- Event Strategy
SWOT Analysis for Events 2023
SWOT analyses are part of the basics of business administration and are taught at universities and schools all over the world. But how much is behind the theoretical concept and how does it help you plan your next event?
We took a closer look at the theory and give some practical tips for SWOT analysis in event management. You can also download your own SWOT analysis template and white paper.
What is a SWOT Analysis?
The SWOT analysis is a popular method for situation analysis and is often used especially in the fields of marketing, management and also in leadership development. But it can also be useful in assessing the success of your event.
Fundamental to the SWOT analysis is a valid assessment of strengths, weaknesses, threats and opportunities. Based on this assessment, the status quo can be evaluated and strategies and future perspectives can be considered and evaluated.
The name, SWOT, can be derived from these four categories:
These categories are presented in a table, the so-called SWOT matrix. Different factors can be ranked here based on their importance. Further down in this blog article, we have prepared some suggestions for the SWOT analysis for you and your event.
SWOT Analysis in Events
SWOT helps you analyse the success of current, past, and upcoming events. With the SWOT analysis, you not only identify the strengths, weaknesses, opportunities and threats of your project, but also divide the factors into internal and external. This facilitates the assessment for the following project. You can't change most of the external factors of your event, such as the weather. But you can make sure that you are well-prepared for all circumstances. Important hint for your SWOT analysis: Stay realistic. No whitewashing, no doom and gloom.
You should always conduct an initial SWOT analysis before your event takes place. This way you can identify weaknesses as well as opportunities and adapt your strategy accordingly, which makes the process more efficient and multiplies the potential event success.
But what does a SWOT analysis for events look like? We have prepared a template for your event management and give you an inspiration with which factors you could fill it.
Free SWOT Analysis White Paper + Template
SWOT analysis for your event can be tedious, but with the right template and whitepaper, you'll be well equipped. Download the free one for your event here.
Internal and External Factors for the SWOT Analysis of Your Event
SWOT analysis divides not only into the 4 factors of Strength, Weakness and Opportunities and Threats, but also into External and Internal factors.
You should start by dividing into external factors and internal factors.
Internal factors of the SWOT analysis include individual strengths and weaknesses of your event and project team: personnel, image, motivation, leadership qualities etc. These factors are very individual and can be different for different events. They should therefore always be developed individually. A SWOT analysis can also be useful for a competing event concept. If you happen to focus on a field where your competitor is strong, but you are weak, this will be noticed, and you can adjust your strategy.
External factors in the SWOT analysis include, for example, trends, political changes or legal circumstances. At the latest, since the Covid pandemic and the Infection Protection Act, everyone is aware of the scope that external factors can also have for the success of their own event.
For your inspiration, we have summarized some factors for your weaknesses and strengths and risk and opportunity analysis:
Internal & external factors of a SWOT analysis
Internal Factors for SWOT Analyses at Events
Motivation of the team
Relationship to partners
Relationship to investors
Good network of speakers and service providers
Efficiency of operations
Loyalty of guests
External Factors for SWOT Analyses at Events
Changed legal situation
Reception by guests
What Does the SWOT Analysis of My Event Tell Me?
Your SWOT table is filled in, but what does the SWOT matrix tell you now? How does a table affect the success of your event?
Generally speaking, there are 4 strategies that you can derive from this table.
Promote - the SO strategy (strength - opportunities)
SWOT analyses are part of the small basics of business administration and are taught at universities and schools all over the world. But is this just a theoretical concept and how does it help when planning your next event? We at Sweap have taken a closer look at the theory and give some practical tips for SWOT analyses in event management.
In the best case scenario, this area is huge at your event: this is where your strengths meet your opportunities. Here, you can leverage your team's skills to gain an advantage. Contrast your strengths with your opportunities and try to "match" the two - this way you can identify connection points and build on your advantages.
Neutralize - the ST strategy (strength - threats)
You can use your strengths to mitigate and avoid risks. Identified risks can be prevented by your own skills and planning - this is called neutralization strategies.
Catch up - the WO-strategy (weaknesses - opportunities)
Nobody can do everything. There can also be certain weaknesses in a team, for example due to a lack of personnel in one area. But those who have identified weaknesses can work on them specifically. Strengths can be transformed into weaknesses through these transformation strategies. This strategy is particularly important if you find the processes that you can improve, especially in an area where your competitor is strong.
