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1) Myspace launches advertising based on user data
2) It’s the social network data that matters, stupid.
3) OpenSocial will be big for marketers who want to connect to social network users
4) Google Trends: searches for Facebook nearly equal to searches for Myspace in the US

myspacelogo1105.pngMyspace to launch advertising based on user data — Myspace plans to launch a self-service advertising system that includes new targeting technology for placing ads with users that are relevant to their profiles and interests.News Corp.-owned Myspace’s new ad system, called “SelfServe by Myspace.” It will let anyone create ads that target users through information on their profiles, such as location, age, and other list information and will be available by 2008.

The system that SelServe uses is called “HyperTargeting by Myspace” and is already running ads for major brands.

These Myspace ads are entirely separate from the social network’s advertising deal with Google, where Google runs it own ads on Myspace and keeps a share of the revenue for itself. In that sense, Myspace is competing against Google, hoping to reduce Google’s revenue share by showing users more of their own ads, and keeping the money earned when users click through to an advertiser.

At the same time, Google, Myspace and competing social networks like Bebo and Friendster, have joined together in the OpenSocial project, which is designed to give application developers a standard way to access user data across social networks. We’ve written about Google’s nascent efforts to advertise within applications on Facebook — Google may be tailoring its own advertising technology to serve highly-targeted ads within applications that run in OpenSocial sites.

It’s the data, stupid! — Facebook may have such a head start in accumulating data about its users, it could use its data to help other services become more valuable Mark Cuban argues.

Facebook’s first version of its platform, released over a year ago, lets developers build free-standing web sites that can access Facebook user data — the catch is outside site needs to be connected to Facebook’s servers at all times.

If Facebook freely publishes this data so that it can be used outside, rather than hosting it and merely giving outsiders access, Tim O’Reilly thinks the company could make itself the center of a social directory. He calls the current OpenSocial an Ajax widget “halfway house” that restricts developers to building applications like those already on Facebook, adding:

We all want what Mark [Cuban] describes: a definitive place under our own control where we can describe who we are and what we care about so that applications can use that data to provide us with smarter services. We don’t really care whether that repository is at Facebook or Google or any other site, or perhaps even if it’s an aggregation of data from many places, but we do want it to become more useful to us. Not just more useful to the holder of our profile, but to every site we touch on the internet. Whichever company gets there first, to a truly open, user-empowering, internet-turbocharging social network platform, is going to be the net’s next big winner.

OpenSocial will be big for marketers who want to connect to social network users — Figuring out how to reach the large demographic of teens and 20-somethings on social networks has been a challenge. The age group ignores traditional banner ads. Advertisers have already been experimenting with their own Facebook applications. Here, Jeremiah Owyang has a step-by-step guide for how companies should think about pushing their brands and products OpenSocial.

Google Trends: searches for Facebook nearly equal to searches for Myspace, worldwide — The red line is Myspace, the blue link is Facebook, below. Source here.

facebookmyspacegoogle-1.png

Doug Sherrets contributed to this article.

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