Social media is, by every definition, becoming a social marketplace. In fact, it’s already happening on an influencer level. Think of social media platforms as different malls, where sure, there are things to buy, plenty of shops, but really people are there to hang out and socialize (think high school). In the beginning, social platforms were wholly intended for communication. They were based around people–and not built like an eCommerce platform, for example.
But look at what has happened, and what is continuing to happen. People themselves have become brands; their own shops, if you will. Influencers command the attention within the marketplace (“Hey, look over here! This is where the cool stuff is!”). And the companies who know that this is where all the kids hang out are willing to shell out big bucks for exposure. Even the social platforms (the owners of the malls) themselves know their value–which is why only the early, early social platforms are free. If you want all your fans and followers to see your content on Facebook and Instagram, get ready to pay. And I promise you, this is only to get worse and worse, until it’s no longer social media. It’s simply a social marketplace.