image of tausif akram By: Amby
19 Aug 2014

A SWOT Analysis Cheat Sheet

Everyone has their own way of putting together a SWOT Analysis. Some invest a large amount of resources and use a formula-based approach to calculate the overall position of their company, while others throw together the information based on where they stand now.

For whatever purpose you might need a SWOT Analysis, this Cheat Sheet is best to use by those who probably didn’t know what SWOT actually means until some service provider asked for one, and now you have to throw it together.

What the %$#& is a SWOT Analysis anyways?

A SWOT Analysis outlines 4 key elements of your business. They can be laid out in a quadrant, because 2 elements are positive, 2 are negative, 2 are internal/within your control and 2 are external/out of your control.

Those elements are your Strengths (positive, internal), Weaknesses (negative, internal) Opportunities (positive, external) and Threats (negative, external.)

So if you choose to use the quadrant layout, it should look something like the table below. However, you can lay out the information however you feel most comfortable.

Use the following cheat sheet to answer questions and the SWOT Analysis is a piece of cake!

 

Positive

Negative

 

Internal

Strengths

  • What do you do well?
  • What unique resources can you draw from?
  • What do others see as your strengths?

Weaknesses

  • What could you improve?
  • Where do you have fewer resources than others?
  • What are others likely to see as weaknesses?

 

External

Opportunities

  • What opportunities are open to you?
  • What trends could you take advantage of?
  • How can you turn your strengths into opportunities?

Threats

  • What threats could harm your brand?
  • What is your competition doing?
  • What threats do your weaknesses expose you to?

Adding to your SWOT Analysis

This worksheet can—and often does—lead to a document that truly outlines the overview of your business, and so the following information can also be added:

  • What other options does your audience have? (This is where you list out your most direct competitors.)
  • What makes you different? (This is where you describe your advantages, your disadvantages, and how you will set yourself apart from this competitor.)
  • Who will love your brand? (This is where you describe your core audience as specifically as possible. It’s better to be one person’s shot of whiskey than to try and be everyone’s cup of tea!)

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