For those observing the social media landscape in Japan it is very clear that Mixi is struggling to compete.It remains the final native social network in the Japanese market against the international giants Facebook and Twitter.

 

Once the largest and most popular Japanese social network, Mixi was founded in 2004, but contrasting with its previous success, the SNS looks to be destined for a similar fate as America’s MySpace.

 

One clear indicator of this is the keyword trends from past three years on the two major search engines Yahoo and Google Japan. Mixi was the third most popular search term on Google in 2011 before dropping to 6 in 2012, and 2013 saw the local SNS dropped completely from the top 10 list.

 

The case for Yahoo is almost exactly the same: From 2 in 2011, to 6 in 2012, and 16 in 2013.

 

As mentioned in our June news last year, Mixi was flexing many different methods to survive in the Japanese SNS market, such as exploring the smartphone app market.

 

In another attempt, it has been announced that Mixi will merge with istyle, the online marketing company behind the cosmetics website @cosme, on March 31, 2014.

 

It remains to be seen what this new alliance will bring forth and whether it can stop Mixi’s increasing downward spiral.

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