If you haven’t heard, MySpace has had a bit a comeback. And though it may not have quite the $580 million luster it did 2005, the platform has had a resurgence.
According to its owner, Specific Media, MySpace:
- Reached 50.6MM unique visitors in Nov. 14 (up 575% YOY)
- Still has access to over 1B emails globally, including over 465MM in the U.S.
- Has handled $5 billion in ad transactions for a set of beta advertisers Since launching the Advertising Cloud suite of products in the last seven months
The resurgence cannot be pinned to one action alone, but has instead been created by combining a number of variables:
- Makeover into an arts & entertainment centric social platform
- New found receptivity among young, niche audience (17-25s)
- Repeat visits to find old photos driven by “Throwback Thursday”
MySpace knows it can’t build a social site on #TBT nostalgia, so it has invested a lot into cultivating a new audience and building a library of unique and sponsored content for them to consume.
Intrigued, I decided to sign up and explore the new MySpace.
When you arrive at the MySpace’s new landing page, it almost feels more like an entertainment news site than a social platform.
If you decide to register, MySpace has created a new user segmentation framework that caters to users’ specific creative backgrounds and interests. A note to those who register, if you choose to speed up the registration process by linking a Facebook or Twitter account be prepared to consent to a whole lot of data-mining. You also consent to give MySpace posting rights to share on your behalf… something I certainly was not willing to do at this stage.
New registration flow that segments users by creative interest.
The new approach to profiles is slick and feels distinct, albeit a little sparse. Important to note, “Tom” is no longer your friend.
Profiles feel quite different than most other social platforms out there.
But a new account should be sparse right? So I went to create my first post. After selecting that I wanted to share a song, I searched for a track that (surprisingly) could not be found in MySpace’s library.
I posted my track, but my profile remained a bare snare drum. Where did the post go? Evidently into a new “Stream” feed that takes a typical “News Feed” and flips it horizontally. This creates a weird and confusing experience. Why wouldn’t my post appear on my actual profile?
MySpace’s “Stream” attempts to create a content feed of posts and activity by users, including curated content. But the experience leaves something to be desired.
Why It’s Hot
So the new MySpace.com is major departure from its lineage. Focused on content catered to a niche community of artists, musicians and content creators, the site doesn’t feel like it’s made for everyone. And I think that’s part of its appeal. Specific Media has the business data to show there is still life in the faded platform, and with strong focus on content MySpace might be able to retake the sought after “creative” social arena. MySpace is certainly not the first to try its hand in this space, but for advertisers their mounds of user data may distinguish the platform from the competitors. But more than ads, MySpace needs to expand the reach of its rich content to beyond the walls of MySpace if it wants to break away from the site’s still tarnished reputation.