About a week ago, Myspace took a big leap forward but hardly anyone noticed. It’s part of their new owner’s push to become a “leading social entertainment destination” and you gotta give them kudos for trying. Myspace is, after all, one of the classics in social media so I’d hate to see them go down without a fight.
This new round is all about the music. In its heyday, Myspace was a haven for independent musicians and they were the ones who stuck around when everyone else packed their bags and moved to Facebook-ville.
Playing to that loyal audience, Myspace has now become the home of a powerful online music player. It allows free, unlimited, on-demand music and it instantly syncs with Facebook. That’s from the “if you can’t beat ‘em, join ‘em” school of marketing.
Here’s the new front page:
The front page also offers direct links to the music of top artists such as Katy Perry and Justin Bieber. There’s also a featured section that links to music, movie and celebrity news content.
It’s all a little dark and heavy for my taste, but I’m sure I’m not the audience they’re after.
Myspace’s big advantage is a licensing agreement with the big four record labels, Sony, Universal, EMI and Warner. They also partnered with 20,000 indie labels, which they say gives them the rights to more than 42 million songs. That’s three-times the size of any other site. Three. Triple. Amazing.
So now what? Will a boffo music player and a new leaning toward entertainment news save Myspace? Could be. I don’t believe that former Myspace users will return in droves, but I do believe that they can build an entirely new audience.
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What they need to do is delete any profile that hasn’t been used in the past three months. If those people want to come back, then can sign up for a new profile. It’s time to say out with the old and in with the new. Jazz up the profile sections so it matches the new look of the site and start making entertainment the focus of everyone’s page.
If Myspace is going to come out of this, they need to focus on their strengths and forget the rest. Say goodbye to the people who left the site two years ago and welcome in a new, hipper, younger crowd. You know, people who think Facebook was the first social network. They’ll love the new Myspace.