myspace_logoApple’s introduction yesterday of the Ping social networking site for music has been widely proclaimed as a harbinger to the death of MySpace.

A number of articles have already speculated that the once-upon-a-time-most-popular social networking site is on its death bed, but the case study of MySpace’s ultimate failure provides some real food for thought.

MySpace is a classic example of misaligned strategy directly leading to improper execution. There’s no reason MySpace couldn’t have, shouldn’t have been the preeminent social networking Web app—they were first to market, had a sizable user base (estimates range from anywhere from 100-160 million total accounts), a premium advertising deal with Google (reported at $900 million over 3 years) . . . . yet less than five years from its peak in 2006, the company is on its way to irrelevance . . . .

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