Is the customer always right?March 31st, 2014

The old adage, “the customer is always right” is of course a good business practice. But is it correct?

No, not always.

Sounds revolutionary right?   Not really, hear me out. the-customer-is-always-right

As a web development professional, your duty is to do the right thing by your clients. You should always recommend the best course of action. You should never just rubber-stamp an idea just because it belongs to your client. Now of course, you are in business and you need to please your customers. But don’t be a sycophant. Tell them your opinion as to what they should do. Now of course if they choose to go against you, that is up to them. At that point you need to back off.

Of course you want an example of this correct?

Okay, here’s a case that illustrates what I’m talking about. I had a client who wanted to go with a custom designed, responsive WordPress web site. Now, I love building these websites. We build quite a few of these types of sites, and most of the time I think it’s a fabulous idea. But, in this case, the client was a nonprofit, just starting out with very little funding. I knew that I could save them a lot of money, and build a kick ass website using a premium theme. With several thousand available, that are responsive and very high-quality, this was a better way for them to go. As they were in a rush to get this up and running, the premium theme would be much quicker to market. The design process adds quite a bit of time, and then of course we have to build out the WordPress theme. Now, most companies would love to go with the more expensive solution and would never even suggest a cheaper alternative. But at RooSites, we have built a company based on doing the right thing, even if it costs us money in the short term. Why? Not because we’re such amazing human beings. It is a business strategy, to take a long view and build long-term relationships based on trust.

Bottom line: The adage that the customer is always right is not necessarily true. Do the right thing by them, give your recommendations and let them decide. You and your customers will profit in the long term.


Social Media: Top 5 Tips for PostsSeptember 23rd, 2013

RooSites Social Media When I speak to groups about social media, typically people want advice as to what to post.

Here are my top 5 tips to use as a guideline:

  1. Interesting :: Only post something that you find interesting. If you think it is dull, imagine what your readers will think?
  2. SME :: Write posts that position you as a SME, that is a subject matter expert. You can never go wrong posting things that show off your expertize.
  3. Limit Sales Talk :: Limit posts that are too salesy.   I think 20 percent is the limit.  If every post says what a great deal you offer, people will quickly start ignoring you, unfollowing, un-liking and un-everything 🙁
  4. No Politics :: On business accounts, stick to your business. Don’t post political rants. (unless of course you are a politician or in an industry that works with political parties)  Otherwise you piss off those who who have opposing views. In this business climate you want to conduct business with everyone you can.
  5. Mix it Up ::  I try to have a mix of helpful tips, occasional relevant quotes, company news, information about offerings and occasional sales content.  Once in a while we brag about something, but keep the bragging to occasional as to not sound obnoxious. Pictures are great and when I launch new site I always post a screenshot and link to the new site. Images are especially effective on Facebook as people love to go through photos and these are the most popular posts on that site.

So an often asked question is: How do I know if I am effective?  I use re-tweets in twitter as barometer. If I am re-tweeted on a regular basis, chances are people like what I am posting. In Facebook, likes and shares are a good measure. In Google+, plus 1s are a good indicator, though I don’t see this practice in use much.

Please let me know what you think are are good tips for social media posts by commenting in the form below.

Note: Barry Roos is available to speak to your group on Social Media strategy as well as other web topics. Contact us to schedule.