Social media’s rise began in the early 2000s. The millennial generation found purpose on the Internet by way of social networking websites. All thanks to Tom. From 2005 to 2008, MySpace reigned supreme. MySpace was the most visited social networking site in the world, even surpassing Google in June of 2006 as the most visited website in the United States. At its peak, News Corp purchased MySpace for $580 million. In 2007, MySpace was valued at $12 billion. By 2009, MySpace employed about 1,600 workers. And today, you can’t remember the last time you visited the site.
After the over half billion dollar purchase, MySpace’s new owners decided to focus on monetizing the service immediately. Under the guidance of a media empire that had little-to-no Internet company knowledge, MySpace began to flood their users with ads while doing very little to improve the user experience. Though Facebook was already on the rise, the site was targeted strictly at college students, minimally diminishing MySpace’s popularity at the time. Yet somehow, Facebook is probably on your other browser tab right now—with ads and all.
By 2008, Facebook overtook MySpace in Alexa rankings, as users discovered a better, cleaner and more user-friendly social networking website. MySpace popularity plummeted quicker than anyone had anticipated. By 2011, MySpace was sold for a mere $35 million, a fraction of what it was purchased for a few years earlier.
2014 is here. Where is MySpace now?
First off, it’s no longer called MySpace—it’s now Myspace (lowercase “s”). Down to about 200 employees, Myspace announced in November of 2013 that it would lay off 5% of its workforce. Under the ownership of Specific Media LLC and pop music singer and actor Justin Timberlake, the site has switched gears with a strong focus on music and other creative outlets. To put in better perspective, today’s Myspace is more of a Pandora Radio than a Facebook. The site has been completely redesigned with a modern feel and minimalistic accents that may or may not be carbon copies of other social media site elements.
What about my old Myspace page?
During beta testing for the new Myspace, a parallel sign-in option was provided to users so that they could click ‘classic MySpace’ if they so desired. That option is now gone. It was taken down without notice or warning and existing users nearly rioted about their deleted blog entries. Myspace claims to have not deleted the actual content but rather just cut off access to it. Users were not amused.
As of 2013, the new Myspace claims to have 50 million users, though it is uncertain how many of them are active.
Should I advertise on Myspace?
Myspace is set to rely on revenue from preroll video ads, branded content or native advertising. It’s important to recall that Myspace is now primarily a music recommendation site. If you were looking to place preroll ads in front of music videos, Myspace might be a cheaper alternative than YouTube. But before choosing to advertise on Myspace, do some research. Find out who’s actively using the site. Ultimately, will your ads reach their intended target.
Comeback stories are real. Whether Myspace can make one happen, only time will tell. For now we take a step back, learn from their mistakes and consider how to seize the opportunities still present before us.
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