No, that’s not a typo. And no, it’s not 2005.
MySpace may be a thing of the past, but it’s being reincarnated as… Myspace. Maybe not the most original name, but that little “s” is bringing along some big changes.
The New Myspace
The Huffington Post reports that the new Myspace (the little “s” version) was officially launched to the public on June 12, 2013 under new management. This comes after it was acquired in 2011 for $35 million by Specific Media. According to International Digital Times, the beta version of the new Myspace was first launched in late 2012 with the support of musical artist Justin Timberlake, who is also one of the company’s investors. Now it is officially open for business.
Chris Vanderhook, COO of Specific Media and one of Myspace’s new owners, told the Huffington Post that Myspace’s targeted users are artists, photographers, DJ’s, and of course musicians age 13 to 30. That includes everyone from hopefuls all the way up to popular artists like Lady Antebellum and Lil Wayne.
The site is positioning itself as a “hub” for artists, a kind of one-stop-shop for music if you will. Because artists spend a lot of time updating Twitter, Facebook and YouTube sites, Myspace is hoping to become the one central place for artists to post and update content. Vanderhook wants Myspace to feel like “home,” according to International Digital Times.
MyRadio and the Mobile App
MySpace (the capital “S” version) was always big on music, and even helped launch the careers of some of today’s hottest artists such as Owl City, reports International Digital Times. The new Myspace is no different; so it is only logical that some version of an Internet radio feature would be a part of the new platform. However, unlike other sites such as Pandora that use an algorithm to log users’ tastes and preferences, stations on Myspace are made entirely by users themselves, reports Mashable.
For example, you could listen to Justin Timberlake’s station which features his music, as well as any collaborations and music that inspired him. But it doesn’t have to be a popular artist. Every user can create a station. The goal is to make music and the music discovery process more social, says Mashable.
These stations are available through the desktop version, as well as the free app for iOS devices, which in itself is a major change for Myspace and may be what really gets the ball rolling.
Additionally, the mobile app has a GIF creator so users can create and share animations. Mashable reports that Vanderhook noticed GIFs’ popularity but that people were having a hard time with them. Now, Vanderhook says, they will be as easy to create as taking a picture.
Ad Campaign, Will It Work?
Through a $20 million advertising campaign, Myspace executives are hoping to perk peoples’ interest in the site. The campaign will stretch across television, radio, and of course online. The first commercials began airing June 13th, and the full versions can be found online. Hopefully the campaign will be enough to bring the social media site back to life.
But the campaign has a lot of work to do. The Huffington Post reports that Myspace currently has 30 million global monthly users, which sounds promising, right? But just to provide you with a little perspective, Twitter has close to 200 million, and Facebook has a mammoth 1.1 billion.
Vanderhook even admits there is nothing they can do marketing-wise that will make Myspace an overnight sensation. But everyone remains hopeful that the new Myspace will gain popularity over time. Who knows? Maybe people are ready to kick it old school again.
About the author: Andrew loves covering the latest in social media and technology. He has been blogging for years and currently works at Phoenix Technology Solutions.