Is positioning still relevant today? Part three

Here are some thought starters related to my belief that positioning is generally a pointless exercise:

According to Industry Week magazine, 70% of today’s manufactured goods will be obsolete in six years. There are estimated to be more than 30,000 new product introductions in the US alone every year, just in the packaged goods market. According to AC Nielsen, up to 90% of products fail. This means that as many as 27,000 of those new products will fail.

Despite approximately US$1.5 trillion spent on marketing annually and over US$500 million spent on advertising alone in the US, the annual US based “Most Memorable New Product Launch Survey 2007”, found that unaided, 77% of respondents could not name one of the top 50 new products of 2007, even if it was a strong well recognised brand.

The development of a positioning strategy takes time and the communication of that ‘position’ will be the responsibility of an advertising agency and that agency will, generally speaking use mass media to communicate the position.

With such short life times and high failure rates, isn’t it time companies reviewed the tools/tactics/strategies/channels etc that they are using to build brands? Don’t they owe it to their shareholders, investors, customers, the environment to do something about this?

What do you think?