Social media marketing (SMM) is a form of internet marketing which seeks to achieve branding and marketing communication goals through the participation in various social media networks. Social Media covers the activities around social interaction, content, videos, images and audio exposure.

Social media itself is a catch-all term for sites that may provide radically different social actions, allowing individuals to interact with one another and build relationships, for example, Twitter is a social site designed to let people share short messages with others. Facebook, on the other hand, is a full-blown social networking site that allows for sharing updates, photos, joining events and a variety of other activities. When products or companies join those sites, people can interact with the product or company. That interaction feels personal to users because of their previous experiences with social networking site interactions.

Social networking sites and blogs allow individual followers to “retweet” or “repost” comments made by the product being promoted. By repeating the message, all of the users are able to see the message and reach more people. Social networking sites act as word of mouth. Because the information about the product is being put out there and is getting repeated, more traffic is brought to the product or company.

Through social networking sites, products/companies can have conversations and interactions with individual followers. This personal interaction can instill a feeling of loyalty into followers and potential customers. In many respects, blogs can serve as an extension of traditional media. Review copies may be sent to traditional media outlets like newspapers and magazines, they can also be sent to popular blogs on the subject.

Blogs also offer the opportunity to put together ‘virtual tours’. For example, many authors have gravitated towards having virtual book tours, which allows them to reach their fans without the travel expenses. These virtual book tours can include author interviews and Q&A sessions as well as book reviews and book giveaways.

There is also the act of tagging, which is bookmarking a website to social bookmarking websites. This will show others that you approve of this site and they will check it out, making viral traffic. To include social media optimization tagging on your site, you can add tagging links. Also, adding the tagging links to other pages on the website, besides the homepage, and allowing visitors to click the tag button, will be helpful to visitors to find something they want from a list of relevant tags and notes.

One thing all visitors appreciate is honesty. With social media optimization you should include links to other websites that will help your visitor reach their goal or find the information they want. By linking to competitors or information not created by you, you reap the benefits of having the more information on a particular topic. Having a lot of information will make more people want to link to you because you have gathered all information about the topic to one location.