Social media marketing is a big part of search engine optimization. With the explosion of sites like Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn, Tumblr, Pinterest, Mashable,YouTube and others, social media marketing has become a staple in not only establishing your brand but also of gaining customers. What has created this change? The marketing of years ago was defined by radio, television and print ads with companies blasting you with advertising that told us they were the best, the fastest, the cheapest, the one that was right for you. With the advent of social media word-of-mouth became the new advertising mecca. Not only has social marketing become the best way to gain customers in a crowded market but the search engines like Google, Yahoo and Bing are paying attention to social media as well. If you do not engage with social media your site will be like a deserted island in the middle of the ocean.But what are people looking for when they come to your social media sites? Well similar to a blog your social sites should be informative about your brand, your company, the ownership, the services or products it provides, but should also engage them in other ways as well. People love entertainment. So stories that people can relate to or engage with are a big plus to have within your flock of social media accounts. There is nothing stronger than a personal recommendation from a friend. And that’s what these social media sites are doing. They are basically networking your company with all their friends and associates across the cyber world. Never before has the opportunity been so great as to get your name and your brand and all the data that you would like to present in front of a willing audience. If you do it correctly your social media can make you popular amongst many different types of people. This will allow you to target market those clients that are specifically looking for your product or service. You may not know it but YouTube is the second largest search engine in the world. Not surprising since it is owned by Google. So when you post, when you share, when you provide good content to your social media sites you are gaining users and helping your sites rank. All by engaging people which in turn will make you popular which in turn will help your marketing which in turn will help you in the search engines like Google and Yahoo as well as all the others.If you want to rank your sites you must engage with social media. Without the social signals coming from your social media your sites will not reach the top of the search engines. So how important is social media? Let’s just say that social media is probably one of the most important items that you can provide that will help you rank.