Whether you are starting a new project on the Internet, or if you already have one that is not going well enough, you should know what a SWOT analysis (or SWOT) is and what it could help you with your own project.
But this technique will not only help you professionally, but it can also boost you in the personal sphere of your work, in order to improve your relationships with clients, suppliers or partners.
In short, by putting into practice this analysis of the SWOT matrix that I propose today, you will be able to cover all those factors that prevent you from increasing the profitability of your actions.
And, as we usually do on this blog every time we incorporate a new term, I will begin by revealing its definition:
what is a swot analysis? SWOT analysis matrix?
The SWOT Analysis or SWOT matrix is a tool that allows us to obtain a comprehensive perspective (both internal and external) of the business at a specific moment and that helps us to know more exactly what the current situation is and what areas of improvement we have with respect to the future.
This technique is so widespread today that it is considered the “Our Father” in any business strategy that seeks to be competitive.
In other words, we can say that it is a “snapshot” of the current state of the company, through which we outline a deep and sincere analysis, which unequivocally leads us to improvement.
You should know that this concept has other names since in English it means “SWOT analysis” or ” SWOT Matrix” (Strengths, Weaknesses, Opportunities, Threats).
Also, in blogs or publications made by Latin Americans, you can also see it as;
SWOT or SWOT analysis
This analysis is composed of 4 triggers:
And, in case you hadn’t noticed yet, their initials are the ones that give name to said matrix.
What do each of the 4 variables in the SWOT matrix mean?
It is likely that, once I have introduced you to the protagonists that give this analysis its name, you are wondering the meaning and usefulness of each one of them:
Detecting the weak points of our project, analyzing and strengthening them can turn the most local and small businesses into great “empires”.
Therefore, we must locate internally all those points to improve in terms of marketing, production, finance and organization, among other areas.
On the contrary, once the weaknesses of our company or project have been identified, we must be clear about those strengths that can drive us, from minute one, to success in our sector.
To clarify the path a bit, these are usually all those skills that you started with and that inspired you to start that project.
As you may be imagining, you will have to enhance these strengths as much as possible, so that you can become a benchmark in those “points that make you strong”.
Already thoroughly involved in all the external factors that affect our success or failure, the threats that we have around us are something to take into account.
Look at handicaps such as the existing competition in your own market niche and the other variables of the environment where you are.
Surely if you detect and control them, you will already have a lot of cattle.
In the same way, based on all the external agents that you may find on your way, being clear about the opportunities and, above all, taking advantage of them, will mark a large part of your success or failure.
These can be given by the market trends or niche where you operate, the digital transformation that you carry out and, of course, by the natural talent that you and your team have.
How to carry out a professional SWOT analysis step by step? How to use a SWOT analysis to formulate strategies
One of the great advantages of the SWOT or SWOT matrix analysis is its great applicability and a fantastic tool to know what steps to take when moving forward with your company.
In addition, it will be the trigger for many of the actions that you must take within your current marketing plan.
Taking this into account, here are some of the tips you can follow to implement this business analysis tool in your business:
1. Describe your current situation in detail
As in any process, to define where we want to go, we must put “on the table” the current situation that the business is going through, whether it is more or less favorable.
We must weigh within our SWOT what strategies to carry out in the future, based on the state of the market in which we operate, the human talent of our company and our limitations.
2. Analyze everything in depth
At the point where the variables have been revealed, we must delve into them, trying to find opportunities in the market that will lead us to success.
This is where the so-called CAME method or analysis comes into play, through which we pursue:
- Correct weaknesses.
- Confront the threats.
- Keep the strengths.
- Exploit the opportunities.
This parallel analysis, together with the first conclusions that we draw from our SWOT matrix, will determine the most urgent actions in the short term.
3. Prioritize actions
At this point, it is time to act based on what we consider to be the most important and beneficial for the organization in the short term.
There will be some aspects and actions within our SWOT analysis that, although we should not neglect them, we must leave them somewhat “parked” and put them into practice in a later phase of the business.
This criterion is commonly called “prioritized SWOT “, where actions to be implemented within a maximum period of 6 months are included.
4) Restrict weaknesses and threats as much as possible
As I showed you before, weaknesses and threats are two of the main factors of a «SWOT» matrix, which we must limit as much as possible and give it special prominence within the “ecosystem” that we have on the table.
In this way, our main objective will be to turn them into strengths in the medium/long term and include them in our marketing plan.
5) Maintain (and further enhance) our strengths
In the same way, just like all those factors that try to make us weaker, we must convert them in our favor, the strengths that we have identified must be strengthened.
Whether they are communicative, strategic or related to conversions, for the mere fact that they are “strengths”, we must not stop working on them.
Types of strategies to apply based on the results of the SWOT + Example of SWOT Analysis
Taking into account that we already know what a SWOT analysis or matrix is and that we know how to recognize the different factors that intervene in it, we must take action.
This is where we must distinguish 4 types of strategies to carry out:
These are growth techniques and result from uniting strengths + opportunities, or what is the same, the 2 initially positive factors of the matrix.
if we are aware that our training offer is very powerful (in fact, we are convinced of it) and also the demand for people interested in training in Online Business rises, we will have the “license” to implement campaigns even more aggressive marketing.
All this, without abuse that can be confused with “spammer” techniques. Here we can introduce in our marketing plan actions such as:
- Increase investment in Facebook Ads.
- Viralize the courses in Facebook groups on the subject.
- Increase the investment in Google Ads.
2. Defensive Strategy
Here we will unite our strengths + threats, so that, referring to the previous example, knowing that our courses are of great quality, but the demand for students is lower, we could pivot with our actions.
Thus, the threat would be the low demand, before which we must counterattack by lowering prices a bit or, why not, investigate what other courses are most in demand (even if we have to sacrifice some of the current ones).
3. Adaptive Strategy
Here weaknesses + external opportunities would come into play and, through both, act accordingly.
In this way, imagine that we detected in eyet services that there are many complaints from students about the poor image and sound quality of our online classes (weakness).
As this is a determining factor in the learning of students who have chosen this training modality, we should change it yes or yes.
That is when we should fight back by buying the best UltraHD or 4K video camera on the market.
4. Survival Strategy
Unfortunately, we can also find weaknesses + threats coming together. That is when, at first glance, we become alarmed, fearing the worst.
Here negative internal and external factors come together respectively.
Finishing with the previous example, we can realize that all the demand of students interested in training in Digital Marketing in Barcelona is directed to another school of the competition.
And, to top it off, that school/s are increasing their number of students and even multiplying it…
That is when we must review our initial SWOT analysis from the beginning and rethink new strategies for attracting students, using info products that add value and manage to capture qualified leads.
These could be potential students who, showing them the advantages and benefits that our school can bring them, end up signing up for one of our online or face-to-face courses.
With all the keys that I have given you in this guide, I am sure that you already have the main tools to start drawing your SWOT or SWOT matrix.
Remember that these will serve you both to establish personal or professional relationships, while you do Networking or close sales with suppliers or clients, as well as to better focus your work team.