1 Social Media Post. 1 Teaser Video. 1 Countdown Clock. Apparently that's all it takes to start a firestorm of conversation online. Of course, it doesn't hurt when that tweet, video and countdown are in reference to Justin Timberlake's return to music. In a brilliant, and unbelievably simple, marketing campaign, JT sent the below, slightly cryptic message to his 15 million+ Twitter followers, 17+ million Facebook likers and his growing (he hopes) MySpace friends on Thursday afternoon: The link sends fans to http://countdown.justintimberlake.com/ which launches a 60 second teaser video entitled "I'm Ready." The video follows Timberlake as he walks through a building into a recording studio. The accompanying first-person voice over features Timberlake talking about how serious he takes his craft, and why he's been so inconsistent in producing music over the past few years. At the close of the video, the screen changes to a mexican pharmacy online ticking countdown. The wait ends on Sunday 1/13, but the buzz is just beginning. Well done, JT.
I'm excited about Myspace. Yes, you read that correctly. I'll be the first to acknowledge that I never expected to start a blog post with those four words, but after watching the preview video (embedded below), I have to admit that I'm disappointed I deleted my account back in 2009. JT has successfully checked "bringing sexy back" off of his lifetime to-do list. Can he do the same for MySpace? He's definitely not alone in the venture. The redesign is being led by the team at Specific Media and agency partner JosephMark. Via the new.myspace.com site, "We're hard at work building the new Myspace, entirely from scratch. But we're staying true to our roots in one important way'empowering people to express themselves however they want. So whether you're a musician, photographer, filmmaker, designer or just a dedicated fan, we'd love for you to be a part of our brand new community." The teaser video begins with a simple "this is Myspace" introduction, and the video is wonderfully scored with the JJAMZ song "Heartbeat" which begins with the self-deprecating line "Who am I to say I want you back?" Based on functionality shown in the video, the team at Myspace is clearly trying to compliment existing social networking behemoths Facebook and Twitter rather than replace them. This is illustrated by the ability for users to sign in via their existing profiles on either network. And the one area where Myspace had been able to stay relevant - music - still appears to be core to the experience. With a dedicated main navigation tab for "Mixes" and the ability to play/discover music via streaming videos and radio, Myspace will likely remain a place where musicians can connect directly with fans. An interesting build to that relationship appears to be an artist's ability to identify and connect with their top fans based on their influence in sharing content. Which could be a big motivator for fans to join the network and follow their favorite artists. One personal highlight - it appears the "top 8" functionality will still exist allowing us all to once again publicly identify our best BFFs. Overall, the design aesthetic is beautiful. The designers have applied a Pinterest-like treatment to photos and have seemingly designed with content exploration/discovery at the forefront of the UX. I've requested an invite and am excited to explore. Are you excited for the new Myspace? Share your thoughts in the comments below. http://vimeo.com/50071857