A competitive assessment of current and anticipated products is one of the first and most essential steps in the brand positioning process. It’s a vital step because it reveals the current or desired positions for the competitive set, and you can learn a great deal from this assessment. When competitive assessment is coupled with unmet needs in the marketplace, the findings become a huge piece of the puzzle of where you should aim to position your product. If you embark upon early brand positioning, you will know the space you want to own in the marketplace after product launch and can design the Phase III trials accordingly. Unfortunately, in far too many cases, the Phase III data do not support the desired brand positioning because the brand positioning process is started too late to help drive the desired data.