Companies like Facebook don’t make any goods. They offer a service, by letting members create content, which they can then share with their social circles. It is a social content-creation service.
That’s the equivalent of a newspaper company allowing its readers to amble into its printing presses, any time of the day, and create newspapers for their friends, hyper custom-made publications that cater to very, very narrow slivers of readers.
Facebook offers this gratis. Yet, it makes pots of gold. How? To continue the newspaper analogy, it’s on the walls of the printing facility where the money is.
As hordes of people rush in and out of a busy printing house, with copies of their little newspapers clutched under their arms, they’re exposed to scores of advertisements plastered on the walls. Facebook charges its advertisers, who’re the makers and sellers of goods, to post advertisements in places that are hard to miss—the walls.