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‘TIS THE SEASON TO BE MOBILE
This Christmas retailers have embraced mobile as a device to help drive sales – with experts saying this festive season could be unlike any other, with record mobile e-commerce spending predicted. Much of the success has been attributed to more intuitive apps and barcode scanners.
In an interview with TechCrunch.com PayPal’s Senior Director for Mobile, Laura Chambers, said they’re preparing for the onslaught of traffic to their mobile sites. A number of big retailers, such as Armani Exchange, Guess and The Limited have recently put PayPal’s mobile express checkout as an option for payments on their mobile sites as a way to help the conversion process. “We are seeing strong investments by online retailers for mobile shopping this year,” she says.
Chambers says that last year, the peak for PayPal was December 12, with $4.7 million in mobile payments volume. Now PayPal is seeing $10 million in mobile payments per day, with the peak shopping season still a month away.
For retailers, this could indeed be the season to be jolly.

HOW MUCH IS BEING ‘LIKED’ REALLY WORTH?
Knowing someone likes you not only makes you feel warm and fuzzy, soon you will be able to put a dollar value on it.
Facebook has given their API to Adobe to measure what a ‘like’ is worth in their SocialAnalytics tool, in a bid to measure the monetary value of being popular on Facebook.
The two companies are using the tool, to measure against business metrics such as revenue and brand value.
In an interview with marketingweek.co.uk, Adobe said, “it’s the first tool that gives marketers a “causation” metric – rather than correlation – to assess the business value of social media campaigns. The tool also gives marketers access to data about the influence of other social media platforms such as Twitter and blogging site WordPress.
“At the moment lots of businesses use social dashboards, but they provide no insights, only trends – the business context is missing. We can tell you how social media gets consumers closer to making a purchase decision,” he adds.

MOBILE LINKING ONLINE AND IN-STORE SHOPPING
This year may really be the year of the mobile, with many apps promising to bridge the gap between online and in-store shopping.
The latest example is the Walmart shopping app that is being used to support their 140 million weekly customers and 3800 stores in the US, and some of the more interesting features include:
–       The use of Apple’s Siri voice command system to create shopping lists
–       A budgeting tool that allows you to keep a spend tally
–       Integration with coupon.com to receive discounts without the printing
–       See if an item is stocked in a particular store
–       Product information and reviews on items
Walmart is promising this is just the first of a series of mobile initiatives.

LEGALLY ADD MUSIC TO YOUR ONLINE VIDEO
Is using an illegally downloaded soundtrack from the net really worth a legal battle? Most people would answer no, but it doesn’t stop millions of people downloading music they haven’t purchased each year for amateur films and presentations.
With many social networks cracking down on the use of unauthorised soundtracks, it was the perfect time for the new partnership between Rumblefish and APM music to release their catalogue of licensed soundtracks for around $2 per track, allowing low-budget films to afford quality soundtracks.
Since launch, Rumblefish and APM music have sold more than 4.8 million soundtracks.

GOOD KARMA
It takes time and effort to help fundraise for charity, and if you prefer not to participate in fun-runs or book-reading marathons, there is an easier way to be a do-gooder and help raise much-needed funds for your favourite cause.
A new website karmagoat.com allows you to buy and sell your unwanted items just as you would on eBay or Craig’s List – with one difference, 85% of the proceeds go towards a charity of your choice (the other 15% go towards the sites admin fees).
There has never been a better time to de-clutter your home.

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