People have always congregated in communities, and for many good reasons: it builds confidence, can create part of your identity, and provides a sense of belonging. Not to mention that being a part of something that is bigger than yourself drives people to be more active.
Marketing your business online is like marketing it in the real world -- if you can't convince customers to come to your store, you bring your merchandise to them. You have to be dynamic and sensitive to the market.
But alas, in the real world even the smallest business owner needs to realize that we are in a co-dependent relationship with office holders in our cities, counties, states and even at the head office in Washington, DC.