Social Media Marketing (SMM) is a set of methods for generating publicity through social media, online communities and community websites. Methods of SMO include adding RSS feeds, adding a “Digg This” button, blogging and incorporating third party community functionalities like Flickr photo slides and galleries or YouTube videos. Social media optimization is related to search engine marketing, but differs in several ways, primarily the focus on driving traffic from sources other than search engines, though improved search ranking is also a benefit of successful SMO.
Social media optimization is in many ways connected as a technique to viral marketing where word of mouth is created not through friends or family but through the use of networking in social bookmarking, video and photo sharing websites. In a similar way the engagement with blogs achieves the same by sharing content through the use of RSS in the blogsphere and special blog search engines such as Technorati.
Social Media optimization is considered an integral part of an Online Reputation Management (ORM) or Search Engine Reputation Management (SERM) strategy for organizations or individuals who care about their online presence.
Rohit Bhargava was credited with inventing the term SMO.
His original five rules for conducting Social Media Optimization are:
- Increase your linkability
- Make tagging and bookmarking easy
- Reward inbound links
- Help your content travel
- Encourage the mashup
- Get communities connected