The Week in Marketing, Google and SEO

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The Week in Marketing, Google and SEO

Grab a coffee and enjoy this week’s marketing views and news.

  1. Is the customer always right plus additional resources
  2. Google News: Google IO, 
  3. Stuff You Should Read
  4. HOA of the week

Is The Customer Always Right?

Watch on YouTube:



No time to watch, download and listen while you work, walk, or sip your Margarita on the deck. 🙂


Listen on SoundCloud:



Is the belief that the customer is always right, always good customer service?

“Rule #1 — The Customer is Always Right”; Rule #2 – If the Customer is Ever Wrong, Re-Read Rule #1.”

B.L. who once handled publicity for Stew Leonard’s cited the quotes that’s etched in a three-ton granite rock at each of their store’s entrance.


Stew Leonard Customer is Always Right


B.L. asked Stew Leonard if people ever took advantage of this principle and ripped the store off. He replied:

“2% of people dishonest, I’m not going to penalize the 98% percent who are honest. …If sometimes they’re wrong, so what? I look at my customer as a lifetime value of thousands and thousands of dollars and that’s worth gold to me.”

The customer is the ultimate value.

But employees are also valued according to Stew Leonard.

“You can’t be a great place to shop without first making it a great place to work.”

Employees are your customer facing representative. The perception the customer has of your business is directly related to their experience with them.

It’s important to empower your employees to solve problems.

To empower employees, you need to…

  1. Hire people with
    1. a. social personalities
    2. b. initiative
  2. Implement a thorough training program.
  3. Offer a wage reflective of the value they provide you.

Is there a difference between product and service providers?

In his article for Customers Are Not Always Right. They Are Just Never Wrong, Zeke Adkins says:

“With product-companies, there’s less ambiguity in customers’ dissatisfaction:

Complaints usually center on the product’s being broken or the wrong color. On the other hand when services are provided, there’s a lot of room for interpretation of how a customer’s expectations should be met.”


And now for the flip side:

Top 5 Reasons Why ‘The Customer Is Always Right’ Is Wrong by Alexander Kjerulf

1: It Makes Employees Unhappy

The “always right” maxim squarely favors the customer which is a bad idea, because, as Bethune says, it causes resentment among employees.

2: It Gives Abrasive Customers an Unfair Advantage

it means that abusive people get better treatment and conditions than nice people.

3: Some Customers Are Bad for Business

Is it sometimes it’s better to fire a bad customer?

4: It Results in Worse Customer Service

CEO Hal Rosenbluth wrote an excellent book about their approach called Put The Customer Second – Put your people first and watch’em kick butt.

Employees who are happy at work give better customer service because:

– They care more about other people, including customers

– They have more energy

– They are happy, meaning they are more fun to talk to and interact with

– They are more motivated

5: Some Customers Are Just Plain Wrong

Any business needs to put its people first — and watch them put the customers first.


Have you ever had to fire a client?



Lunch Bunch Take Out

2. Curation Resources via the Ray2Go Takeouts

At the end of each #RayBunch show, we leave you with our Takeout – links to resources that help you dig deeper into our featured topic.


Ray:  Top 5 Reasons Why ‘The Customer Is Always Right’ Is Wrong by Alexander Kjerulf

5 reasons customer isn't always right


Jess: When Solving User Problems Go Too Far by Carin Dow

solving problems go too far

Scott: Return to Spender A look at the myth of the Nordstrom tire return.

return to spender

B.L.: People power: turning customer experience into a marketing tool via The Guardian.

people power


Randy:  The Customer is Always Right opening scene from movie, Sin City

Sin City


Google News

Google IO


The annual Google IO took place this week and with it, the unveiling and updating of many features in the Google/Android world.

A lot of the changes seem to be a move by Google to improve usability, specifically Google Photos and One Tap.

There was a lot of chatter in my Google+ stream about the absence of any mention of Google+.

Barry Horowitz Vice President of Google Streams, Photos and Sharing, released an interview on the day of the conference where he stated that:

“No, Google Plus is not dead. In fact, it’s got more signs of life than it’s had in some time.”

Read the interview below in the Stuff You Should Read section.

Here’s some highlights from the first day of Google IO via The Verge:


Google Now on Tap

With Now on Tap, you can hold the home button and bring up Now cards with relevant information, whether you’re in an app, email, or web browser.

A new Google Photos app with free online storage

Google already has a photo tool for your Android phone, but Google Photos is a revamped app that will back up an unlimited number of photos and videos for free (photos up to 16MP, video up to 1080p), organize them as a timeline, and group them together by locations, things like “beaches” or “boats,” and people — using what purports to be some pretty advanced auto-tagging.

