Back before the turn-of-the-century, during the mid-90s web emergence, I used to proselytize about the coming shift of power from mainstream media organizations to Internet users. I summed it up with my quippy YOU ARE THE MEDIA.
Every man and woman is a star.— Aleister Crowley
Now, I'm not so sure. The whole rise of the Web 2.0 social networking applications marketing model seems to be suggesting something more intimate and powerful. The new value isn't in something you're presenting as media but that you're presenting it. Usually your hotsuff on myspace.com.
Now, I believe, it's turning into YOU ARE THE BRAND.
Myspace's out-of-control growth has left many "traditional" web application companies scracthing their heads. Is myspace's popularity due to a sleek user interface? Obviously not, just look at it. Is it due to a great business model? Not at all, just look at it. Go ahead. Just ask a myspace representative what their site does. They don't really know since they built it so fast and organically. They'll talk about social networking and Web 2.0 but it explains nothing as to what they provide as a service.
Myspace serves about 2 billion ads a day. That's what they do. That's their business plan. And it's not a bad business plan. But what are they providing that no one else does? Social interaction? Not really, myspace's interaction features are woefully immature and underdeveloped. The ubiquitous Tom, the most famous person in the world now who is added to every myspacer's "Friends List," offers nothing of substance to help people intearact with each other.
What myspace seems to do best is provide a single-source for branding yourself. Bands, companies and individuals make their profile, post a few pics, blog occassionally, but in general, nothing happens.
75 million users (76 million a day or so from this posting) have adopted it as their single location to be found on the web. How did myspace create this? Did they have some ingenius plan to garner such stats? Nope. Remember, they're not quite sure what all they've built since they built it so fast. Total luck... again for a net company. Thank god they got bought by Murdoch when they had around 25 million users just a few months ago. Murdoch, now there's someone with a plan. I bet he makes more money from it eventually than his traditional media companies.
Myspace, by luck of the fickly Internet, has become your Internet calling-card. Look at me, I have a myspace page seems to be the main message. Now, if you have a gazillion myspace friends (well, obviously you posted your image as a big-breasted blonde-gal), this has commodity.
You are not the media. The media is old and losing users at an alarming rate.
Now, the model seems to be, YOU ARE THE BRAND! People want to be your myspace friend. Why? No one knows. What can you do with that?
Enjoy it while it lasts...
|Delivered unto you by Grouchogandhi precisely at 6:12:00 AM|