Budget death spiral

We're entering into the budget dance for 2009.  You know the steps:

1.  We'd like to talk with you about your services (spring)
2.  Let's schedule a meeting (summer)
2.  We're out of budget for this year.  We'll need to talk next year after we've determined our budgets (fall)
3.  We're right in the middle of our program and don't have time to talk (winter)

And back to step 1.

Here's a hint for all you marketers who are considering exploring the world of social media and alternative marketing approaches:  Leave yourself some leeway in your budget to experiment down the road.  If you spend the same amount on news releases, trade shows and collateral material that you did last year, the best you can hope for is the same result as last year.  The definition of insanity, etc.