In every marketing strategy plan, the first step in determining your current position in the market is through a comprehensive SWOT analysis. This helps you identify and improve your Strengths and Weakness while focusing on the external Opportunities and Threats that may positively or negatively affect your company.
In a SWOT analysis, Strengths are considered part of the internal factors favorable to your marketing strategy plan. This basically covers areas regarding your competencies, assets, income generation, and other intangibles like customer support and positive public image and reputation, good admin – employees relationship, and camaraderie in the work place. When you define your strengths, it must reflect the present situation and have a clear plan on how you will be able to maintain and nurture it so these factors will always be the driving force of your company.
Weaknesses can be derived both from internal and external factors. These are usually the areas in your operation that may have a negative impact on your marketing strategy plan. The purpose of creating a list of your weaknesses is so you can adjust your strategies to include improvements in these areas. Among the common weaknesses of companies are where your operation is losing money, lack of experience, skills, and or resources among others. Weaknesses can also account for a bad reputation, significant decline in the levels of trust among consumers, or simply due to the absence of any strength.
Opportunities are basically external factors that offer potential benefits for your business. When creating a marketing strategy plan, having a good grasp of the opportunities is highly beneficial. This enables you to take advantage of various factors that may have positive effects on your endeavors such as the current economic condition, cultural climate, market volume, economic demand, etc. When you know your opportunities, you can also see the actual needs of your target market that are not being met. In essence, these opportunities are actually your future strengths and must be prioritized.
Although threats are usually viewed as an external condition that may impede your marketing strategy plans, they can also be viewed internally. Threats can be an unstable economic condition, cultural differences, unfriendly social conditions, significant changes in political stability, new industry regulations and legislation, and the current position of your competitor. Internally, threats are often found in the workplace such as the unstable admin – employee relationship and other related conditions. As opposed to Opportunities, Threats in essence are your company’s future weaknesses and must be addressed as soon as possible.
With the help of a SWOT analysis, you can analyze your business internally against your various resources, financial standing, support, etc. When you look at various external factors, you can examine various areas of the economy, political stability, industrial regulations, demographic, social, competitions, and technology that may have a direct impact on your business.