seeing them and within a few months they will begin tying the message to your company and remember them.

Use drip marketing to avoid the sell produce curve. It takes planning. However, you will see a consistent growth in your customer base when you execute the plan.

Author's Bio: 

Ruth King is founder and Chief Evangelist for Ribbon, The Internet Broadcasting Network, and ProfitabilityChannel.com, the place business owners get the information they need to increase sales, profits, and decrease employee turnover. You can reach Ruth at rking@ontheribbon.com