Thetutorpages.com teams up with Nextshoot to create video ads

Thetutorpages.com has teamed up with Nextshoot, one of the UK’s leading web video production companies, to create the UK’s first online video ads for private tutors. A wide range of education specialists – from piano and singing teachers to maths and French tutors – can now commission a tutor video to showcase their expertise.

The videos, which are shot by Nextshoot’s network of filmmakers, allow tutors to take advantage of a service that has previously been the preserve of companies. “Video creates instant rapport with potential students and parents,” states Henry Fagg, founder of The Tutor Pages. “It’s the closest you can get to meeting a tutor in person – a real chance for tutors to demonstrate their professionalism online.”

The specially-designed videos – promoted on thetutorpages.com and across other online platforms – are both cost-effective and flexible for tutors. The interview format shows the tutor talking and interacting with students in a natural way, and music teachers can also include footage of themselves playing their instrument.

Cherry Muckle, a London piano teacher registered on thetutorpages.com, sees video as a good way to get an edge over her online competitors. “It looks really professional and I think it is the most effective way of providing what the potential student wants when considering a teacher – to see them play, talk, interact with other students – all the stuff you can’t otherwise get across”.

HPI Warns Santa Dont Get Caught Out by the Used Car Criminals

Christmas is well known as the season of giving, and for a lucky few in the UK, Santa will be delivering their gift to the garage or driveway. But as generous loved ones play their role in the season of goodwill and look for that used car Christmas bargain, vehicle information expert HPI is warning them to avoid last-minute panic buying, and be on their guard from fraudsters ready to take advantage of the festive spirit.

Nicola Johnson, Consumer Services Manager at HPI says, “Whilst many people will be dreaming of owning a Ferrari or Porsche this Christmas, the reality is they probably won’t get one.  But they may well get a good quality second hand car which they will love just as much as a sports car.

“However, for those buying a used car as a present this Christmas, we can’t stress enough the importance of conducting a history check before they part with their hard earned money.  It’s fair to say that in the silly season many of us get carried away with the excitement of it all, and all too often make panic buying decisions because we are under pressure time-wise.  But the risks involved when buying a used car are present all year round, so buyers need to remain cautious.  The good news is these risks can very simply be avoided by carrying out an HPI Check.”

How to avoid the Christmas car criminal – HPI lists the top 4 risks to look out for:

  1. Outstanding Finance – This is the most common risk facing used car buyers with nearly 1 in 4 vehicles checked by HPI having outstanding finance. For many types of finance, the car actually belongs to the finance house until the debt is settled. If the loan remains unpaid or is defaulted on, the finance house could decide to reclaim the vehicle, meaning the buyer could lose the car as well as the money they paid for it.
  2. Stolen HPI discovers around 30 stolen vehicles a day.  Many are sold as ‘bargains’ to buyers, but if the police track the vehicle down, they will  return the car to its rightful owner, leaving the buyer thousands of pounds out of pocket.
  3. Insurance Write Offs Every year nearly half a million cars involved in accidents are declared by insurers to have been too badly damaged to ever be repaired safely and go back on the road. Some of these however still find their way back on to the road with 4 out of every 100 vehicles checked by HPI found to be written off.
  4. Clocking – 6 in every 100 vehicles checked by HPI have a mileage discrepancy. The HPI Check uses the National Mileage Register of more than 130 million mileage records, allowing them to alert car buyers and dealers to potential mileage discrepancies and helping to prevent them paying too much for a used car that has more miles on the clock than it appears.

“Although most people will no doubt be getting in to the festive spirit this Christmas, we urge consumers to keep their guard up against criminals trying to exploit the season of goodwill.” concludes Nicola Johnson.  

 

To conduct an HPI Check: log on to www.hpicheck.com or call 0845 300 8905

Manic Monday goes mobile as british use smartphones to shop

One in ten Brits will do their online Christmas shopping using their mobile phone rather than a computer this year, according to new research findings from Tesco Direct. The trend of using mobile phones for online shopping emerged in a study of 4,000 consumers. This comes as Tesco Direct gets ready to face its busiest online shopping day of the year, dubbed ‘Cyber Monday’ or ‘Manic Monday’ by retailers.

Busy work schedules and hectic lives will see millions of savvy bargain-hunters use their smartphone to find the latest deals for Christmas presents, the research shows. Nearly half will shop online using their phones while watching TV, one in six expect to buy something on their phone while sat on the bus and a quarter will log on to shopping sites through their mobiles during their daily commute.

The study was commissioned to examine the changing Christmas shopping habits of the nation following the launch of Tesco Direct’s new mobile web service, designed to facilitate easy shopping for customers directly through their phones.

Ian Crook, CMO for tesco.com comments: “Tesco Direct is expecting to ship more than 80,000 items today as we face our busiest day of the year for online orders. For the first time this year we anticipate a significant amount of these orders to be placed by customers using their mobile phones, because customers like the convenience of shopping on the go.”

