As an example of a compelling MS page, my collegue introduced Vaeda. They're a top unsigned band with over 250,000 listens. Their page pretty much sums up what a band can do to create a great fan-centric online experience.
What's so special?
1. The overall look is clean and legible.
Yep. Someone in this band or their crew has a sense of design. Key points when designing a page if you're all thumbs or have no skills is keeping it simple. Don’t go font crazy. Make sure that you can read the thing. This is made way easier if you use one of the Myspace editing programs. Colorblind or colorstupid? Check this nifty web color picker.
2. The information is updated regularly.
These guys keep their tour dates current and seem to update their blog on a regular basis.
3. Offer some really cool add-on interactive and viral tools.
- MP3’s and ringtones for sale
- radio request link tool
- pre-made style sheets with ready-to-paste HTML
- banners with ready-to-paste HTML
- “fan of the week” spotlight
- incentive for referrals of friends
- use of YouTube video to supply show footage
- “exclusive” myspace only content
By no means is Myspace the final means to an end at this stage of the game. Monetizing 499,000 profile views requires an investment and business experience. These are fundamental blocks to keep perpetuating content, distribution of CDs (for as long as that stays around), the band on the road, and manage other publicity. All MySpace can really do is help an artist reach the most advanced "demo" stage it can be.
But that will be the topic of a future entry...
If any reader has additions to the above, please post in comments.