App permissions get streamlined.

Instead of having to apply permission every time you install an app, Google will ask you to approve individual permissions when the developer calls them up. You can also look up everything that the app is accessing, or which ones are using, say, your calendar or camera.


For more news, check out Android Central who does a nice job covering and organizing the event.


SEO News

SEO Strategy During A Website Redesign Or Migration

SEO Strategy

Stock image aside, this is a very helpful article that provides a guide to holding on to your hard earned SEO assets when you have to redesign or migrate your site.

I went through this process last year and thankfully, I had the assistance of many of my SEO web geek friends on Google+ who held my hand through the process.


Know your website – Create a list of all the URLs on your site and identify pages that may need a 301 redirect.

Analyze Inbound Links – Inbound links help develop authority for your pages in search. As URLs change, links that point to your digital content will need to be updated.

Conduct An SEO Audit – An SEO audit can identify the strengths, weaknesses, risks, and opportunities of your current website.

A few things to look for:

Missing page titles

Duplicate page titles

Missing H1 tags

Duplicate H1 tags

Multiple H1 tags

Missing meta descriptions

Duplicate meta descriptions

Meta descriptions over 923 pixels

Site speed and performance

URL structure

Live And Breathe Analytics

What To Look For:

Crawl errors

Mobile usability

Pages indexed

Top keywords driving traffic

Organic search traffic

And, of course, remember to download your backup file – just in case!


7 Things You Need to Know About SEO to Remain Relevant in 2015 by Aaron Agius

7 things need to know SEO


SEO is always changing. 

Even a non SEO expert like me has noted a dynamic evolution in the last couple of years that has impacted on everything I do in the digital marketing space.

This is especially true of Content Marketing.

I found this article a good guide for brands who may need to update their SEO or SEO provider.

1. Implement mobile traffic optimization.

2. Learn about penalty/negative SEO monitoring and recovery.

3. Move away from keyword rankings to return-on-investment measurements.

4. Apply traditional PR to link building.

5. Pursue broader, more precise buyer keywords.

6. Pair technical SEO with content marketing campaigns.

7. Know the difference between expressed and implied links.

– Expressed links actually provide a link to the resource mentioned.

– Implied links only mention the resource, but don’t provide an actual link to click.



Stuff You Should Read


Bradley Horowitz Says That Google Photos is Gmail for Your Images. And That Google Plus Is Not Dead.  by Steven Levy

Bradley Horowiitz

Since Bradley Horowitz took over the Google Plus folder last April, he’s been quiet as to what is happening with the platform.

When people noted that his title didn’t include Google+, death knell rang loudly once more.

Timed to coincide with the Google IO conference, Bradley comes out and says clearly that Google+ in fact, is not dead.

It will continue to evolve and devolve as they tweak the platform to what users want.

He admits Google hasn’t been clear about who the product is good for and good at so they are now articulating a better value proposition.

“It’s fair to say you’re about to see a huge shift in what Plus is becoming,”

“It’s a shift in response to what users are telling us. That’s a very healthy and natural thing. As opposed to sticking to strategies of years ago, we’re actually adapting to how the product is successful in market and doubling-down on that.”

No, Google Plus is not dead. In fact, it’s got more signs of life than it’s had in some time. ~ Bradley Horowitz.Click To Tweet


HOA of the Week
Just Right Tribe: A Conversation with Alan Cohen
Jess Scott and You


This is Jess & Scott’s last show of the season.

I’m rarely able to catch it live as it broadcasts when I’m usually taking my bubble bath.

So when I did finally watch it this week, I found it a welcome relief from my immersion in technology and marketing.

They and their guest, author and speaker Alan Cohen, chat about:

~ Synchronicity and that there is more to life than our five senses show us

~ Challenges and opportunities and how your #JustRightTribe affirms you and the tribe

~ A deep understanding that each of us bring ideas that are capable of changing the world

Sometimes we forget that marketers are people too and we need to stop chasing our tails long enough to ask ourselves “why”.


That’s it for this week. Drop me a line and let me know what else you’d like to see in this newsletter.

If you’re free on Tuesday for lunch, join the #RayBunch at 12:15 pm ET.


About Ray Hiltz

Thanks for dropping by. I'm the Director of Digital Marketing for My background in business includes non-profit (performing arts), restaurants and Promotions. Having moved on from my own strategic consulting company, I now write about what interests me. So in this blog, you may read about my thoughts on marketing, health issues and business culture. You can follow me on Twitter @rayhiltz or @image24Call

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