You're reading: Human Centricity VS. Product Centricity

Written for Festival of Marketing, 24 April 2019

What comes out on top? Product or person? In this weeks blog we put to two against one another to find out which strategy focus you should be adopting in today’s changing market.


The world is changing, in a myriad of ways. This is partly due to how we are able to share and communicate with ease and immediacy across our beloved web. But this immediacy breads impatience and expectation which breeds low reviews, quality control by the masses and a world where consumers are able to openly and, more often than not, honestly express their opinion on a product or service. Didn’t enjoy the food, tell the world about it and be deemed a local hero for saving the rest of us from a bad coq au vin. Equally – when you find the perfect shop assistant, share your experience via your social media and help those at the frontline of customer service reap the rewards of their hard-earned niceties. It’s a symbiotic relationship between the customer and the business, one in which both are well aware that if the product does what it says on the tin, or better yet, goes above and beyond that expectation, the brand, the staff, the business and the customer benefit from an entirely positive experience. Seems logical, seems simple, but so many brands get it wrong.


The key is to strike a perfect balance between what you can deliver and what you promise to deliver, versus how you deal with a problem when things inevitably go wrong. 

Having a focus on product centricity means that you can focus on the quality of the product, whilst simultaneously building a buzz and excitement around the next you chose to produce. Take the iPhone for example, for years it has ruled the roost as the must have phone amongst mobile users. Now, we see rising competition from Huawei, Samsung and Google. What drives the iPhone into the hands of its users? The camera isn’t as slick and the UX is arguably on par. It’s in the delivery of the product is where Apple continues to excel. From its simple and chic design to its relatable and humanistic campaigns that demonstrate the variety of people using the product; not to mention it’s effortless, futuristic and ergonomic packaging; kudos, Apple. 


So, what can we learn from those doing it right?


1. Transparency

From your ethics, morals, prices all the way to your returns policy and shipping deliverables. Make sure that the customers know exactly what they’re getting, when they’re getting it and exactly how much for. There is nothing more unattractive than a brand that misses the mark or miss-sells. Don’t be that guy/gal. Plus, if things do go wrong – tell your customers what has happened and explain how you plan on rectifying it. Sure, you may end up with a few angry people in the comment sections – but overall customers appreciate being kept in the loop, especially where money is concerned.


2. Embrace the humanity

We are creatures full of feelings and we need to feel empathy. From complaints to being able to visualise ourselves experiencing what is being sold – having a human approach to the way in which you deliver a product or service to market could be the tipping point for your customers’ experience. Where automation excels in time saving and segmentation, sometimes it lacks humanity – remember that sometimes all of us want to speak to a human, more so now than ever as technology and AI becomes smarter and more efficient. 


3. Quality above all else

As a general rule price reflects the value and thus the quality the customer can expect. Project well and project fairly but most importantly project in line with what your customer expects from your product or service, otherwise you could be in line for a swift one-star review.


Read the original article for Festival of Marketing here.

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