So you have finally figured out SEO and figured you were in the game now, right? Wrong! Like technology, online marketing has one up on you again! The latest buzz is SMO – Social Media Optimization. Social media networking, when done correctly, can drive huge amounts of targeted traffic to your website.

The good news is that many of you may already be doing it. SMO is the use of Twitter, Facebook, LinkedIn and other social networking sites to promote and draw attention to your company and your services or products. Why social networking? Because the old ground rules still apply, people buy from people they know, like and trust.

If you’re a Facebook user, you know that there are tons of groups and fan pages on the site to become a part of – and the user does so at will. For instance, on my profile you will see I've added Wordpress, Microsoft Office and – among others on Facebook. They are companies whose products I enjoy, who I trust and who I want information from to see what is new with their products.

As entrepreneurs, we can do the same thing. Most of us are not as big as Microsoft or even – but we can invite and offer something to those who may be able to use our services. We can offer something new, something exciting and something different – right there in the moment! Those who are listening to the buzz we create will be doing so willingly (unlike the Facebook ads that pop up beside our friends and family on our Home page). This is the same for Twitter, Digg and the other social sites out there that help us connect with our target market.

Social media can be a successful component in your marketing plan. The key in this is not to get followers on a social site and then hit them in the face with your product or service! And you need to participate! Give them something so that they want to get to know you better and along the way, they will want to see what else you have to offer. Engage with them and then they will get interested in you and what you are selling!

Author's Bio: 

Hilary Brooks, Founder of AVirtualEdge, can help manage your social media campaigns. AVirtualEdge is a virtual online assistant company that specializes in providing Internet marketing support to entrepreneurs and small businesses.