Avoidance - The WT strategy (weaknesses - threats)
Ideally, this area of your matrix should be very small, because it poses a threat to the success of your event. If you can't avoid this area increasing, it's important to keep the damage as small as possible: Work on your weaknesses while trying to keep the possible damage as small as possible.
Examples of SWOT Analysis for Events
Here are a few examples of how this tool might be used to assess an event:
A music festival might conduct a SWOT analysis to identify its strengths (e.g., a popular lineup of artists, a scenic location), weaknesses (e.g., limited parking, a history of inclement weather), opportunities (e.g., potential sponsorships, new revenue streams), and threats (e.g., competition from other festivals, public safety concerns).
The SWOT analysis could also be used to find out which artist would be the most popular here.
A political campaign might use a SWOT analysis to assess its chances of success by looking at factors such as its strong points (e.g., a well-known candidate, a strong ground game), weaknesses (e.g., a lack of funding, low approval ratings), opportunities (e.g., favorable demographics, a divided opposition), and threats (e.g., negative media coverage, voter apathy).
A charity organization might conduct a SWOT analysis to evaluate a fundraising event it is planning. This analysis might reveal that the event has strengths such as a compelling cause and a strong network of donors, but weaknesses such as a lack of community awareness and a limited budget. It might also identify opportunities such as potential partnerships with local businesses and threats such as competition from other fundraisers.
Your Free SWOT Analysis White Paper + Template
The SWOT analysis for your event can be tedious, but with the right template and white paper you are well-equipped. Download the free event SWOT analysis bundle here .
5 Tips on Creating an Event SWOT Analysis
Here are five tips for creating an effective SWOT analysis for events:
Involve a diverse group of stakeholders in the analysis process. This will ensure that a wide range of perspectives and experiences are taken into account when evaluating the event.
Be specific and objective when identifying the strengths, weaknesses, opportunities, and threats of the event. Avoid making assumptions or jumping to conclusions, and focus on facts and data to support your assessments.
Prioritize the factors that are most relevant to the success of the event. Not all strengths, weaknesses, opportunities, and threats will have the same impact, so focus on the ones that are most likely to affect the event's outcome.
Develop actionable strategies to address the identified strengths, weaknesses, opportunities, and threats. A SWOT analysis is only useful if it leads to concrete steps that can improve the event's chances of success.
Regularly update the SWOT analysis as the event planning process progresses. New information and developments may arise that could impact the event, so it's important to revisit the analysis periodically to ensure it remains relevant and accurate.
Summary of the Insights
By identifying an event's strengths, organizers can focus on leveraging these advantages to make the event as successful as possible. For example, if an event has a strong social media presence, the organizers could use this to promote the event and attract more attendees.
By identifying an event's weaknesses, organizers can take steps to address these issues and mitigate their negative impact. For example, if an event has a history of poor attendance, the organizers could implement strategies to improve attendance, such as offering discounts or partnering with other organizations.
By identifying an event's opportunities, organizers can explore new ways to enhance the event and generate additional revenue. For example, if an event has the potential to attract sponsors, the organizers could reach out to potential sponsors and negotiate deals to provide additional funding and resources.
By identifying an event's threats, organizers can take steps to mitigate these risks and ensure the event goes smoothly. For example, if an event is threatened by inclement weather, the organizers could plan for contingencies such as providing covered areas or rescheduling the event.
The SWOT analysis can be a helpful tool if you need a quick status quo for your event planning strategy. It gives you a profound overview of your weaknesses and strengths and helps you make decisions. With the participation of all employees, it can strengthen internal communication.
However, SWOT analysis is not a panacea. The results should always be viewed with a certain degree of caution: Because all assessments are made on a subjective basis, the results are also easy to manipulate and, in the worst case, can be instrumentalized for a specific result. Data for competitor analysis is also always dependent on the respective insight and whether information is available at all.
But if these possible disadvantages are conscious during the process and results are classified accordingly, the SWOT analysis can also be a simple but powerful tool in event management.
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Swot analysis of event management .
Swot analysis of event management. Event management is the process of developing and organizing small and large-scale personal and corporate events. It comprises recognizing the target customer market, analyzing the company’s requirements, developing the event concept, and collaborating with the technical team before implementing the event plan.
