Perceived Value Vs Optics

Perceived Value

Definition: Perceived value refers to the customer’s assessment of the worth of a product or service based on the benefits they receive relative to the cost they pay. It is how customers view the overall value proposition of a product or service.

Key Characteristics:

  1. Customer-Centric: Focuses on delivering genuine value to the customer.
  2. Substantive: Involves actual benefits such as quality, service, convenience, reliability, and additional features.
  3. Long-Term Impact: Builds trust and loyalty over time, leading to repeat business and positive word-of-mouth.
  4. Integrated Strategy: Often part of a broader strategy to improve product/service offerings, customer satisfaction, and brand reputation.

Example: A company improves the quality of its oil change services, offers transparent pricing, and trains staff to be more knowledgeable and friendly. These actions genuinely enhance the customer’s experience and satisfaction, increasing the perceived value of the service.

Doing Something for Optics

Definition: Doing something for optics refers to actions taken primarily to create a favorable public image or impression, rather than to provide real, substantive benefits. These actions are often superficial and designed to give the appearance of value or responsiveness without meaningful change or impact.

Key Characteristics:

  1. Image-Centric: Focuses on how the actions will be perceived by others, often to enhance reputation or avoid criticism.
  2. Superficial: May involve token gestures or temporary fixes that do not address underlying issues or provide substantial benefits.
  3. Short-Term Impact: Aims for immediate positive reactions but may fail to build long-term trust or loyalty if the lack of substance is revealed.
  4. Public Relations Strategy: Often used as part of a PR campaign to manage perceptions, respond to criticism, or align with trends.

Example: A company makes a big announcement about implementing new environmentally friendly practices but only takes minimal actions that do not significantly impact sustainability. The primary goal is to appear eco-conscious to customers and stakeholders without committing to real, meaningful change.


  • Perceived Value: Focuses on genuinely enhancing the customer’s experience and delivering real benefits, resulting in sustained customer satisfaction and loyalty.
  • Doing Something for Optics: Aims to create a favorable impression without substantial or lasting improvements, potentially leading to distrust if the superficial nature of the actions is exposed.

Understanding this difference helps businesses prioritize actions that truly benefit customers and build lasting relationships over those that merely serve to create a temporary positive image.