Myspace. Now that might be a word you haven’t heard in awhile. And rightfully so, it was all but forgotten until last year when Justin Timberlake partnered with a firm called Specific Media and purchased the site for $35 million. Kind of hard to believe that just six years prior News Corp bought it for $580 million, right?

Well from what I can tell, big changes are afoot at Myspace. They’re making great efforts to distance themselves from the format of other popular social media channels like Facebook and Twitter. In the process, they’re positioning themselves as their own unique brand of social media. One totally invested in music.

Early Advertising / Marketing
It’s important to note that the site isn’t open to marketers and advertisers just yet. The new Myspace is in its infancy but there’s a wealth of potential for musicians, professionals and brands to promote their brand, products or artists.

Get Your Invitation
If you want to scope out the new Myspace don’t hesitate to get in touch with the Sparkle team for your invite to the social network. You can find our contact information at the end of this post.

A First Look
Let’s dive into the changes and see why Myspace is worth giving a second chance (or first, if you weren’t on it before). In the past few months we’ve seen the birth of a whole new Myspace. The community is still pretty exclusive as you require a invite from a current member to even make a profile on their new website. The first thing that I noticed about the new Myspace is that there is a great deal of emphasis on visuals.

There are definitely some comparisons to be drawn between Myspace’s new format and Pinterest. Much of the communication on the website is facilitated through images. And you’re easily capable of linking them to your profile and sharing them with your connections.

Plus instead of the regular old vertical scroll on most web pages, Myspace features a unique side scroll for browsing your stream. Many articles out there have taken notice of that fact. Read more about them here:

– Mashable: The New Myspace: Music Meets Social, Done Right
– The Age: Music meets social at the new Myspace
– Social Media Examiner: Getting Started With the New Mypsace: What Businesses Need to Know

Profiles take on a very different look and feel. Rather than the “smaller” Cover Photos on Facebook, the entire background of your profile serves as a Cover Photo. It’s really easy on the eyes. For more tips on optimizing your social media with images, check this out!

Ultimately, It’s MySpace to Connect me With the Music (& the Musicians) I Love
Myspace is staying true to its roots though. It remains an amazing place for musicians, bands, and producers alike to market themselves, share their music through Myspace’s advanced sharing tools and ultimately, connect fans with their favourite artists.

They still boast the largest online music library with more than 50 million songs. As an up and coming artist there’s no question as to whether or not you need to be on Myspace. Check out this Tweet from Myspace promoting an artist’s page and music.

There are a lot of artists worth discovering on #NewMyspace…like @1midian for instance:……

— Myspace (@Myspace) January 18, 2013

Artists like Soulja Boy, Sean Kingston, Tila Tequila, My Chemical Romance and Asher Roth found their start on Myspace. When it comes to being noticed, the musicians on the social network have a competitive advantage over other artists trying to break out into the mainstream music scene. They’re more likely to be noticed and are introducing themselves to a whole new market that is actively seeking out new and innovative music.

Once I reached the top ten, my plays started to increase after every week. After I found MySpace, I linked my MySpace page directly to my SoundClick account. After I did my first million, my music was in the streets, and I just started doing shows from there. – Soulja Boy

Read more about his rise to the top here.

Trouble For Timberlake
Unfortunately, it’s not all good and well on the Myspace frontier when it comes to the copyright and IP just yet.

Myspace has done a great job integrating free music with a social platform. But is that music really free? I mean, it belongs to someone, right? Well this issues has been raised to the folks at Myspace and they’re currently under pressure by an agency managing the music distribution of several different independent music labels. Myspace’s rights to some artists’ songs had expired back in 2011 – yet they’re still being shared for free via Myspace. While it’s all good and well for Timberlake who has been using myspace as a platform to promote his new single “Suit & Tie,” his fellow artists aren’t sharing in the same spoils. Since then, Myspace has worked alongside the agency and made efforts to amend their contracts and ensure that only music they have the rights to remain available through their platform. Read more about the copyright controversy here.

But It’s All Good
Few big name brands are on the new my space but as a marketer it is definitely a social media channel to watch. This is partially due to Myspace still being in its beta period. But one this is for sure, they’ve stepped up their game and this time they mean business. There’s so much potential in the new Myspace and it’s not an opportunity you’re going to want to miss!

If you’re looking for a more detailed tour of Myspace’s new website be sure to check out this article on Mashable. I found their slideshow to be EXTREMELY helpful in navigating Myspace my first time around.

P.S. If you want an invite, I’m only a Tweet away! Also, don’t be afraid to holler at the rest of the Sparkle team – @Debbie_h2o and @patrycjawygnal

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