With the inevitable return to work upon us all, we’ve put together the stories in the world of digital marketing you may have missed while you were enjoying your turkey and welcoming in the new year…

Promoted Pins Now Available to All Advertisers

Following the success of its beta program, digital scrapbook site Pinterest has made its promoted pins available to all advertisers as of January 1, 2015.

The social sharing site, which made the promoted pins service available to selected brands last year, claims those who participated saw a 30% increase in “earned media” or the amount of people who save a Promoted Pin to one of the boards.

“We’re aiming for the holy grail here: trying to provide the right content to the right people, at the right time,” said Dana Shank, an associate director at Kraft Foods.

Shank added that a platform where users are actively looking for particular content and potentially looking to make a purchase is “invaluable” to companies like his own.

Concerned Banks Delay Apple Pay UK

A UK launch for Apple Pay has been thrown into jeopardy due to concerns from one of the UK’s top banks over data collection.

Bankers are not only uneasy about the amount of personal and financial information required by Apple. Some have expressed concern that Apple Pay could lead to an infiltration of the banking industry.

Consulting firm McKinsey recently reported that payments make up 80% of customer interaction with banks, which would be eliminated for those who opt for Apple Pay.

The contactless payment service, which has been developed with credit card companies in mind, has already been used by two million iPhone 6 owners in the US.

John Lewis Reports Successful Christmas

UK retail giant John Lewis saw a 4.8% rise in like-for-like sales across the five-week run up to Christmas, reaching £777 million due to strong online growth, the popularity of Black Friday offers and its hugely successful Monty the Penguin advertising campaign.

Online spending trumped in-store purchases, which saw a slump over the Christmas period, yet John Lewis’ managing director Andy Street maintained that the role of the shop was “absolutely critical” in assisting online sales.

Street also remarked on the growing popularity of Black Friday sales. Despite the event resulting in the company’s biggest trading week on record, Street questioned the profitability of banking on just one day to drive a huge increase in sales.

Shoppers Reduce Christmas Costs with Mobile Technology

New research found that consumers are using mobile technology more than ever to keep down the cost of Christmas shopping.

Data provided by ParcelHero showed that shoppers are also using specific mobile apps to ensure their transactions are secure and to keep tabs on their spending.

Roger Sumner-Rivers, founder of ParcelHero, said: “Consumers have recognised the fact that buyers have more rights when ordering online, and are also using the latest digital technologies to ensure they keep a close rein on their budget, and make their purchases as secure as possible.”

GM Steps Up Pursuit of In-Car Ads

Finally, a feature from GM’s OnStar, AtYourService, is set to enable “information, convenience and money-saving values” sent automatically to car dashboards using entered destinations as cues for which discounts and promotions to send.

The opt-in service requires a request for directions from an OnStar advisor, who will offer promotions to be sent to a car.

GM has announced AtYourService partnerships with Dunkin Donuts, Audiobooks.com, RetailMeNot and Entertainment Book and Parkopedia for parking information.