MySpace eyes broader audience with redesign

LOS ANGELES: MySpace launched a redesign to help the social network appeal to new markets and shake off its image as an adolescent-only zone in response to client feedback.

LOS ANGELES: MySpace launched a redesign to help the social network appeal to new markets and shake off its image as an adolescent-only zone in response to client feedback.

Launched June 18, the redesigned site is intended to make the social network "more intuitive and approachable," said a source at MySpace. The redesign initiatives were developed from consumer comments from usability studies, online surveys, impromptu testing, focus groups, online feedback studies, blog comments, and other user feedback.

"The goal is to widen the demographic of MySpace's global community, to deepen the engagement of current users, as well as to attract new ones," the source added. "By the fall, we expect to reveal an entirely new and remixed MySpace."

A two-pronged outreach effort to promote the redesign targets consumers and advertisers. Media targets for the advertising outreach include industry marketing trades, mainstream outlets such as USA Today, and blogs.

The primary message for advertisers is that the site's overhaul will allow more immersive advertising opportunities. For consumers, the message will tout the site's new features and user-friendly interface, the source noted.

"I think there is a source of public perception that MySpace is for younger people, but we don't want people to think [it] isn't for them because they are 30, 40, or even 50," the source explained. "With this redesign, we want to service some people who were put off by the lack of design [on the site previously], and some of those people were older."

Messaging will note the site's broad user demographics, highlighting a user base with more adults than teens, said the source. The company, which has 117 million-plus accounts, says it has more users over 35 than any other social networking site.

Both MySpace and main rival Facebook have more users over 35 than any other demographic, according to recent comScore reports. The LA Times reported that MySpace is expected to miss its revenue target of $1 billion for this year.

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