Is Myspace Dead?

According to the technorati,  Myspace is a sitting duck.  And people in the digital industry are waiting for the day when it will be blown out of the water and go the way of other popular websites like drKoop.com.  So is Myspace, which boosts more than 125 million users, 71 million unique visits per month, and 38 billion page views a day (Comsore, April 2009) really a waste of a writer’s time and marketing efforts? 

 

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 Despite its increased popularity in Latin/South America, Myspace is no longer the no.1 social networking site in the United States having just lost their place at the top of the rankings in the past ten months to Facebook. Their market share has shrunk so dramatically they even laid off 30% of its workforce in June. 

So should you create your own space on Myspace? 

Myspace is great for certain niche markets such as the entertainment industry.  That’s why their login page always features celebrities, burgeoning rock bands, comedians and upcoming movie releases. It’s also a cheap alternative for unpublished writers to create a buzz/name for themselves before they sell their first book without shelling out any money for a full blown website. 

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(a hunky comment from author Paige Tyler) 

I had  a Myspace profile for 2 years now despite my love/hate relationship with social networking and the site’s weakening visitor numbers.  My reason for my Myspace loyalty?  Well, it’s easier to add or find friends on Myspace compared to Facebook because Facebookers are much more selective when it comes to accepting a friendship connection or joining a fan page.  

Hmm…I wonder if its because people don’t want to junk up their pristine profile page with something or someone they personally don’t know or don’t really like? Or maybe it’s because they don’t want to expend the energy trying to keep up with people they don’t talk to on a regular basis.   I will admit the latter is one of the main reasons I only have 27 friends on my personal FB page.  And all of them are either family or really, really close friends who I speak to on a daily basis.  None of them are former high school or college classmates or people from my job or within the writing industry.

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(a little Valentine’s Day humor from author Lila Dipasqua)

Sorry, I went window shopping. 

Despite Myspace’s tanking numbers, I don’t have any plans to abandon my  Myspace profile.  I’ve found Myspace is another great way to promote who I am and hopefully sell books because according to my free Myspace tracker MixxMap, my profile outpaces my website in not only page views, but monthly unique visitors by a whopping 125%. 

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(a nice pick me up from a myspace friend)

I also don’t want to give up my homepage because of the amount of people, almost 2,800, I’ve befriended and the relationships I’ve developed with many of them.  I also like to use my profile to re-engage readers by inviting them to off site chats or special events on the Scribes Unleashed Yahoo Group, promote my back list and current releases, increase my visibility on the search engines, simply receive a morality boost from readers who’ve enjoyed my books. And the hot hunk comments aren’t bad either;p

  

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(a sweet birthday wish from a reader)

Which brings me to the crux of social networking.  Like any other profile/website, if you aren’t actively using it, it’s nothing but a static web page.  And everyone hates going onto a person’s profile they haven’t logged into since 2005.  In a nutshell, the more you use Myspace the more SEO value you’ll receive from it. So how can you use your Mspace page to promote myself as an author or promote my books? 

Here’s a few tips:

*Seek out groups and communities that are interesting in reading or books and join them.

*Post your book trailer in the Myspace Video section which will further your reach

*Friend people who share an interest in your product or service.  Just don’t go out willy nilly and just add anyone.  Add people who are readers and not just someone who wants to become “Myspace popular”

*Post, post, post.  Keep your profile page current with news about upcoming releases, special promotions with your publishers,

*Direct people to your other networking sites, publishers, and official website. 

*Use your blog to give potential readers a taste of your writing. 

*Read other people’s Myspace blog’s and leave a comment.  You never know who’ll come and visit and be curious enough to visit your profile

*Post comments on other’s Myspace profiles.  I can’t tell you how many people have requested my friendship after doing this. 

Okay, now that you know a few Myspace SEO basics, I have to warn you that Myspace can also be a time drain.  Trust me, I found this out the hard way! So, to save you time and heartache, I would sign up on ping.fm so all of your status updates and blog posts can be sent out all at once with one easy click.  I have about 30 social networking/bookmarking sites signed up currently for my 9-5 job. 

