Can MySpace Make a Comeback in Social Media?

Thursday, October 11, 2012

By: Weston Bonnelle

Unfortunately, I think that the social media pie is sliced a bit too thin for MySpace to get full.  Although social media is saturated, MySpace could thrive as a mixed media site by offering social media while still producing traditional media. MySpace currently offers videos and articles however they don’t really have a dynamic content strategy and they lack consistently compelling media because they still view themselves dominantly as a social media site.  

It’s time for MySpace to strategically expand their brand as a stage for budding musicians, a social site for those passionate about music to connect, a venue for fans to enjoy music and an online destination for music updates. Despite MySpace’s lack of active & dedicated members - compared to other social media sites - they still have a well-known brand as a site dedicated to music. There’s always hope for a comeback when you have a well-known brand. 

Turning DeadSpace into Music Heaven

1.       Figure out how to give emerging bands a platform for attracting a fans and getting discovered.

Social media has explosive growth because people like fans, they being a part of a social group and they love becoming “internet famous.” Social media is now being used by many ambitious individuals as a stepping stone to more opportunities. MySpace needs to ponder how they can make the rise to fame easier musicians and bands. MySpace profiles should be designed so that the musicians can be viewed in the best possible light. MySpace also has radio stations with 42 million tracks that they are underutilizing. They should publicize their radio stations more often. They also should have distinct stations for music lovers to discover new bands and musicians. 

An amazing benefit to helping emerging musicians and bands is that when they become mainstream your site also grows exponentially in popularity. They attract fans that want to get closer to them through the sites that they are active on and have built their brands on. Once again, MySpace should investigate and see what areas musicians and bands struggle, such as securing exposure, and then they will be able to offer a platform that alleviates these hardships. MySpace needs to ask, “Why would bands, musicians and fans invest time in this site?”

Also, MySpace shouldn’t forget how important the mobile sector has become. Unfortunately they haven't upgraded their mobile app since July 2011.  Even if their image is tarnished online, they have a clean mobile slate. Instagram has shown the tech and business community, just how powerful mobile is. Their mobile strategy has to be innovative and exciting. What music applications can they develop that will be valuable to musical mobile users?

2.       Participate in traditional media more consistently and dynamically so that MySpace can appear in the search engine results.

MySpace has basically disappeared from the search engine results for many specific queries. When MySpace does appear in the search engine results, their content pales in comparison to the rest of the results. To the average person, that means that they are dead. Since MySpace isn’t able to sit back and let the users initiate the conversation and drive social interaction like on Facebook, MySpace will need to be proactive in starting the conversation. Once people start seeing MySpace dominating the music sector online, they will be viewed as an authority site instead of a fledging social media or social networking site. They shouldn’t view this as a social media failure; they should view this as a great chance to differentiate themselves from traditional and social media by combining the best of both elements. Being a mixed media site will also be more sustainable in the long run. MySpace should be the social Vevo or the combination of MTV & Facebook.

Methods for appearing in the search engine results

1.       MySpace Video/YouTube

MySpace’s YouTube presence is desolate and weak.  I do understand that they may not want to upload videos on a competitor site however their own section for videos is cluttered, unappealing and difficult to navigate. They seem resistant to uploading material that people want to see and are already searching for. MySpace needs to take some cues from ClevverTV (on YouTube) on how to attract views. They need to talk about what the fans and the musically inclined care about. MySpace could produce interviews with new music brands from around the country - even internationally; give us the inside scoop or background information on music videos from emerging bands & musicians; produce a YouTube reality show or contest to keep the fans coming back for more.

On MySpace’s own site, they should have more live coverage of musical performances. New Year’s Eve live coverage showcasing musical performances would be amazing. Interesting videos are guaranteed to attract a following. Let smaller bands upload music videos and curate the top videos to showcase on the site. Once you help bands become popular, more quality bands will be encouraged to follow.

2.        Entertaining Articles

MySpace is in the prime position to have an amazing music blog or music news network. Instead of faceless authors, MySpace needs to have more personable music news and blog posts. MySpace could create another personality that would effectively communicate with the music audience, connect to the fans and become an endearing figure in music. The personality should have a story, a mission and a music background.  Perhaps an active member of MySpace could be vetted to blog about music to mimic the Tila Tequila effect.

Currently MySpace has news however the articles are sparsely shared because it's not as entertaining, personable or informative as other sites. However once they learn the formula for what people want to read and MySpace articles start showing up in the search engine results for interesting queries; then people visit MySpace directly to read music news. The fact that MySpace is also a social media site will help them rise above just having articles by enabling a community to form instead of visitors that just comment and bounce back.

As long as MySpace is willing to branch out, the possibilities are limitless. MySpace's demise began when people started using the site as an all-purpose site which deviated from their original mission- to promote music and bands.  Once Facebook was created people flocked to that site due to its personable nature, clean design, lack of controversy and closed environment, which left MySpace barren. However if MySpace focus on their roots and get creative they can become a premier social media and traditional media site for music. 

Follow Analyst District on: Twitter / Facebook / Tumblr