It’s been above the fold of business blogs since the middle of June. Marketers are talking about it over the water cooler. Social media forums are exploding with user comments. In case you haven’t heard, Facebook has surpassed MySpace in number of unique visitors. Let’s take a deeper look and find out what all online businesses can learn from this power shift.
When MySpace originally launched, it was designed for young people and caught on with the music scene. Shockingly though, MySpace’s offerings have not changed much since, leaving it stuck with the stigma of being a place just for teens.
Additionally, MySpace’s early public scandals regarding its illegal use by sexual predators and lax control over raunchy online pictures and behavior have established it as more of an online night club than a legitimate social community.
With all of MySpace’s sparkly profile backgrounds and flashing text, the page load times were slow, causing current users frustration. With its confusing home page, potential new users tended to get discouraged and leave the site. After market and usability research, MySpace determined that these were barriers to proper use and in mid-June of this year, they gave their homepage a face lift and re-launched it (ignoring the load time gripes altogether.)
But it seems it was too late. Users had already begun jumping on the Facebook bandwagon and they still have not yet effectively re-branded it as a place for adults.
By contrast, Facebook has been innovating since the beginning. Their constant software updates and wide reaching applications have impressed and appealed to users of all ages.
As Facebook has gotten more popular, more users have contributed to the application pool. Feeding off of each other to help Facebook top MySpace, as more applications have been developed, more users have joined. The wide variety of applications now available has served to make each personalized account a microcosm of the internet.
Facebook also took steps, which MySpace skipped, in order to make it incredibly easy to find and add friends. Nearly everything in a Facebook account links to pages with others who share those same interests- helping a user find more users to add as a friend.
With an ever growing and diverse group of users across all stages of life, Facebook has become increasingly important with advertisers in all industries. This industry popularity has become a sort of self fulfilling prophesy. As more advertisers have pulled their advertising dollars from MySpace campaigns to gamble on Facebook it has begun to leave MySpace in the dust and propel Facebook further ahead.
From the plethora of groups and applications, to the number of engaging games, there is something for everyone on Facebook. Undoubtedly, that’s the reason for their emerging dominance in the online social media arena.
Business Lessons to Take Away
So what can business owners everywhere learn from this recent development?
- Failure to innovate will cost you customers
- Mismanaging bad press can poison your company’s reputation indefinitely
- Making it easy for customers to get what they want should be your company’s primary focus
- The more you can offer a customer to round out their experience with your company, the better
- User generated content is a great way to grow and stay current
Need help getting a Facebook Business Page? Here are step by step instructions!
-Kate Pierce eCommerce Specialist