These Numbers Prove You Haven’t Heard The Last Of Myspace
Just a few years ago, you couldn’t visit a technology blog without seeing a few posts eulogizing Myspace. Everyone recounted the same sad story: Myspace failed to keep pace with new technology; Facebook made social media accessible to everyone, and consequently Myspace sank into irrelevance. Rather than keeping its position as the Internet’s killer application, it was nothing more than a cautionary tale of what happens when you rest on your laurels. However, a recent redesign and some impressive marketing efforts might have rendered those declarations wildly premature.
The Big Redesign Gamble
In 2011 News Corp, who had bought Myspace from the original owners, sold the social network to pop star Justin Timberlake and web development company, Specific Media, for $35 Million. They immediately went to work rebuilding the once-dominant social network from the ground up. The gaudy design was swapped for something more sleek and minimalistic. In an effort to carve out its own niche instead of competing head-to-head with Facebook, Myspace focused on creating a platform for musicians, artists, and other creative people. Amongst the early adopters of the new Myspace were critically-loved band Arcade Fire and background check provider Instant Checkmate.
Despite these changes, social media lovers and tech bloggers were naturally skeptical. The Internet is already overloaded with social networks. And bright-eyed entrepreneurs with ivy league tech degrees and mountains of venture capital seem to create a new one every week. Can Myspace, a site that once got more traffic than even Google, recover even a fraction of its former glory in an environment that is way more hostile than when it was first founded a decade ago?
The data says yes. According to analytics site Compete, Myspace’s numbers indicate that it’s beginning to compete with the big boys of social media again. In defiance of the skeptics, It has more unique visitors than LinkedIn or even Twitter. While the number of visitors have remained stagnant throughout most of the last couple years, recent months have seen a noticeable increase. Myspace might have finally reached the tipping point that will allow it to be taken seriously as a social networking platform again.
Its continued success will hinge on two things: its ability to distinguish itself from other social networks and capturing youths who might not be so enchanted with Facebook. As Facebook matures, it may be seen as a social network where older people (including their parents) hang out. Myspace will give teens and millennials a great chance to connect with their own demographic.
No doubt the people who were behind the redesign are breathing a sigh of relief right now. A lot of cash and talent was poured into reanimating Myspace, and the number of social media lovers who are visiting the site is finally on the upswing. Of course, the new Myspace should take a lesson from the downfall of the old Myspace: the fact that things are looking bright is not an excuse to stop innovating.
Roger Carlson is a blogger from Santa Ana, California. He writes about social media, marketing, and online content.