Situation Analysis – Where Are You At?
One of the bigger challenges facing any marketing trainer, like myself, is holding participants’ attention while discussing the role played by what we call “Situation Analysis”.
While carrying out a Situation Analysis should be the first step (and then regularly repeated), it can be so much more appealing for training attendees to jump straight to the exciting part that is the Marketing Mix – discussing product, price, promotion, and so on.
But it’s the Situation Analysis stage that should direct us along the path of the Marketing Process towards developing a marketing plan. This first step is where we learn about and evaluate political, economic, social, technological, legal and environmental information that might impact upon our plans. Essentially, it’s a critical review of our current business situation. We need to be able to identify internal and external forces that may influence the performance of our business and what strategies we might pursue. We equally need to assess our current and future strengths, weaknesses, opportunities, and strengths, aka carry out a SWOT Analysis.
A Situation Analysis could unearth issues like legislative change coming down the tracks that might provide us with great opportunities or, perhaps, curtail revenue generation from some existing services. We can devote time to investigating recent trends and what might happen next. Perhaps we can spot possible future products and services that we could offer to the market that might just give us a head-start on competitors.
Situation Analysis – What’s Involved
Really, the Situation Analysis is all about looking at both the micro- and macro-environments that impact upon or potentially could impact upon our business. So, we might consider looking at issues under the following headings, while carrying out a Situation Analysis :
Company – What we’ve got internally and what not (resources).
Customers – Which type of customers we’ve got and which not. What other market segments exist?
Collaboration – The value we attribute to our suppliers, partners, bankers, etc.
Competitors – What they’re up to, good at, not so good at, etc.
Context – The environment in which we are trying to do business – legal, technological, etc.
All critical stuff.