Warren Buffet knows that fortunes are made in economic slow-downs. In fact, last month he surpassed Bill Gates as the wealthiest man in the U.S. In September, when your portfolio was shriveling, his was exploding. If some people are going to grow through these times, why can’t it be you? It can. In fact, if you vow to come through this thing no matter what, your company will likely be one of the toughest, not to mention that many of your competitors will fold and you’ll be left standing in a position of strength.

So what can you do to help make it through this economy? Here are 5 rules for surviving.

1. When everyone else is rolling up into a little ball like a hedgehog, fight.

If you’re the only one who’s still marketing, you’ll be the only player on the field. Advertising rates will drop as more and more people pull out of the game. Take advantage of the lower costs and maintain your presence. After all, when is marketing more needed? When business is good or bad?

2. Tighten your belt in places where it counts.

Did you know that if you can save $.10, that’s actually the equivalent of having to earn $1. If you can literally trim a few costs here and there, you can eliminate the need to bring in thousands in sales.

3. Test your marketing and only keep what works.

This is one of those things that you should be doing even when times aren’t tough but now’s the time to re-double your efforts and test, test, test. Only by testing your campaigns will you know what works and what doesn’t. When things are tight, why spend money on anything that’s not working.

4. Turn to marketing tactics with the highest ROI.

Studies have shown again and again that two things have the highest ROI: public relations and search engine optimization. Both tend to yield great results that are superior to advertising but SEO consistently blows all other forms of marketing away when it comes to bang for your buck.

5. Be creative.

Let the fight or flight mentality work for you. Thrive on the pressure. Enjoy the adrenaline. All of these things can actually help you to be more creative and come up with tactics that are out of the box. Remember there are no hard and fast rules. Just be creative.

To your continued success.