* BUILD SOMETHING PEOPLE WANT - it isn't so obvious what people want though.
1. Social Bookmarking - Reddit, Digg etc
2. Add any Feeds to RSS Directories
3. Keep a blog and update at least 3-4 times a week about your industry area. We created the first Blog Carnival focusing on Journalism. That made us friends in journalism community and we got some write ups.
Interview people on your blog.
4. Network - there are countless events in which to attend here in London so there must be more in the valley. That being said, they may be crap.
5. Get mentioned in the Press or on Blogs (best way is to meet the people face to face first). Random emails seldom work.
6. Create Facebook Group, get your friends to join. After Google, Facebook is our number 1 referring site. Get your friends to add your site as one of their fav sites on their facebook profiles. We've got a lot of traffic from that.
Create Facebook App?
7. Create a Podcast? But this is a bit of an effort, prob best focus on blogging.
8. SEO! work on it from day one!
Also, put the company name in your signature whenever you send e-mails, forum or blog comments, etc..
For many/most startups, I think the best strategy is one where users generate users. Viral/widgets, word of mouth, or SEO/UGC.
Read that 10 times. ;-)
For a b2b startup, obviously that's not entirely practical...
Split users randomly so they see different landing pages for example and track the changes in conversion.
This will improve your virality as only active users spread the word.
Show it for every post to anonymous users, and only once for registration for users with accounts.
If there are small niche sites that your customers may visit, buy banner ads and post on their forums (but obviously don't spam).
1 user refered by your blog = 100 SU users