Marketing Lessons Learned From the Genius of….. Myspace?

With all the flack Google+ has been taking in the social platform arena lately, most of us have forgotten about it’s predecessor in the “also ran” category of social networks: Myspace.

It seems Myspace has been taking advantage of it’s time out of the spotlight. Late last month co-owner Justin Timberlake tweeted a link to a video showcasing the newly redesigned myspace. Despite having tried, and failed, to previously redesign their image, the new video garnered mostly positive feedback from the tech community. Not bad for a social platform whose user base is dwarfed almost sevenfold by Google+.

Myspace, now styled with a lowercase “s”, may be on to a bold new direction for their company. But how did they get to this point, positioned on the edge of a potential resurgence? Let’s take a look at the basic marketing strategies driving the company’s new direction.

Focus on Your Purpose

One of the things that led Myspace, and many other companies, astray in the past was trying to be just like their competitors. By veering further and further from their core competencies, Myspace quickly put itself in a dangerous position. By the time Myspace started to really lag behind competitors like Facebook and Google+, the platform was in desperate need of much more than a redesign. Tim Vanderhook, Myspace CEO, told FastCompany “You really had to build everything from scratch, you had to rethink what the brand was actually going to stand for, and then you had to give people a totally different experience.”

Myspace appears to have done just that, with a renewed focus on the music community. Music has always been a distinguishing factor for Myspace, and Facebook’s integration with services like Spotify leaves much to be desired of the social music experience. With music as the core offering driving the platform, Myspace was reimagined with the entire information structure designed to support and enhance the music experience. With dynamic artist pages and a slick drag-and-drop playlist tool, their designers have hit the bullseye.

Give the Data to the People!

Myspace also showed off well styled in-page analytics tools unlike any offered by competitors. Maps of followers, sharing data, and fan behavior are all highlighted in attractive infographics throughout the page. Analytics are designed to be easily understood at a glance and positioned where they are most needed.

Where many platforms are more eager to employ user data internally, owner Chris Vanderhook explained “We’re really trying to take all that data we’ve collected and put it in the hands of our community.” In addition to the attractive in-page analytics, the new Myspace is rumored to have advanced targeting options for posts and special offers.

Design Matters

As the business world continues to evolve, we are seeing good design making a real impact on the bottom line of companies big and small. Slick user interfaces and well-crafted web experiences are no longer an afterthought, but a major requirement for products and services.

The new Myspace delivers best in class web design in spades. With a new horizontal timeline layout, a modern profile design reminiscent of pinterest, and a gorgeous posting interface, Myspace may be the new standard for social platform design. Even if it doesn’t draw users by the millions, the new design sets the platform apart from the competition and is focused on the sites purpose: music.

What do you think of the new redesign? Will you give Myspace another spin? Let us know what you think!