Social Media Marketing (SMM) is the new hype in the internet marketing world today. Most businesses are only realizing now what it could do for them even though it has been around for a while.

What do most businesses do wrong when stepping for the first time into the social media arena? They don’t have set objectives and usually they lack an overall plan. They don’t know who their target audience is and they don’t know how they will broadcast their message to specific groups, communities, etc.

Social media is big online, very big. It is important for any business to integrate this new trend onto their existing internet marketing plan and strategy. They go hand in hand and compliment each other. To market via Social Media is all about building trust and credibility together with making your name more visible online.

As with any marketing plan, there needs to be a set of objectives and a goal. Find below a couple of points on how you can begin your Social Media Marketing plan.

It’s all about people

With social media you can reach targeted customers. Who are they? What are their interests and where are they coming from? What types of social media will your targeted users likely use? If you’re targeting college students, use social networks. If you’re reaching out business travelers, consider ratings and reviews.

What is your objectives?

What do you want to accomplish with social media? Do you only want to make your business and brand more visible online? Do you want to influence people? Build trust and credibility? Let your customers talk about your brand? It’s very important to decide on your objectives before you decide on which technologies to use.

Strategy

How will things be different after you have stepped into the Social Media Marketing arena? Do you want to build a closer, two-way relationship with your customers? Do you only want people to talk about your brand, services or products that you offer? For the best results, plan on how you can integrate social media for future marketing as well.

Which technologies to use?

After you have decided on the people you would like to reach, objectives and strategy, decide on the best technologies to use. Should you be using a blog, which software will you be using? Are you going to use YouTube, Twitter or Facebook? Perhaps you will want to form a niche community? There are hundreds of social media technologies and websites found on the internet. Research and plan which technologies you will be using.

Social Media Marketing takes time and dedication for optimal exposure. Often the results from social media out weights the time and cost spent on it.