Wow, I've never seen to many small quotations before!
Everything can be a tool. Obviously, you can be the most-networked person in the world, but if your Blog software or CMS doesn't support trackbacks or comments, this will severely limit your growth rate. Conversely, if you have the most advanced SEO Wordpress template in existence but know no one, you won't have any traffic to speak of.
It's all balance. Content, Networking, Technology
And let's remember to be grateful that this technology exists
and that most of these tools are free
in the first place. Like Steve, I haven't shelled out a nickel on advertising, blogging software, or blog template. What a wonderful culture the internet fosters when so manny of these tools are freely available!
We are all content producers now. Historically, this is unprecedented, and it probably has certain higher ups a little freaked out.