Product Outranks Positioning and Packaging According to Leading Marketers

Robert Boyar, CMO of LW Brand design conducted a “quickie ranking” of six important marketing variables among a select group of marketing professionals. The 42 survey respondents came from a networking group of marketing executives who are MENG members comprised of select group of 1,800 senior marketing executives.

The majority of respondents -- over 60% -- voted the product as the most important marketing tool. Ranked in order, next came positioning then product, packaging, advertising, promotion and finally price.

The table below shows a summary of the responses.


Though admittedly an incomplete list based on only 42 responses, many of the respondents are presently marketing leaders in their organizations.

My view: this shows that without a good product or service no amount of branding, promotion or low pricing will make it a success. So make sure your product fulfills a human need and then match it to those individuals who will get the most out of it. If those two things are in balance, then you are on your way to a successful marketing effort.

This seems so basic, yet I see this violated  by marketers every day. Even Apple created a dud with the cube computer. What about Microsoft's first iteration of Zune? Even the latest version is floundering. Most American cars never managed to catch up to the quality of Japanese, German or even South Korean cars. All of these products received millions of dollars of marketing support. Yet they failed.

The story here is not that new products fail. But rather that skilled marketing is no cure for a fundamentally weak product.

What other examples come to mind for you? Have you seen great products succeed in spite of the product positioning or bad advertising?

Posted on June 4, 2008 and filed under General.