Monday, April 27, 2009

The Long Tail - Stretching to make Free Profitable

One of the economic concepts explored previously by this website is that of the Long Tail. It is one of a number of concepts being studied in an attempt to understand how sustainable development and businesses might function. If businesses do not maximize profits by selling with exclusivity to their richest clients or mass marketing to the fairly affluent middle and lower classes, how to they keep in business? Is there a "market" to be found at the bottom billion or does that require a non-ending program of government handouts whether at the local or global level? Bottom-line question can a business model be created out of giving things away for free?

CHRIS ANDERSON, the editor in chief of Wired magazine, and the author of "The Long Tail" and "Free," which will be published in July, explores the concept of The Economics of Giving It Away in this article.
In a battered economy, free goods and services online are more attractive than ever. So how can the suppliers make a business model out of nothing?

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