SWOT Analysis often becomes a quick group brainstorming approach with marketing students, rather than a discussion of what makes up a robust and detailed SWOT.
The other problem with SWOTs is that they are quite generic, often because students start with a “blank sheet”. To solve this problem I have set up a new website www.ideas4swot.com where there are over 500 ideas to include in a SWOT – but best of all I have built an Excel template that virtually automates the SWOT process – it is available for free download.
This means that we can get beyond the “building a generic SWOT” to actually working with a more detailed SWOT to start looking at strategic options.
Possible In-Class Activities
- Groups can develop a SWOT for a particular firm and then discuss/argue why their approach is different (or better).
- Students can develop SWOT’s for two or more direct competitors and identify WHY their marketing strategies NEED to differ.
- Students can split the SWOT into four (with a group working on each) as an overall class activities.
- Students can start with a “blank sheet” first, and then move to the SWOT template to see how more detailed information (closer to the first) can greatly assist the development of a SWOT.