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Out of Season

Strategies for surviving the downtime in a cyclical business

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This story appears in the June 2010 issue of Entrepreneur. Subscribe »

Next month, Matt Kersten will be up to his neck in Christmas cards. The founder of Kersten Cards, a Scottsdale, Ariz., greeting card company, says 80 percent of his 4,000 orders per year are Christmas cards, which typically hit between July and early December. That leaves fully half of the year with minimal orders--and scant new .

"It's definitely tough, but we do it," he says. "It's important to manage costs, and you constantly have to reinvest in your . You can't stay stagnant."

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