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COMSTRAT 383 - Spring 2016 Syllabus

COMSTRAT 383  – Creative Media Strategies & Techniques (3 CREDITS) Instructor:  Brett Atwood                                Office...

Preparing your Strategic Plan Part 2: Competitive Analysis & SWOT Analysis

Many students are already familiar with the concept of a  Competitive Analysis and SWOT analysis.

As you may already know, you can use both of these to help identify where your client's product fits within the overall marketplace. By developing both of these documents, you will help focus the approach used in planning your advertising and/or PR campaigns.


A competitive analysis involves a simple exploration of your competitors in the product category or niche that you are aiming to develop a product and campaign for.

Check out this template that can help you get started:


In addition to understanding your competition, you should do an analysis of the key attributes and value propositions offered by your client. A SWOT analysis can help you get a clearer understanding of your client by documenting the:
  • Strengths
  • Weaknesses
  • Opportunities
  • Threats
To do a proper SWOT analysis, you will need to really consider what the key value propositions are in relation to the overall existing marketplace. This is why both the SWOT analysis and competitive analysis are important as a starting point to your strategic plan. You need to KNOW your brand and the larger product category before subsequent work can begin.

Here is a worksheet that you can use to help guide your SWOT analysis:
Looking for examples? Marketingteacher.com has great examples of several brands, including:

Your Assignment:

As we begin our semester campaign case study project, please work with your client to identify the focus and positioning of your campaign and where it fits into the competitive landscape. Use this information to create a competitive analysis and a SWOT analysis. Both of these documents will be included within an overall Strategic Plan that will be a key part of your semester portfolio.

This research will be used to help shape and inform future branding and messaging elements, including press releases and other PR campaign elements.