Shoppers generally prefer to make tech-accessory purchases in bricks-and-mortar stores, but social media still has a role to play in driving sales, says Chris Ely, research manager for the Consumer Electronics Association. Data show that deals and special offers can boost social buzz, driving people to branded websites or into stores. "Promotions and discounts drive people to get involved in social media," Ely says. "The fact that people are looking for more deals can help drive retailer sales."

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