I ran across this great post a few days ago that I found to be very relevant as my band evaluates where devote on-line energy. This brings up the elephant in the room that all bands need to discuss sooner or later.
>> 5 Reasons for Bands & Musicians to Quit MySpace
It’s no secret that MySpace is on it’s way out. The prominent rise of Facebook, coupled with our pain threshold for spam, flashing graphics and blaring noise has worn out MySpace’s welcome. Long ago have I abandoned any meaningful time spent at the spent for my personal profile. For my band’s profile, I still log into MySpace a few times per week, but the ROI has continued to decrease for our band and MySpace.
The biggest thing you can take away from the article is Reason #3:
Other bands are not your primary source of attendance
According to the statistics I’ve heard, there are roughly 8 million bands on MySpace, and you have 15,000 of them as friends! Unfortunately, those people are probably not buying your albums or attending your shows. While they may be good to do a show swap with, or bro down with for a tour some day-they’re not helping you pay the bills and put butts in your seats.
The 10% of users that are real people more than likely COMPLETELY ignore the “bulletins” that you can blast out to everyone. When was the last time you went to a show based on a bulletin you saw on MySpace? [Assault Blog]
I can’t tell you the last time I’ve interacted with an actual fan on MySpace. Almost every interaction I have is with other bands, and the ones that aren’t bands are booking agents/venues – which is really only the valid communication that goes on for us on MySpace. The collaboration is on MySpace is also a downside, because typically when these venues list you on their promotion, they link our MySpace, which isn’t our best web presence out there.
The article lists some great resources & alternatives to using MySpace. We use some of them including Twitter and Last.Fm. There was one omission which I think is starting to become unavoidable: Facebook. While I agree that it’s always best to own your own content and presentation, along with the concession that Facebook is a little harder for brand outreach – but you need to be where people are at – which right now is Facebook.
Until then, I think we’re going to start to wean ourselves off of MySpace. I don’t think we’ll ever stop posting music, pictures and show schedules there, but only because it doesn’t hurt to keep things updated for booking agents. However, I think it’s time for bands to focus their energies elsewhere.