Some of the main types of events are as follows;
- Formal parties
Various charitable organizations, celebrities, and businesses organize events for the purpose of celebrating achievements, fundraising, establishing business relationships, and labeling. However, some of the main steps of event management are as follows;
- Estimating budget
- Site selection
- Getting necessary permits
- Parking and transportation
- Hiring speaker and entertainer
- Organizing decoration
- Event security
- Coordinating with vendors and suppliers
- Developing emergency plan
- Emergency plan
Today, we’ll discuss a swot analysis of event management. It is going to focus on the internal strengths and weaknesses; external opportunities and threats to the event management. Here’s the swot analysis of event management as follows;
Strengths of Event Management
Some of the key strengths in the swot analysis of event management are as follows;
PR & Market Share
If the event management company has got excellent PR (public relations) and market share in organizing successful events; then it would help the company attract more event contracts. If you organize successful events day after day, then it would attract the attention of potential clients and allow you to establish relationships with them.
Focus on Networking
The profession of event management means organizing a series of successful events and functions of different day after day. It allows the event planners and company leadership to expand their network and establish new connections on a daily basis. In fact, the success and growth of event management companies are on establishing and strengthening connections.
Relationships with Vendors & Partners
Organizing an event requires you to have a strong relationship with suppliers, vendors, and partners in different areas of business like food, catering, cooking, serving, furniture, and equipment. The event would be successful if event planners and organizers have a strong relationship with the vendors and partners.
Pulling off a great event demands teamwork and it requires the collaboration and coordination of various partners and team members. The main reason behind the success of event management companies is their access to a professional team. If they have got expert team, it would help them to organize great events.
The profession of event management falls under the category of service industry. Successful event management companies offer excellent services to their clients. However, they are highly efficient in décor, interior and exterior designs, seating arrangements, stage, podium and everything else would be up to the mark.
Weaknesses of Event Management
Some of the main weaknesses in the swot analysis of event management are as follows;
Limited Media & Corporate Contacts
New event management planners and companies have got limited market exposure. People haven’t seen their work and attended their planned events, and they’re reluctant to hire them to conduct their events. In order to strengthen their market position, they should expand their network and market exposure.
The reason some event management companies have got limited corporate networks is that they have a poor branding strategy. They are not right about promoting and marketing their brand that would attract the attention of potential clients.
In order to organize and plan large and mega-events, you need access to a bigger network of vendors and suppliers. But the problem with the new event management companies is that they don’t have access to the mass scale resources, which limits their capability to grow and conduct big events.
Many new event management companies have got limited brand awareness in the market and a small database of clients and customers. Therefore, it is difficult for them to attract new clients and new contracts.
Shortage of Funds
The differentiating factor between a successful and failed event is the availability of funds and resources. Many new event planners have got limited resources and small budgets, limited exposure in the market; which makes it difficult for them to work on bigger projects.
Opportunities for Event Management
Some of the main available opportunities in the swot analysis of event management are as follows;
Supportive Economic Conditions
In the growing economy, people would host parties, functions, and public gathering events. Stable economic conditions create an environment of certainty; people are willing to hire event management companies to organize events for them. Resultantly, it is a win-win situation for all the stakeholders.
When it comes to organizing public mega-events, then event planners need to get permits and security protocols from the local authorities. Usually, experienced event management professionals have got good working relationships with the local authorities, and it is easy for them to get permits and security for their events.
During the wedding and holiday season, the demand for event management planners is high because people want their events to be perfect. It presents a great opportunity for all types of event management companies to offer something unique and take advantage of the opportunity to a great extent.
Threats to Event Management
Some of the potential threats in the swot analysis of event management are as follows;
Global political conflicts, inflation, and high fuel prices have increased the running material cost. When the cost of running materials is high, it would decrease the profitability of event management planning companies. It is because if they increase the service charges to some extent, then people won’t hire them.
Entry into the event management planning market is very easy, and it has made the event management industry highly competitive. It is significant for the new event planners to beware of the competition and how to deal with them.
In case of economic recession, when the purchasing power of people is low, a high interest rate, and the high unemployment rate would compel businesses and companies to host small parties without hiring any professional.
Conclusion: SWOT Analysis of Event Management
After an in-depth study of swot analysis of event management; we have realized that event planners are significant for organizing successful events. If you are learning about event management, then you should keep in mind the abovementioned factors.
