During the earlier years of the World Wide Web, through the 80's, internet's true potential was unrealized due to the limitations of technology, connectivity and speed in communication as well the fact that the use of connected PC's was limited to a smaller social demographic. With the advent of new technology in computing and communication, the era of interactivity dawned on the world of the web, ushering in the age of web2.0 as we know it today.

The use of internet as a social interaction tool took the world by storm. The rapid rise in popularity, first of e-groups, then of personal social WebPages and now social media websites being used by people all over the world has opened up a new dimension of marketing possibilities in the world or e-commerce as well. Social Media Marketing (SMM) is the answer to using this popularity to advance your e-business and take your company's marketing effectiveness to a global scale in the global village; to people who are using social media based websites (like facebook, social bookmarking & Video networking sites).

The type of website usually defines the demographic of its members in terms of age, areas of interest and even commercial activity. The popularity of the website itself is translated into the reach of your marketing efforts.

The following are typical steps taken to launch a consolidated marketing campaign over the social media spectrum:

> Select relevant social media websites to be targeted.

> Plan and Design the marketing Strategy for targeted web audience.

>Gather or create unique content; including descriptions of products or services and videos etc to post on the websites.

> Create corporate/personal profiles on websites and presenting unique content there.

> Send friendship/joining requests to members belonging to the targeted demographic for your profiles and communities.

>Create Blogs and direct traffic towards them in order to increase participation.

>Target existing e-communities which are relevant to your purpose and participate in discussions through regular postings and provide links to quality content.

The following results can be expected from making a concerted and dedicated effort in SMM:

>Targeted and relevant traffic is attracted.

>Global or localized marketing reach is accomplished.

>Inexpensive advertisement and even free publicity.

>increased lead generation through people landing on your page, and therefore more sales.

>Product/services promotion through the ability to send Emails/newsletters through which you may announce latest offers and packages.

>Popularize and publicize the launch of new products or services.

>Gather available Email addresses from contacts on social media websites to compile a list of potential clients.

Efforts in SSM will yield results only if the effort is comprehensive and persistent. The results may take a long time or a short amount of time, depending upon the intensity of the campaign and generally upon the number of profiles and communities that are created for the purpose. Building personal business contacts also helps, with many virtual members aware of your services and passing your name to others through the best kind of marketing technique 'the word of mouth'.

Author's Bio: 

Allen Anderson - LiveAdmins

LiveAdmins is Chicago, US based company providing Live Support and Sales Services for the last seven years. Moving with the growing trends of e-commerce and online businesses the company has also started providing online marketing services and social media marketing services in June 2007.