If you need help gathering friends, you can use a paid application like Open Adder  or Friend Blaster Pro or a any number of free ones out there.  These applications are great for finding people who match your ideal reader.  Remember its quality not quantity.  An added bonus of these applications is their ability to distribute comments and messages to all of your friends without you having to post the same message hundreds of times.  Unfortunately, they can’t invite people to special events you’ve planned.

So, whether you decide to use Myspace or abandon it, just remember like any social networking site, you have to use it or you’ll lose it:) Which reminds me, I need to roll up my sleeves and do something with my new Facebook author profile:(

Who are Myspacers?

  • 51% are male
  • 64% don’t have a college degree
  • 58% are 18-34
  • 61% are Caucasian and 24% are African American
  • 44% Have incomes of 30K-60K

statistics provided by Quancast

 Stay tuned for “How to Squeeze More Out of YouTube!”

4 Responses

  1. admin says:

    Thanks for stopping by Carly! Yes, social networking can be a time drain. Make sure you look into ping.fm or hootsuite. Those two progams can help you send out one status message to multiple accounts all at once. Thus saving you time to write:)

  2. Carly Carson says:

    Thanks for the tips, Koko. I must admit I'm terrible about promotion and keep telling myself to do more. It is such a time suck and I feel like I have enough friends in my real life, lol. And there are so many different avenues to use. Sigh. But I should do more and blogs like this are a good reminder.

    Unlike you, I LOVE hearing from people in my past on Facebook. But that's a personal account and I don't try to keep up with everything on it.

  3. admin says:

    Thanks for stopping by George!

    You're definitely ahead of game. I didn't set up anything until I sold my first book. Sad I know. Social networking is all about personal preference. And each site attracts different audiences.

    I will probably ignore Twitter as an author. I have one for my 9-5 and its just really impersonal to me. I feel like I'm shouting at people or throwing up billboard signs. And at times its hard to follow people. We follow the local newspaper and Parks and Recr. Those two just spam the entire page, I can't keep up at times. So, I just leave or tweet from my Blackberry. LOL. And I'm going to take a look at Hootsuite to help generate Tweets in advance for all our local events and such.

    Don't feel pressured to sign up for Myspace, I didn't sign up for Facebook for my author page until two weeks ago and I haven't written or updated anything over there other than uploading my book covers and a few photos. I think its because I already maintain 2 profiles and 2 fan/group pages and I just don't want to have to maintain anything else.

    That's great you signed up for Ping. I LOVE IT! That little profile saves me a ton of time and energy duplicating the same message over and over again.

  4. George Allwynn says:

    Hi Koko

    Again, thank you for devoting your time and energy – and promotional space of your blog – to helping poor, computer nimrods like me! I find your approach user friendly and have benefited from your tutoring lessons.

    Being an aspiring writer, I have slowly started setting up different accounts that I will be able to activate when I get closer to my goal.

    I am getting my name out with Twitter (touching base with other established authors, readers of M/M and certain editors of the publishing houses I am looking at).

    I have started establishing myself on YouTube and RadioTalk Blog (just in the beginning stages)

    I have bought my domain name and my e-mail name and am in the process of setting up a website on GoDaddy.

    I have set up a Live Journal account but it confuses the hell out of me, so I use it basically to keep track of authors who blog on there.

    I have completed a social network on Ping and a yahoo group – but haven't launched them yet (again, just putting my ducks in a row – I need something to do that is geared toward my writing when I am taking a breather away from writing words).

    Three days ago, I signed into Face Book, but haven't done anything yet. The same day, I signed up for Ping fm (haven't done anything there yet.)

    I haven't set up a MySpace account yet (was planning to). BUT now I am wondering…

    QUESTION:

    If I don't already have something on MySpace – and it's seems like this site is on a downward spiral, do you think I should invest my time in creating something there?

    I see the feasibility of a continued update if you are already established. However, with me starting out, I believe I could use my time more efficiently and effectively by not joining MySpace at this time.

    Am I thinking along the right tracks? Or am I totally off base?

    I am also gonna post this on the yahoo group – but I'm extremely interested in your opinion.

    Thanking you in advance.

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