As we enter a beautiful Fall/Winter season, I know I’ll end up using the excuse of “preparing for hibernation” when stuffing myself at holiday parties and dinners. But the truth is that I’m not preparing for a long slumber; I’m actually in the process of waking up from one- just like everyone else.

“What slumber?” you ask? The Great Recession, my friends. Like a bear waiting out the cold of winter, companies of all sizes have been keeping safe and warm in their proverbial “caves” (those that were lucky enough to make it before the blizzard hit, that is).

 So, like bears awakening from their extended nap time, we’re hungry. The storm of the economy is on its way out and sunny days are just around the corner. Whether you’re in retail, manufacturing, service, or logistics, now is the time to stretch and thrive again.

Wikipedia provides a great definition of hibernation that I feel draws a perfect analogous relation to our current economic climate: animals conserve energy and food when supplies are limited just like companies. The most intriguing part of this analogy is when it supposes that “the animal’s slowed metabolic rate … leads to a reduction in body temperature and not the other way around.”

Similarly, I believe that it is our slowed consumption rate that lowers the temperature of the economy- not the other way around.

 If this is the case, then the question remains: how do we pick it back up? How does a company, with little to no resources left, escape from their cave and enter the sunlight again? It is by the promise of a feast.

When a bear awakens, he goes to the shallow stream. He jumps right in the middle of the flopping salmon and eats until he can’t eat any more. In the same light, it’s time for us to find the shallow water and begin our feast!

The shallow water is different for each company. For some it’s exhibiting at a tradeshow and for others, it’s hosting a highly publicized sale. As with any promotion of your company, there must be proper planning, executing, follow-up, and measuring.

It’s time for companies to unleash their marketing team to come up with a plan of attack, from cradle to cradle- a never-ending cycle of creating interest and developing leads. Invest in your future by expanding your business, not by hiding in the cave.