Ahsan Ali Shaw is an accomplished Business Writer, Analyst, and Public Speaker. Other than that, he’s a fun loving person.
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- Expertise and Experience: Possessing experience and knowledge in event planning can give you a competitive edge and effectively execute events to the client's satisfaction.
- Versatility: Being able to plan and coordinate events for varied clients, including corporate events, social events, and private events, can open up numerous opportunities for the business.
- Flexibility: The ability to be flexible in adjusting and adapting to the constantly changing needs of clients is crucial in event planning, and can help to ensure the success of the event.
- Network of Contacts: Establishing a network of reliable vendor contacts and other professionals in the industry can help to enhance the quality of services offered to clients.
- Exceptional Customer Service: Providing a high standard of customer service, from initial consultation to post-event follow-ups, can help to build a positive reputation and generate repeat business and referrals.
- Limited capacity: Event planning requires time and resources, which limits the number of events you can plan simultaneously. This can be a significant weakness for a growing business.
- Dependency on vendors: Since events require various vendors, such as caterers, florists, and entertainment providers, any delay in their work or non-performance could harm the client's event and the planner's reputation.
- Seasonal business: Event planning is typically a seasonal business, with most events taking place in the summer and during the holiday season. This can pose a significant challenge to maintain a consistent income throughout the year.
- Intense competition: With low entry barriers, the event planning industry is highly competitive, with many aspiring planners looking to establish their business. It can be difficult to stand out in a crowded market.
- Unexpected crises: Events require multiple moving parts, and, without adequate contingency planning, unexpected crises such as inclement weather, technical issues, or emergencies, can severely impact the event's success and planner's reputation.
- Wedding Planner - Offer specialized wedding planning services to cater to the demand of engaged couples who want a perfect wedding day.
- Virtual Event Planning - With the rise of remote work and virtual events, offer services like virtual event planning, design, and coordination for clients.
- Corporate Event Planning - Plan and coordinate corporate events like product launches, conferences, and team-building activities for businesses and organizations.
- Event Marketing - Create marketing events and campaigns to promote products, services, and brands for businesses.
- Destination Event Planning - Design and plan events in exotic locations, like beaches or mountain tops, for clients who want a unique event experience.
By offering a range of event planning services, you can expand your business and cater to different client needs. Your network of vendors and professionals can also help you find new opportunities and niches in the event planning industry.
- Competition: In the event planning industry, competition is a major threat. There are other established businesses that offer similar services and have a reputation.
- Economic Risks: The economic stability of the country can impact an event planning business.
- Market Trends: The event planning industry is constantly evolving, and new trends can impact the success of an event planning business.
- Legal and Regulatory Risks: Event planning businesses face legal and regulatory risks, such as non-compliance to laws and regulations, which can result in legal woes for the business.
- Staff Management: Staff management can be difficult in an event planning business, particularly when it comes to scheduling and ensuring adequate staffing.
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How To Perform an Event SWOT Analysis
As an event planner, you aim to coordinate and host the most successful functions possible. Every event also provides valuable learning opportunities that can help you strengthen your overall organization and improve later events. However, objectively assessing the successes and struggles of your event and company can often take time and effort. An event SWOT analysis is a powerful evaluative method that can provide fast and valuable insight.
SWOT stands for strengths, weaknesses, opportunities, and threats. This framework was first developed in the business world, but many industries and organizations now use it as a strategic planning tool. Learn how a SWOT analysis can help you evaluate and improve your events.
What Is an Event SWOT Analysis?
An event SWOT analysis is a tool that you can use to identify positive aspects of your event that you can build on. It can also detect possible issues you can remedy to help your function succeed.
This productive method can assist you with many steps of the event planning process. For example, you can use a SWOT analysis to:
- Brainstorm new solutions to issues
- Compare your business to competitors
- Discover innovative ways to coordinate your event
- Find new opportunities and areas of potential strength
- Fine-tune your plans for the event
- Identify your organization’s priorities
- Make decisions
- Maximize event potential
- Put your event in context by recognizing relevant economic, market, and social trends
- Respond to possible threats that could derail your event, like a competing function or hazardous weather
- Share your event or organization’s central project goal with employees and sponsors
- Synthesize and assess post-event data , like attendee surveys
The numerous benefits of a SWOT analysis make this framework a valuable addition to any event planner’s toolkit.
