Before you can put any of these rules to use, you may want to understand a little more about the differences between social media marketing and social media optimization.
SMM = Social Media Marketing
Social Media Marketing is strategically using the big social sites to spread your brand name or drive traffic back to your web presence.
SMO = Social Media Optimization
Social Media Optimization is adding key elements to your websites or content that make them easy to spread across the big social sites.
Rohit Bhargava Developed Social Media Optimization Rules 1, 2, 3, 4 and 5
1. Increase your linkability
Linkability is the willingness of other websites or articles to link back to your site. One way to increase your natural Google listing is to increase how many authority sites link to you, so to increase your linkability with social media optimization is to make your site more informative and useful to others. You can do this in many ways; blog, white papers, press releases, keyword targeted articles, RSS feeds, etc. This is the most important step in Social Media Optimization and should be your first priority.
2. Make tagging and bookmarking easy
The act of tagging is to bookmark the website to social bookmarking websites. For example, if you like the content or services provided at a website you tag it. 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 such as Digg, Del.icio.us, Technorati, etc. Also, add the tagging links to other pages in your site (not just the homepage) and when visitors Linkr Posts click the tag button make sure that there is a suggestion box to help your visitor list a relevant tag and notes.
3. Reward inbound links
As I mentioned before one way to increase your natural listing with Google using social media optimization is to get more back links. You can do this by rewarding people/websites that link to you (inbound links). Inbound links are links that send people to your site from somewhere else. One way to reward people for linking to your site is to have a “Recently Linked” that lists all of the websites that have linked to you.
4. Help your content travel
Social media optimization focuses on providing useful content to your market. When you publish content such as an article, video, or audio file you must help it reach as many people on the web as possible. You can do this by submitting to relevant high traffic websites. When the word gets out about your great content (no matter what format) you’ll receive backlinks to your site.
5. Encourage the mashup
To mash up is to use two websites content and mash them together. For example, YouTube makes it easy to mash their content (videos) onto your site. In addition, because it is so easy you have added a video to your site that has a YouTube logo on the video as well as a link back to you tube. So to encourage a mashup with social media optimization is to make it easy for other websites to use your content and reference it to drive traffic back to your site.
Jeremiah Owyang Developed Social Media Optimization Rules 6 and 7
6. Be a User Resource, even if it doesn’t help you.
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. Do this, even when it doesn’t benefit you. By linking to competitors or information not created by you, you reap the benefits of having the all inclusive information on a particular topic. In the end, more people will link to you because you have lumped all information (or links) on a topic on one location.