The nationwide poll found 78 per cent are planning to do some of their Christmas shopping online this year and seven in ten think it’s the best way to buy presents. More than a third (36 per cent) said using their mobile would reduce stress levels and mean they could fit shopping in and around their busy lives.

Ian Crook continues: “In October alone, we had over half a million people visit the Tesco Direct website using their mobile phones and in the run up to Christmas we’re expecting this number to surge as people order their gifts from Tesco Direct. Our new mobile web service makes it easier for our customers to search for and buy presents at competitive prices and as our research shows it has potential to take away some of the stress of shopping.”

Simply avoiding the Christmas crowds was the biggest reason for turning to the internet, with 71 per cent saying they can’t stand battling queues in the shops. Another 44 per cent like to use the web to search for the best price.

 Tesco Direct top selling Christmas toys for 2010

  • Toy Story Space Ranger Buzz Lightyear
  • Lego Star Wars Imperial Star Destroyer
  • Kung Zhu Hamsters

The research also found that:

  • In the lead up to Christmas, 73 per cent are worried about the escalating cost of it all as they face tight budgets
  • Six in ten don’t know what to buy people
  • Half are stressed around Christmas
  • Nearly half (45 per cent) said they struggle fitting present shopping in around their job and family commitments
  • Seven per cent admitted to online shopping it when they should be working, and one in ten will hit the online shops during their lunch hours
  • Two thirds polled said they typically leave their shopping to the last minute
  • Online shopping saves the average Brit six hours of traipsing around the high street

The Tesco Direct mobile website was launched earlier this month to make it easier for people to shop online using smartphones. It features simple-to-explore product categories, which are easily navigated through a series of expandable tabs. It allows customers to:

  • Sign into /register for a Tesco Direct account
  • Search through the complete Tesco Direct product range
  • Read all the product features
  • Add products to the shopping basket
  • Explore delivery options and book a delivery slot
  • Locate the closest store
  • Read buying guides and product warranties
  • Look at product warranties
  • Add or remove products from an existing order
  • Check out and complete the order

To use the Tesco Direct mobile website, visit www.direct.tesco.com from any mobile phone that can access the internet.

The last Christmas delivery date for Tesco Direct is 22 December.  The last day for large Tesco Direct orders guaranteed to be delivered before Christmas is 16 December by 12 noon (for items like white goods or furniture).

Christmas Gifts 2010: No sextoys please, we’re British

Twenga, a comprehensive shopping search engine, asked Internet users about Christmas gifts they don’t want to receive. The results show that 42% of British consumers would be disappointed with a sextoy as their gift, and 38% would not like a scented candle.

The sextoy is indeed the least popular item in Europe, especially for the French, 47% of whom wouldn’t like to receive one. Classics such as gift vouchers, money and electrical appliances are more appreciated (respectively 13%, 13% and 14%).

What type of Christmas gift would you not enjoy receiving?

  United Kingdom France Germany Italy Spain The Netherlands
A gift voucher 13% 9% 24% 12% 19% 9%
Money 13% 11% 25% 12% 18% 20%
An electrical appliance 14% 20% 25% 13% 26% 20%
Chocolates 16% 12% 20% 20% 26% 20%
A book 18% 14% 26% 18% 13% 18%
A perfume 26% 11% 24% 15% 16% 14%
A tie or scarf 35% 50% 42% 43% 53% 45%
A scented candle 38% 36% 30% 31% 36% 36%
A sex toy or erotic gadget 42% 47% 34% 38% 28% 46%
Other 5% 3% 6% 3% 4% 2%
I don’t know 8% 6% 8% 7% 7% 8%

Methodology
Twenga asked over 3,000 European Internet users about their Christmas spending budgets for this year and how they intend to use it. The study by Novamétrie was conducted online for Twenga between 27th September and 7th October 2010 using a representative sample of 3013 European Internet users from the United Kingdom, Germany, France, Italy, Spain and the Netherlands.

Internet Shopping Could Cost British Businesses Dearly this Christmas

UK Employers Stand to Lose £300 Million a Week in Lost Productivity

Bloxx, an innovator in web and email filtering, today warned the forecasted increase in Internet shopping could end up costing the UK economy millions of pounds in lost business productivity in the run up to Christmas.

Online retail industry group IMRG and consultants Capgemini recently stated that they expected online sales this Christmas to reach £6.4 billion, up 16% on 2009 sales. According to the Business Software Alliance, 46% of online shopping takes place during working hours. 

Using an average of just one hour spent browsing shopping websites or reading and reacting to shopping related emails during the working week and using an hourly pay rate of £12.50, Bloxx estimates that UK employers could stand to loose up to £300 million a week in lost productivity over the next six weeks.

“Most organisations will allow their employees to spend a reasonable amount of time shopping online or receiving shopping related emails,” said Eamonn Doyle, Bloxx Chief Executive Officer. “However, with the addictive nature of online shopping and retailers using frequent emails to drive traffic to their sites, it can be all too easy for employees to get carried away and end up spending excessive amounts of time shopping when they should be working.”

