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Facebook launches user-powered ad network

Mark Zuckerberg yesterday announced Facebook ads, a new ad system which will allow advertisers to take advantage of recommendations from Facebook users.

Under the new system, advertisers can create profile pages on the social network with applications and content related to the company's product or service, while users can add these brands as 'fans'.

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Majority of online shoppers experience transaction problems

Almost nine out of ten British web shoppers experience difficulties when purchasing online, while etailers compound these problems with poor customer service, according to a new survey.

The survey of 2,118 UK adults, conducted by Harris Interactive for Tealeaf, found that many (37%) customers were likely to abandon transactions if they experienced problems.

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Social Media: simple advice and future-gazing

Right, time to challenge my attention span, concentrate and share some thoughts about our Harnessing the Power of Social Media event last week.

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Webloyalty reward scheme draws flak from consumers

Rewards scheme operator Webloyalty is on the sharp end of some ferocious comments from consumers who feel they have been misled.

The company operates an online rewards scheme through companies such as Interflora, to offer new customers the chance to save money on future purchases at participating retailers. When customers opt to take part in the rewards scheme (by entering and confirming an email address) Webloyalty signs them up to its programme.

What many customers don't seem to realise, based on various forum threads, is that it will cost them £8 per month (after a one-month trial period), and that Webloyalty gets their credit card details from the retailer.

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Q&A: Bruce Tognazzini on human-computer interaction

Bruce Tognazzini was Apple's 66th employee, developing the company's first usability guidelines and founding its Human Interface team.

Almost thirty years later, he's a principal at Nielsen Norman Group and still making his feelings known when companies commit design errors.

Here, 'Tog' gives us a variety of thoughts on interface design, freedom, the future of computing, the iPhone's place in world history and why he travels around in a 400 sq ft motorhome while towing a 4x4 and two Segways.

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Web users 'prefer ads to charges'

Given the choice, most internet users would rather view ads than pay for web content, according to research by The US Direct Marketing Association.

The survey, of 1,000 adults, supports recent decisions by sites such as the New York Times to drop their subscriptions.  

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Just 38% pay for Radiohead album - study

The majority of people who downloaded Radiohead's latest album In Rainbows decided not to pay for the download, according to figures from comScore.

The band had been praised by many for its decision to bypass the record companies and allow fans to pay as much or as little as the liked to download the the album via its site.

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Innocent maybe, but highly effective

After working on email marketing for many years, I have certainly seen many examples of the good, the bad and the ugly, with many unfortunately falling into the latter two.

However, one brand is leading the way with an email newsletter that has kept me hooked for nearly two years with fresh and engaging content.

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MySpace launches new targeted ad platform

MySpace has announced a new targeted ad platform on the social network, which looks like a version of Google AdSense for display ads.

The system, SelfServe, is aimed at small businesses, politicians etc, and will allow advertisers to create and target display ads, as well as providing analytics tools to track their effectiveness. 

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Thoughts from our social media session

So much was covered that it would take a week to explore all the issues raised, but I thought I'd just note some of the key thoughts from the event...

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InSkin Media's 'unobtrusive' video ad format

InSkin Media has launched a new tool for advertisers that want to make the most of online video, but will viewers like it?

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How to use images to increase conversion

Webcredible’s Mrudula Kodali has published some handy tips for using photography in e-commerce – an issue etailers are increasingly grappling with as competition increases and search engines display more multimedia results.

Mrudula says photos can help consumers get a better feel of products on offer, but have to "work hard" to overcome the web's limitations.

See a brief run-through of her suggestions after the jump:

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