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Written In Stone

These 10 commandments may be the answer to your marketing prayers.

When you start your business, get ready for certain unavoidable expenditures. From renting office space and leasing equipment to purchasing pens, paper and computer disks, smart entrepreneurs carefully map out both fixed and variable expenses. But the primary difference between successful business owners and those who close their doors within a few months or years is their dedication to an appropriate and consistent marketing effort.

Marketing isn't an optional expense. Although it's often the first budget line to be sliced and diced when cash flow is low, it's important to remember marketing your business is often the activity that turns tough times around. Abiding by the following ten commandments of marketing can help you avoid the pitfalls of many start-up marketers and guide you in getting the good word out about your product or service.

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Gwen Moran is a freelance writer and co-author of The Complete Idiot's Guide to Business Plans (Alpha, 2010).

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This article was originally published in the July 1999 print edition of Entrepreneur with the headline: Written In Stone.

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