To address the problem, employers need to act now by ensuring that they have a comprehensive Internet and Email Acceptable Use Policy in place and that they have filtering that allows them to proactively manage personal use of web and email.

“Companies need to ensure that they have a clear Acceptable Use Policy for personal Internet usage during working hours and ensure that this is communicated regularly to employees. Employees need to know what is acceptable and what the consequences could be for breaking the policy,” concludes Doyle.

Case-mates Crazy Commercials: Telepathic Monoliths and Severed Appendiges

Case-mate, maker of cell phone and Apple cases and accessories, has a new video series circulating on the web via YouTube.  Their first straight-to-web effort, these new clips range from eerie to “Dear, Me!” 

First up, Kung Fu Hustle meets Stanley Kubrick – to make a custom iPhone Case, you can make your own iPhone 3GS and soon for iPhone 4 case at www.imakemycase.com. I certainly do like some of the designs on there and the fact that you can actually design it yourself! 🙂

2010: A Case Odyssey

While next, one poor sap awakes to discover the plight of living with hands made from Steel Wool – and the damage that can be done to iPhone’s glass screen when making an emergency call.

Living With Steel Wool Hands (How I Lost My Nipple)

Social Media Revolution 2009

Social Media Revolution: Is social media a fad? Or is it the biggest shift since the Industrial Revolution? This video details out social media facts and figures that are hard to ignore. This video is produced by the author of Socialnomics.

Brits warm to taking laptops on holiday

Although one in ten men (9 per cent) admits to working on holiday, the vast majority of Britons (92 per cent) believe that taking a laptop on vacation would not cause arguments with their partner or family. This is a chief finding of a nationwide survey unveiled today into Britons’ use of technology on holiday.

The online study of more than 2,200 members of the Great British public carried out by YouGov and Softwareload.co.uk, Deutsche Telekom’s online download portal for software applications, also found that whenever possible 13 per cent of Britons take their laptops on holiday with them. 16 per cent of men take their laptop away on holiday compared to just a tenth (10 per cent) of women. Just four per cent of women said they do a little work on holiday when they take their laptop with them on holiday. But technology hasn’t completely taken over; only five per cent of Britons say they would choose using recreational software on the laptop – such as educational software – while on holiday over reading a good book.

“While holiday is often a time to leave work behind and maybe even switch off the mobile, technology can enhance our holiday time with useful travel guides, language learning and translation apps available for laptops and mobiles,” said Dirk Lebzien, Head of Softwareload. “Our research shows that people are comfortable with their partner bringing their laptop computer on holiday with them, and thankfully few people are choosing work when on vacation.”

Softwareload’s study also found that a large number (39 per cent) of those surveyed are ‘embarrassed’ that they can’t speak the local language on holiday. Women (42 per cent) are slightly more likely than men (37 per cent) to feel embarrassed from just using English. 18-24 year-olds (43 per cent) and 25-34 year-olds (45 per cent) are more likely to feel embarrassed about not speaking the local language than any other group.

27 per cent of 18-24 year-olds said they would find translation software and offline maps stored on their mobile phone useful when on holiday, a higher percentage than any other group. Currently, although 31 per cent of UK holiday makers are aware that travel apps and dictionaries are available on mobile devices, only six per cent of Brits regularly use them, Softwareload found.

Organise your weblife with Gemsta.com!

Not quite sure why Prime plc, a company who funds, designs, constructs and maintains buildings is launching Gemsta, a social networking site which lets you quickly and easily FIND, SAVE and SHARE things you find online whether that be for shopping, travel or work.

But I guess it just goes to show you any business can have a go! Here’s a press release which may be of some interest.

Are you one of the many internet users who often search for the same information across a number of your favourite sites? If the answer is YES, then Gemsta can offer you a platform to create a free centralised search location to access your frequently queried resources.

Gemsta’s unique MultiSearch technology, which allows users to search multiple sites simultaneously, can be now be customised to help find anything quickly and easily from a personal choice of sites. Gemsta requires no specialist software and is accessible from anywhere online. Up to 16 sites per zone can be organised into structured grids or funky frames with added colourful backgrounds.

“It takes a matter of minutes to organise your weblife, simply register and complete a four step process using the Find Wizard,” explains Jonathan Franklin, managing director, Gemsta.com. “You can choose from over 400 sites including search engines, shopping sites and social media sites. Just select a frame, drag your chosen logos into the 16 space grid, choose a background, name your zone and you are away!” continues Jonathan.

The Find Wizard is just one part of the newly structured FIND within Gemsta.com. It joins comparison shopping, vouchers and deals, 3D shopping and wishlist – plus the comprehensive

pre-organised shopping zones and 6 web search zones. Once you’ve found FIND you’ll wonder how you ever got on without it!!

Plus coming soon – the ability to SAVE anything you FIND on the web and organise it into personalised folders, then SHARE it with a chosen few or the whole world.

Gemsta Website: http://www.gemsta.com
Gemsta Blog: http://www.gemsta.net

 Gemsta