This is a perfect case example of how online presence can be a huge resource for early-stage businesses, and one that is often not considered important until too late.
Although we are still very early stage, we are active on Twitter, Facebook, Google+ and Flickr, as well as consistent drive-bys on Quora, LinkedIn and other sites where we find information of interest to us.
Spending 15mins a day on the basics – buffering some tweets, answering a few questions, calling for action – makes a difference. Without a level of visibility, you are already editing yourself out of public discourse. You would be surprised how much trust can be built just by showing consistent activity in the company social media. At this point in time having a full-blown marketing campaign and strategy is unlikely – basic product/service housekeeping takes precedence every time. But the fantastic thing about these social media platforms is that you can make it as simple or as complicated as you wish.
If you just pop up once a day with a question, a friendly greeting, a comment on a current issue this will create an important visage: activity and action; caring about what the public thinks; a willingness to engage; warmth; a promise of human contact and not robot responses; a penchant for sharing knowledge and appreciating the thought leaders in your fields of business and expertise.