You don’t need to be a business whiz to perform a SWOT analysis for events. This method is easy and free and requires no specialized knowledge or software.
First, you can create a simple chart to organize your responses to the SWOT analysis. Here’s a basic template:
Internal factors refer to your event’s specific advantages and disadvantages and include resources and skills like:
- Attendee loyalty
- Brand attributes and reputation
- Employee capabilities
- Past successes and obstacles
- Worker productivity
External factors are positive or negative outside forces. You can create strategies to respond to or leverage these factors, but you usually can’t control them. Examples of external considerations include:
- The economy
- Industry trends
- Local demographics
- Natural disasters
- New technologies and tools
- Public transportation
- Supply chain problems
Once you’ve created your SWOT matrix and started brainstorming internal and external factors, you’re ready to identify your event’s strengths, weaknesses, opportunities, and threats. Here are helpful questions that can help you complete each step of the evaluation.
A strength includes any internal factor that functions effectively and is a key determinant in your event’s overall success. To identify your strengths, consider these questions:
- Do you have a broad and enthusiastic social media following?
- Do your workers and volunteers have specialized knowledge or valuable skills?
- Have you developed a unique brand?
- How have you taken advantage of your venue’s unique affordances, like access to public transportation, the layout, or on-site staff?
- What connections have you made with current or potential sponsors and stakeholders?
- What makes your event stand out from competitor functions?
- What valuable insights have you gained from past events that you can apply to future functions?
- Which aspects of your event do your attendees enjoy the most?
Highlighting your event’s strengths can help you expand and maintain the best features.
A weakness is any internal characteristic or process that could limit your event’s success. It can often be difficult to pinpoint specific flaws — especially if you haven’t organized a similar event before — but here are a few areas to consider:
- Do you lack sufficient financial resources to achieve your goals?
- Does your event have little or no social media presence?
- Does your team lack adequate skills and training to run your event?
- Has your brand received little recognition?
- Have you ineffectively marketed your event to your target demographic?
- Have you not created a backup plan to handle unforeseen challenges?
- Is your event management system ineffective?
- Is your team unenthusiastic and unmotivated to improve?
- What aspects of past events have left attendees dissatisfied?
- What obstacles have you encountered during past events?
Identifying your event’s weaknesses can sometimes be painful, but this exercise can help you develop a strategy to tackle each issue.
Many external factors could boost your event’s success and help you accomplish your goals in innovative new ways. Your team can brainstorm about these potential opportunities:
- Are you in a niche market?
- Can you conduct audience satisfaction analyses at the event to gather knowledge for future functions?
- Can you engage with new audiences to widen your event’s reach?
- Can you provide additional training to help your staff refine their skills?
- Can you reconnect with past attendees to increase excitement about your event and build loyalty?
- Do you have creative staff who can develop new branding ideas or design new merchandise?
- Do you have room in your budget to expand your event marketing plan ?
- Have recent events or industry trends improved the market situation in your area?
- Have you identified potential new sponsors?
- Would new technologies — such as revolutionary event management software or an easy parking mobile application — improve your event?
Finding new possibilities can help you reimagine your event and develop stronger relationships with attendees, sponsors, and staff.
Finally, it’s essential to recognize potential threats that could complicate the event planning process or prevent you from meeting your goals. These questions can help you detect external obstacles:
- Are you hosting an outdoor event that could be cancelled due to bad weather?
- Could new legislation, like laws about noise or parking, restrict your event?
- Do people view your organization negatively?
- Has your target audience shrunk?
- Have costs for supplies or venues risen?
- Have changing cultural or political trends made your event less relevant or popular?
- Is a competitor planning a similar event?
- Is the local or national economy suffering a downturn that could reduce your attendance?
You may not be able to avoid all possible threats, but you can regain control by developing a plan to cope with any developing challenges.
Why You Should Execute a SWOT Analysis While Planning Your Event
A SWOT analysis of event management is a simple process that can provide several significant benefits.
Set More Realistic Event Goals and Achieve Them
Identifying potential weaknesses and threats can help you develop more realistic event goals. For example, the SWOT analysis may reveal that you don’t have a sufficient budget to hire a highly desirable performer for your entertainment event. Based on this finding, you could hire several lesser-known performers and adjust your attendance goal.
