If the recession has left you with more time than money, Ilise Benun and Anne Mascelli, of Creative Marketing & Management, in Hoboken, N.J., suggest you spend it promoting your business. Here are three ideas that require no more than imagination and a little pocket change:
* Donate products or services to industry trade associations or nonprofit groups. Jacqueline Moore, CEO of Ridgaway Philips, a home nursing company, serves on the development committee of a Multiple Sclerosis Society chapter and recently donated her nurses' time to speak about how to care for MS patients. She has earned exposure for Ridgaway and will soon discuss the possibility of a contract with the society.
* Exchange leads and information with noncompeting entrepreneurs in your market. Last year, as Ken Potter, president of Martin's Potato Chips Inc., was designing a new facility, his son, vice-president Ken Potter Jr., visited 60 other chip factories to get ideas.
* Expand your professional network. Mike Voisin, general manager of Motivatit Seafoods Inc., in Houma, La., didn't have much clout with government regulators. But since he's become active in some 17 trade associations and industry councils, he's built alliances to help change regulations to benefit Motivatit and other seafood processors.
-- Researched by Teri Lammers