Holiday shopping this year was a bit different than in the past. A recent study shows that Facebook and Twitter have influenced 28% of purchases, mainly through product reviews and word-of-mouth information on bargains and deals. BusinessWeek reported on this, stating that "seven percent of survey respondents said they have followed a company's Facebook fan page to receive alerts on special deals."

Traditional marketing is not working. People skip ads on TV. The magazine and newspaper industries are in a tailspin. What people do listen to is their friends.

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