How to Create a SWOT (or SWOTT) Analysis
Trying to stay ahead of the game? Is something not quite right with your business? Need to stay on top of your goals? A SWOT analysis can be a great way to organize your company and make the proper business decisions that are vital to your company’s future.
This week’s Momentum Monday blog will give you a clear understanding of how to conduct a SWOT analysis and give you the information you need to create an effective marketing plan.
“SWOTT” or “SWOT” is an acronym that stands for: strengths, weaknesses, opportunities, threats, and trends. Strengths and weaknesses are internal to a company, meaning there are things that a business owner has the ability to change certain elements within his or her company.
A business needs to explore new opportunities, and trends in order to stay on make a proper decision while eliminating current or future threats. If these opportunities or threats are not recognized and taken care of, then it can be detrimental to a company’s growth.
A SWOT analysis allows business owners to evaluate their position in the marketplace.
At Momentum Digital, we frequently use the SWOT analysis. This form of research helps marketers determine how to predict sales, opportunities, increase business brand awareness. A SWOT analysis helps the business reach their maximum ROI (return on investment) by managing the data and allocating the proper budget to the marketing plan.
Using a SWOT Analysis
When using a SWOT analysis the business will research as well as list their strengths and weaknesses. Once their strengths and weaknesses have been determined the next steps are to identify the opportunities, threats, and trends the business will most likely face in the future. A SWOT analysis can be performed by an individual in the company, as stated above. Meaning a manager or business owner can create a SWOT analysis. Having multiple employees utilize this strategy can help everyone understand and get involved more at work.
The first steps for creating an effective SWOT analysis consists of asking the right questions and then understanding the answers to them. By asking the questions below, your business will be able to determine what data is needed to create the SWOT analysis.
Questions to ask during the SWOT analysis process:
- What advantages does your organization have?
- What experience do you have?
- What defines your business? (why is your business the best?)
- What unique resources can you offer that others can’t?
- What factors mean that you “get the sale”?
- What is your organization’s USP? (unique selling point)
- What could you improve?
- What should you avoid?
- What are people in your market seeing as weaknesses?
- What factors lose you sales?
- In what areas do you need to improve?
- What resources do you lack?
- What parts of your business are not very profitable?
- Where do you need further education and/or experience?
- What costs you time and/or money?
- What good opportunities can you spot that will help your business goal?
- Are there any social or event opportunities? (this will help your organization spread brand awareness)
- What interesting trends are you aware of?
- Are there new target audiences you have the potential to reach?
- Are there related products and services that provide an opportunity for your business?
- What obstacles does your business face?
- What are your competitors doing?
- What are your competitor’s strengths?
- Have you checked if Technology is threatening your company?
- What’s going on in the economy?
- What’s going on in the Industry?
- When you started your business, what did you see that you wanted to change?
- What trends have your competitors tried and are trying?
- What changes in trends are you seeing? How does your brand fit in?
- What social trends are benefiting your business?
- What social trends are hurting your business?
- What trends are approaching your organization’s niche?
How do you design a SWOT analysis?
SWOT analysis usually consists of a chart divided into 5 squares, each square represents an acronym of the SWOT analysis. Creating a layout is actually quite simple. There are many free SWOT analysis templates online. There are many tools and platforms you can use to design a free SWOT analysis. Platforms such as google sheets excel, word doc, google docs, and canva. These simple and organized platforms will make creating analysis a breeze, and take the technical troubles out of the way.
If you’re interested in creating your own SWOT analysis template you can watch my screencast here! In this “How To” video, we use the website canva.
Implementing the Data Compiled in a SWOT Analysis
The last and most important part of your SWOT analysis is following through with the information you have gathered about your business. There is not a point to the analysis if your company does not follow through.
Here’s an example of how I usually implement the data I gathered from SWOT analysis.
- Create a plan on how you are going to build your current strengths and decrease your current weakness.
- By creating SMART goals, that are achievable the business can determine what direction works best for their strengths and how to improve their weakness.
- Once this is completed review the data you gathered in your SWOT analysis. Question your findings, are there any areas where you can eliminate a weakness by building on a current strength or opportunity?
- Are there areas in your business that you need to avoid due to the weakness?
Creating and utilizing a strategic marketing plan through a SWOT analysis is vital for a business to continue successfully growing. The SWOT analysis is a vital research tool that you can use over and over again in your business. A SWOT data helps business unfold new opportunities, reach a broader audience, maximize and focus on strengths, and improve your decision-making process. This is done by creating a strategic formula curated to your business through understanding your competitors and maximizing potential opportunities and beneficial trends.