SWOT Analysis

Since this is a ventures course, we decided to use a business framework to evaluate current social media platforms used for professional development and tease out new opportunities in this market. SWOT allows one to easily identify an organization’s Strengths, Weaknesses, Opportunities, and Threats. After identifying factors in each of these categories for existing products in a specific market, an analyst will have a much better idea of what opportunities are available. They might target an existing platform’s weaknesses, avoid the strengths of the competition (or initiate them), or  exploit current opportunities and threats.

Source: How to Use a SWOT Analysis to Blast Your Business Out of Complacency by Alyssa Gregory.

While using the SWOT framework, it’s important to keep some key questions in mind.

Strengths

In this category of the framework you should focus on what makes the company excel at their chosen business. More importantly, this category should emphasize internal strengths for the company. If the positive aspect you are considering is external (e.g. customers really like tailored information) it is an opportunity. Key questions:

  • What do you offer better than the competition?
  • What business stream brings in the most revenue or profit?

Weaknesses

In this category of the framework you should focus on what activities the organization performs at a lower level than the competition. More importantly, this category should emphasize internal weaknesses for the company. If the negative aspect you are considering is external (e.g. customers really dislike poor customer service in general) it is a threat. Key questions:

  • Where do you lose money?
  • What does my competition do better?
  • What are customers or employees always complaining about?

Opportunities

Key questions:

  • What are the market trends?
  • What are customers asking for?
  • Are there new customer bases you can pursue, or can you expand your offering for current customers?

Weaknesses

Key questions:

  • What related service are your customers purchasing from someone else and not from you?
  • What are your competitors doing to acquire your customers, or customers similar to yours?
  • What is going on in the economy?

At the end of the day, SWOT is one of many tools, and just helps you to keep organized.

Content adapated from: How to Use a SWOT Analysis to Blast Your Business Out of Complacency by Alyssa Gregory.

 

22 comments on “SWOT Analysis
  1. evanbarr says:

    I like how you guys adapted SWOT to hang your analysis’ on. Gives a solid back-up to why/how to rate different platforms. Comprehensive, yet pointed.

  2. This is a really great idea for a framework. I’m excited to see how this plays out.

  3. dmp6 says:

    SWOT is a great means for a venture analysis. It is a comprehensive look at the product.

  4. bmehregani says:

    Using the SWOT analysis could be helpful for social media ventures that want to penetrate the public education market in a big way. A final analysis would be very interesting.

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