Since Facebook’s explosion in popularity there has been a mass exodus of mostly ordinary users from MySpace while a lot of bands/musicians still maintain and advertise their profiles on the struggling network. Since a large part of the audience has turned their attention elsewhere, is it that bands remain to promote themselves to each other or does MySpace still hold some relevance for the music industry?
I think MySpace had it right when in response to Facebook’s boom they created MySpace Music. There are still millions of social networkers who love music and are looking for the best possible interaction with it and MySpace Music offered them the opportunity to “Discover new bands and artists, watch music videos, get tour dates, music, news, other fans, and more.” It was a solid move because connecting fans to musicians is something they’ve always done well, and because Facebook is just not that friendly for musicians or music lovers.
What was Good about MySpace
MySpace has always been the go to networking site for bands who wanted exposure, because it had traffic, and it allows the kind of control over how your profile looks that allows fans a truer sense of your personality. In a market where everybody is juggling for attention, being able to do things which allow you to stand out are always preferable. MySpace also offers greater functionality, there is a built in player that allows you to upload your music directly to your profile, as opposed to Facebook where you need to house the content someplace else and filter it to your Facebook page. And with the addition of different codes to your profile you have greater control over what apps to add and how they look.
MySpace vs other Music Networking Sites.
However, the downside of catering to the music market is MySpace found itself sandwiched between Facebook and music networking sites such as ReverbNation and GarageBand. These sites had been perfecting the craft of catering to the promotion of musicians and networking within the business while MySpace had been offering it as a side dish. By the time MySpace got to the music networking game, their site traffic had already fallen to Facebook, and they were losing their only advantage of being a much larger network – the asset that made them desirable in the first place. As of January this year MySpace was showing a continuing drop in traffic, down 36%.
MySpace Vs. Facebook. Myspace Loses. Becomes a place just for storage?
While Facebook may not allow you the same tools MySpace does, partnering your music specific profile on another network with your Facebook gives you the benefit of both traffic volume and functionality. With Facebook simply because of their massive membership of over 600 million people, musicians can start a Facebook Fan Page, build a community around their brand and use the custom page options, third party music applications to communicate and leverage their fanbase. Jamaican and Caribbean Artists have seized this opportunity – from the late Bob Marley who’s Fan Page has over 21 million fans and the enfant terrible Vybz Kartel at the other end of our music spectrum with over 110,000 fans. The fact is, a musician must go where they know their fans are spending time. MySpace is losing, Facebook is winning, not a hard decision to make on where to position oneself.
And with recent news that MySpace Music’s CEO stepped down and the site may be up for sale it doesn’t seem like there is much of a chance MySpace will be swooping to revolutionize anything about the way music industry networks with each other and with fans. In fact
MySpace seems relevant now only as a simple tool for storing your content in a pretty package users can go look at from a Facebook link.