Is your online presence like a dodgy dentist’s drill?

The Facebook status update was horrifying. Somebody had been in a dentist’s and got out of there as soon as possible after the dentist started calling her teeth “toes”. It was a candid camera moment surely, except there was no Jeremy Beadle or Mike Murphy or one of the Naked Camera team to jump out from behind a curtain. The unhappy patient got out of the dentist’s chair and made a status update enroute to the next dentist. (There were other factors to consider like the dentist’s equipment breaking down and also the fact he thought the patient needed something serious done there and then, when a second opinion later differed completely, opting for a less serious and inexpensive solution).

The most interesting thing about it all is that the disturbed patient in question wrote about the dentist: “The fact that their website is a facebook page should have had me on awares!”

Lately, I had been of the opinion, in a bid to get all the businesses in the town of New Ross online, that Facebook pages would be a good stepping stone to an online presence where businesses didn’t have the resources for a website.

But maybe I was wrong. Because it seems, in this case at least, that your online presence is like a dodgy dentist’s drill. We may be talking about the fact that the dentist’s drill was dodgy but people may think we’re talking about drill belonging to a dodgy dentist. (Nevermind the fact the drill could have cost a lot of money – it’s also important to keep in mind that some organisations do go to a lot of expense in developing a Facebook page, so they’re not as cheap/free/inexpensive as a consumer might think).

Does a cheap (inexpensive) online presence cheapen the opinion clients and potential clients have of you? Is Facebook or a Google Local entry enough? Is it better to be online anyway and get in a few customers that way and risk comments like the above? What do you think?