MySpace, owned by Rupert Murdoch, seems to be a very popular place for bands and musicians to set up shop. One wonders why. I have a suspicion it’s because Murdoch owns so much media, he was able to publicize it. A lot of big bands trying to get onto the Internet/Web 2.0 bandwagon set up MySpace pages, which created more publicity, and the hoards of up and coming acts, wannabes, amateurs , professionals and semi-professionals all suddenly got to thinking that they needed a MySpace page too. They could collect friends (fans), post news, video and photos and even a few tunes. But did it really work? Did it benefit MySpace more than the artists?
MySpace is not exactly the most flexible, user-friendly and full-featured content management system. It’s pretty clunky, really – and without a lot of time spent tweaking it, MySpace pages tend to look pretty bad. Half the page is also filled with advertising of stuff you have no control over.
The good thing is that you can follow links and discover people and other music acts, but does it really help your career? Surely it is more vanity publishing than career marketing. If you are already a big international hit you could amass a huge friend list, pay someone to maintain the page and make you look good, but if you are just starting out or looking at building your career, there are much better tools and much better ways to go about it. Surely as an artist you want full creative freedom and control of your Internet presence. MySpace could be a secondary location but surely not your main home page. If it is a second home, then chances are you won’t be able to afford the time and/or resources to maintain it in a way that is going to help you advance your career. You have to work hard at it – adding friends, commenting on other people’s pages, engaging your ‘fans’. No doubt there are some artists and musicians who have ‘made it’ through MySpace, but I would say they are few and far between – and most of them would be young, female and hot. If you want to be known for your music, try something else. Get a real Website. Post videos on YouTube and embed them into your site. Get a site that has content management facilities so that you can keep it up to date. Use social networking sites, but don’t make them your first home. A real Website, with your own domain name is going to be a far better option. It will give you freedom and flexibility and full control. Handing your digital life over to Rupert Murdoch so that he can sell advertising on your page is a good career move – for him – but not so much for you.
In fact, you should probably sign up with a whole bunch of sites: FaceBook, Flickr, YouTube, etc… so that your footprint is increased – but use your own Website on your own domain as the central hub for all your activities.
A musician Website can have audio, video, gig guide, bookings, CD sales, t-shirts, hats, etc., fan club discussion board, galleries, biography, press kit, news and announcements, blog, gig diary and a design that perfectly matches your style.
Try www.cyrius.com.au to see what can be done. This recording studio in Sydney is part of Cyrius Media Group – why not have the whole package taken care of under one roof?
Music Musicians and MySpace