How a SWOT Analysis
Can Help You.



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What is a SWOT Analysis and how can it help you?
It's a powerful tool for developing your business strategy.

Throughout this website you’ll find articles articles I've written about the importance of developing a strategy for your business. The question is, how do you figure out what strategy to use?

That’s where this Analysis can help.

A SWOT, though fairly straightforward to understand, is a powerful strategy development tool that may take some time to complete. When finished, it will allow you to see into the realities of your business, your competition, and overall market conditions. SWOT GRAPHIC1 SWOT stands for Strengths, Weaknesses, Oopportunities, and Threats. That’s it. Seems simple enough, doesn’t it? It is possible to do a cursory SWOT analysis on a single piece of paper. Of course, the more superficial your analysis, the less powerful it will be.

What many of my clients have found is that once they begin their SWOT, the analysis coaxes out more and more information and they find themselves examining and evaluating many parts of their business in greater depths than ever before. This usually leads to a more realistic view of their business and marketing conditions. They find it makes strategic planning for the future easier.

Done with commitment, a SWOT Analysis can form the basis of an entire business and marketing plan. Follow this brief outline to create your SWOT.

STRENGTHS
1. What are your strengths? What makes them strengths? How can you best monetize those strengths?

swot analysis

2. What are your competitors’ strengths? Do your strengths differentiate or niche your business from theirs?
3. What are the strengths of the market? How do current market strengths support your business activities?

WEAKENESSES
1. What are your business's weaknesses? How can you address them?2. What about your competitors’ weaknesses? How can you exploit them?
3. What weaknesses in the market do you need to adjust for?

OPPORTUNITIES
1 What opportunities are present within your business, or the overall market that you can capitalize on?
2. Do those same opportunities exist for your competitors?
3. What entry barriers exist, or can be created to prevent your competitors from taking advantage of those opportunities?

THREATS
1. What threats to your company’s growth exist within the company itself?
2. What threats do competitors pose?
3. What threats to your growth are present in the marketplace?

SWOT GRAPHIC2 I generally recommend adding two more letters to the acronym, changing it to a SWOTTS analysis. This stands for Strengths, Weaknesses, Opportunities, Threats, Trends, Sales.

TRENDS
1. What trends do you see within your company?
2. What trends do you see developing among your competitors that you can capitalize on, or that may signal trouble ahead?
3. What trends do you see generally in the marketplace? Do they work against you, or can you turn them to your advantage?

SALES
1. What is selling well and what isn’t? Why?
2. Is the same true for your competitors? Why? Why not?
3. What about for the market in general?

There are many more questions you can apply within a SWOT ANALYSIS. The more you breakdown and think through each aspect of your SWOT, the more useful it is as a marketing strategy development tool, so take your time and if it’s useful, seek out additional information and professional help.

You’ll find more articles and resources about this subject throughout this website, including the articles listed below, so be sure to ‘click around!’

-by Andrew Sokol
Andrew Sokol is a Business and Marketing Strategist.
He is also the publisher of this website.
Andrew is available for private consulting and public speaking.
He can be reached by clicking Contact Us

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