Justin Timberlake’s “Bringing Sexy Back” to MySpace

What do you get when you combine a dying social media platform and a perpetually popular pop star? Hopefully a new, hip and relevant platform if you’re Specific Media, the group that just bought MySpace for $35 million. The former “Mickey Mouse Club” star, NSYNC front man and Britney Spears’ ex-boyfriend is putting on a new suit: Justin Timberlake the MySpace stakeholder.

In the last two years, traffic to MySpace has taken an almost literal nosedive. Once a pioneer in the world of social media, MySpace is now more like a post-millennial time capsule where people created accounts only to leave them untouched for years.

There has, however, been one avenue in which MySpace has been surprisingly popular: the music scene. New and established bands are still using the site to stream songs to fans for free. You might not be seeing the teens and tweens flock to MySpace like they were just 5 years ago, but music junkies? Yep, they’re still there.

When you view MySpace in that light, the addition of Justin Timberlake suddenly looks like the most genius move ever. If your site is largely failing at its original purpose, why not just rebrand it, get your business a new “face” (in this case Justin Timberlake) and capitalize on what’s really working for you?

Social media is still “new” in the big picture of the world. The social media platforms that came before the ones we now know by name – Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn, YouTube – all went out with an inaudible fizzle. MySpace, however, is showing that they won’t go gently into that good night. Can a dying social media platform give itself a new image and a new purpose to redefine the capabilities of social media? Can one man and a ton of money create relevancy? We’re not sure just yet, but it will be a fun ride to watch.