Almost everyone involved in the business world is aware of SWOT.SWOT is an analysis which helps firms to identify the internal and external factors that might affect future performance. Even though SWOT is commonly used by the management teams, it can prove great for branding and marketing as well.

SWOT is an acronym. The letters stand for strengths, weaknesses, opportunities and threats. Strengths and weaknesses are the internal factors. Opportunities and threats are the external factors. The 4 factors help to evaluate the fit between internal resources and capabilities of the company and external possibilities and threats.

Internal factors are the elements which the company has control over. This includes resources, operating system, people and culture. Firms have very little power over external factors. SWOT gauges the fit between internal and external factors.

Generally, you should conduct SWOT to find answers to the following questions:

  • What is your business’ strongest asset?
  • What can you improve?
  • What trends do you foresee? What changes can present exciting opportunities?
  • What obstacles do you face?

SWOT is undeniably an effective tool. Some believe that the use of this analysis has decreased in many departments. However, reports suggest that SWOT is still widely used in almost every major organization. It is normally just used as a starting point as it helps to figure out where the company stands. You must understand that SWOT results change with time.

A SWOT conducted right now would be obsolete after 2 months. It requires you to work actively. You have to take care of the weaknesses. Take full advantage of theopportunities as soon as identify them.

The aim with SWOT is to reduce weaknesses and exploit the opportunities. Remember to make contingency plans to minimize threats.

SWOT is a valuable tool. But, it is not enough to get a complete overview of a business situation.  The analysis is a great start to making big changes. You can evaluate your business’s overall direction.  Teams must immediately focus on weaknesses and opportunities.

You should set action plans and agendas. Also arrange meetings and outline action points.  SWOT will not help if you do not make changes based on it. Leading companies practise action-based analysis. Framework analysis, action plans and action points are all part of it.

SWOT’s contribution to the management team is constantly celebrated. Recently, people are questioning whether it still helps branding and marketing. The answer is yes. SWOT is not only helpful but essential for the marketing department.