Did you know that 47% of social media marketers report that the biggest challenge they face when it comes to social media marketing is coming up with strategies that support business goals?
THIS is where the handy-dandy SWOT analysis comes in to save the day! SWOT stands for Strengths-Weakness-Opportunities-Threats, and completing one of these can help you understand how exactly to utilize social media and strengthen your strategy. The SWOT framework is traditionally used to analyze the internal and external factors that help or hurt a business’s success. A SWOT analysis can help you identify key areas within your social media strategies and campaigns that require improvement or tweaking in order to be successful.
Let’s Break it Down
1.Strengths: Everyone likes knowing what they are doing right. The same is true for businesses- of course they want to highlight the things they’re doing right that are leading to successes! That being said, the strengths you are looking at will vary depending on what you determine the overall goals of your social media efforts to be. For example, a strength of one business on social media might be that they have active contributors posting and commenting that can help increase their brand awareness, while for another it may be market reach into your specific industry.
Sample questions to ask yourself as you look at your strengths: What are you doing well? What advantages or strengths does your brand have?
Sample Answer: “We have a strong brand voice and an active community that is consistently engaging with our social media content.”
2.Weakness: This part can sting a little bit because it can be hard to admit where your business may be lacking. Like with your strengths, weakness points can vary depending on your overall social media strategy and goals. Some common examples of weakness are the inability to scale or maintain a social media campaign for a business, lack of analytics tools to track and monitor results of a campaign internally, or not maintaining that effective social media presence which means your goals aren’t being met. Some larger companies have an entire part of their social media marketing team that specifically responds to comments on posts. (if you are short on time, check out our other blog post on “Help! I Have No Time for Social Media.”)
Sample questions to ask as you look at weakness: Where/What are you lacking with the content you are posting? What internal issues or factors could play a part in impacting your ability to reach your goals?
Sample answer: “We had to cut the marketing budget from last quarter and as a result have fewer employees to monitor our accounts as well as fewer resources.”
Before we go on, it’s important to realize that Strengths and Weakness are both internal factors- these are the processes and strategies that your business is using and the things you have direct control over and can make changes to in order to achieve success! The next part of the SWOT Analysis, Opportunities, and Threats are both external factors. You won’t usually have any control over them but you do have the ability to monitor them in order to alter your social media campaigns accordingly.
As We Continue
3.Opportunities: Sometimes performing your SWOT analysis on each of the individual social media channels you are using can help you identify the opportunities you are missing. For example, maybe you join Instagram to visually highlight your company rather than using a text-focused platform like Facebook. By switching to a different dominant platform, you identify an entirely new audience to target. For a business trying to expand into additional geographic markets, reach an additional target market, or simply grow, this element of the SWOT analysis can help you understand how to go about engaging and connecting with these new opportunities. You can also determine if there are opportunities for promotions, discounts or offers that you can highlight through your social media platforms.
Sample questions to ask as you look at your opportunities: What exactly is the call to action of that specific social media campaign? What are you trying to gain? Are there any companies out there we can partner with to increase awareness?
Sample answer: “We want more newsletter sign-ups in order to create new leads or brand awareness.”
4.Threats: This part of your SWOT analysis tends to focus more on external factors such as direct competitors within your industry. You’ll be able to identify if the goals you have set for your business are sustainable over time or if there are major obstacles that will be blocking your path to future success. Another threat to consider is the ever-changing social media algorithms (seriously though, it seems there is always a new way to push content out to users!).
Sample questions to ask as you look at threats: Is there a competitor going after the same audience or space with a similar campaign? What outside forces, such as the economy, could hinder your social media marketing efforts?
Sample answer: “Company XYZ has come out with a similar discount campaign on a similar product and the downturn in the economy is prompting prospective customers to search for deeper discounts on products or services.”
It’s important to keep in mind that there are no “right” or “wrong” answers to each section when you are completing your SWOT analysis! You do need to make sure that you are really thinking them through and being honest with yourself.
A couple more things to keep in mind as you complete your SWOT analysis:
- Every strength can be a potential weakness
- Every weakness can be a potential strength
- Every opportunity is also a potential threat
- Every threat can also be a potential opportunity
SWOT analyses are great because you can apply the principles to any of your other digital marketing efforts like email or SEO. By regularly doing a SWOT analysis, say, once a quarter, you can better align your social media and your social media marketing efforts as part of your larger business goals! You’ll get a better picture of where you are doing well and where your campaigns are lacking. Anything you can do to help your business set better goals and give your social media presence more of a purpose is always a good thing- a SWOT analysis does exactly that.
Think you might be ready to get started with a SWOT analysis to grow your social media presence? Our team at SocialKNX can help with that! Social Media Management and Content Creation is just one of the things we can help you do to grow your business. Contact us today and see how we can help.