The main environments investigated in the Situation Analysis are market, industry and firm. However, the Situation Analysis also considers relevant issues and trends in the macro environment. A brief overview of these environments follows.
The Situation Analysis sets out the facts that are the bases for all future analyses in subsequent sections. That is, with the exception of any primary research, all data reported in subsequent sections of the Marketing Plan should be traceable to the Situation Analysis, including current financial performance.
Develop a working understanding of the customer or user. Use Business Source Premier for a SWOT analysis, industry profiles, market research reports or product reviews.
Internal Analsyis of the Firm: Who You Are... Who You Are Not
Consider your firm's past performance and the reasons for those outcomes. Then analyze your firm as if we were a competitor.
Many firms have failed or not performed as we expected by overlooking trends in their macro environments. To avoid this fate, look at those factors that Porter identifies related to industries. For example: Changes in long-term growth rates; Key buyer segments; Costs and efficiencies; Relevant government regulations; Rates at which proprietary knowledge is diffusing. You also want to consider trends related to markets such as changes in: Cultural or Demographic factors; Social or Lifestyle factors; Economic issues; Legal or Political concerns; Physical environment.
Macro Environment - Trends
Questions to Consider
Start with LexisNexis Academic to create a basic Industry Analysis from a Financial or Market Segmentation view.
Once you have the financial pieces:
Then you can start to compare companies or analyze industries by: