Social Networks: MySpace vs. Facebook
In regards to marketing, this seems to be a common question: Who does a better job at reaching out to my target community and why? I tend to lean towards spelling out their differences by looking at two key areas. First we identify how far do they want the message to reach beyond their immediate sphere or existing client databases. I then try to profile my marketing the client’s internal staff’s strengths/weaknesses before suggesting either of these two contenders. Staff profiling is a very important part of the decision because we all know that the social media marketing is a living and breathing thing. It needs to be fed for it to offer any return. Having the right kind of content writer and contributors is a critical component. Once we’ve identified these two areas my client can make an informed decision about how aggressively he/she would like to use either of these two social sites. Sample evaluations on each:
Facebook.com tends to very much cater to a 1st generation level of contacts in my opinion. That means that the jump between you and the person you’re trying to connect with is generally only once. Granted, one can always go in and request friends of friends etc. But the search is narrow and the permissions are pretty limited. The way I ‘d advise a client in this arena is: If you have a strong database of 1st gen contacts, let’s load them up and see how many you can invite into your network. Growing a sphere by reaching a 2nd generation or 3rd generation level of people will be more time consuming and customizable things such as logos, branding, etc. is also very limited. I tend to look at Facebook as more of a tool to connect with one’s immediate sphere. I also tend to recommend Facebook if my client’s staff is limited or not strong content developers. Much of the activity in Facebook is short and to the point, so not a whole lot of depth unless they post videos and notes.
MySpace.com This is a social media site that I tend to recommend when a client is looking to market to specific segments of the demographic that he/she may not know. The search for people is much more diverse. MySpace offers much more flexibility in the areas of customizing one’s page, has much more to offer in the form of blogging as well. In my opinion, this social media site is much more of a place where clients can express themselves to their immediate sphere, while building a network of like minded contacts that may be 2nd, 3rd, etc. generation contacts. I also tend to lean towards MySpace if my client’s support staff is savvy when it comes to posting press releases via the blogs, knowing how to manage bulletin board postings, and various media files, etc.