SWOT Analysis Value
When helping a client with a new business model in pre-launch mode, we requested to view their SWOT analysis. The founders admitted to not having completed one. When we asked, they replied they hadn’t seen the value in creating one. We recommended performing a SWOT analysis immediately to further assess the current business model. The SWOT analysis results would also provide additional support for lending and finance purposes.
The strategic exercises allowed the founders to view things more objectively. After years of living their passion and watching their dream materialize, founders of any company fall under the common trap of looking at things with blinders. Ultimately, as with any SWOT analysis, the exercise enabled us to identify hidden factors. These discoveries opened communication and provided objective views on important issues. As a result, we were able to we were able to adapt and make the necessary recommendations and changes. A SWOT analysis when performed without bias helps enables better positioning in the market.
One of the neatest benefits of performing a SWOT analysis is the objectivity in which known threats and weaknesses are presented in a non-threatening manner.
The SWOT analysis:
- Provided a snapshot of where the business model was in its current state
- Allowed executives to objectively view areas of weaknesses & threats
- Enabled us to create solutions and strategies to address the threats & weaknesses
Time is one of the biggest challenges all businesses face. There never seems to be enough of it. Yet not taking the time to do something on a strategic level, while it may seem like a waste of time initially, will typically be a valuable use of time in the long run. Sometimes, as in the case of performing a SWOT analysis, it may save resources (human or financial), or save the business from failing, stalling, or under performing. In life and business, timing is everything. If one aspect of your business or marketing plan is off, the entire effort could fail. A SWOT analysis when done properly provides essential information which enables critical adjustments for success.
In this particular instance, the original financier died suddenly and the company was faced with securing new funding and needed to start at the beginning with the effort. After a month of being unable to secure additional funding, we decided to get involved in this crucial effort. We were initially hired to perform marketing activities related to the launch of the business. Until this catastrophic point, we were not involved in creating investor relation documentation.
How The Word Tailor Helped
After a month of unsuccessfully being able to secure new funding, we stepped up and jumped right in to aid in the funding effort. We reviewed existing documentation and quickly discovered that it was not at the level needed. The content, visual appeal, or presentation to the intended audience all needed work.
In our preparation, we discovered a number of strategic documents were not available that are normally included as part of a traditional business plan. Initially, the clients didn’t see the value in putting in the time to perform a SWOT analysis. They were feeling the pressure to focus on fundraising. Yet, they didn’t understand the value in the SWOT analysis and how it played into the big picture. Since investors want to see the viability of a business and its positioning in the marketplace before they put money into anything, it is crucial. We presented the reasons why a SWOT analysis was not only helpful but a critical tool. The tool satisfies a need for potential investors and provides critical business information for a successful launch.
Results, Return on Investment, and Future Plans
Performing the SWOT analysis provided insightful information that we will use to bolster the positioning when we launch. The SWOT analysis also provided critical support for potential investors as they review the material and go through the investment vetting process. Without revealing any trade secrets, here are a few highlights from the exercise:
- We elevated the existing investor documentation to include a more comprehensive, higher-level delivery of materials
- Founders were able to objectively see things they were previously unable and could possibly jeopardize the success of the launch
- We identified internal weaknesses & were able to discuss without bias or emotion and tailor solutions to address
- The documentation enabled discussions with numerous potential investors
- Securing funding now from investors
The next step will be to incorporate the discoveries of the SWOT analysis. Then we will implement the necessary strategies for success after identifying the potential pitfalls.