Optimize Your Event Marketing Campaign
An event SWOT analysis can enable you to recognize marketing successes and expand these techniques to attract new demographics. One of your strengths may be a memorable social media campaign, like a series of short videos that advertise your brand to parents. You could adapt this technique to a new social media platform to reach younger audiences or create similar videos addressed to a different potential audience, like grandparents.
Similarly, identifying weaknesses can help you cross ineffective advertising techniques off your event marketing checklist .
Forecast Event Performance
The SWOT matrix can help you predict your event’s performance and adjust your plans accordingly. While completing the threats or weaknesses boxes, you may realize that a new competitor will likely reduce your event’s attendance. Based on this realization, you could choose a smaller venue and scale back staff, conserving your budget for other areas.
Identify and Predict Potential Setbacks Ahead of Event
A SWOT analysis lets you detect and prevent possible challenges before your event begins. For example, you may realize that you have an inexperienced event team with insufficient customer skills or that a thunderstorm could wreak havoc on your outdoor festival. Based on this knowledge, you can develop tactics to avoid these setbacks, like providing a staff training seminar or renting tents.
Helps With Solving Event Challenges in Real Time
Even the best event planning can’t stop all setbacks. During your event, you can use the SWOT analysis to respond to obstacles in real time by drawing on your strengths, like an employee with relevant skills or extra room in the budget for emergency supplies.
Manage Your Events Strategically and Successfully With Events.com
Conducting a SWOT analysis is a great way to develop your existing strengths, shore up your weaknesses, seek new opportunities, and respond to potential threats. This method can help you view your event from a more objective standpoint. You can even fill out your SWOT analysis with your event team, allowing you to gather feedback and ideas from staff.
Once you’ve identified areas of improvement and new opportunities, it’s time to create an event strategy to take your function to the next level. Events.com’s affordable and easy-to-use Event Management Software can help you with every step of the event planning process, from attendee registration to merchandise sales. Get in touch today to learn more about how we can take the stress out of event planning and help you achieve your event planning goals.
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You are here: Home > Event Analysis > SWOT Analysis in Event Planning
SWOT Analysis in Event Planning
- - Find out how the company promotes its products
- - How the company wants to build/enhance the image associated with its product (also known as the brand image)?
- - What is the market value and market share of the company and its products?
- - Who are the customers of the product?
- - What are the features of the product?
- - What are the advantages and disadvantages of the product in comparison to competitors' products?
All this research will later help you in making an effecting promotional campaign for your corporate event.
In SWOT Analysis:
'S' stands for Strengths 'W' stands for Weaknesses 'O' stands for Opportunities 'T' stands for Threats
It is a strategic planning tool which is used to identify and analyze the strengths, weaknesses, opportunities and threats involved in your project. SWOT analysis can also be done on your organization.
Strengths: These are the attributes of your project/organization which are helpful in achieving project's objectives. For e.g.: experienced event team, high motivation level, excellent PR, good market share etc.
Weaknesses: These are those attributes of your project/organization which are harmful in achieving project's objectives. For e.g.: social loafing, lack of funds, inexperienced event team, low energy level, lack of media and corporate contacts etc.
Opportunities: These are those external factors which are helpful in achieving the project's objectives. For e.g.: little competition, favorable economic conditions, support from the local authorities, availability of the state of the art infrastructure etc.
Threats: These are those external factors which are harmful in achieving the project's objectives. For e.g.: high competition, little or no support from local authorities, bad weather, poor infrastructure, high lab our rate, unavailability of raw material etc. It is very important that you conduct SWOT analysis before developing an event plan to develop a strategy which maximizes the potential of strengths and opportunities of your project and at the same time, minimizes the impact of the weaknesses and threats.
After conducting market, competitors, product/service research and SWOT analysis, create a report which contain details of all the research work done by you. Documentation of your research work is important, later for event evaluation. Your analysis report will also help you in getting sponsorship for your event.
The countdown is on! Get New Year’s Eve tips and ideas for a toast-worthy event.
How to Ensure Event Success with a SWOT Analysis
What is a SWOT analysis? As experienced C-suite types can attest, it’s simply an established technique for understanding a situation, whether professional or otherwise. Marketers and executives often use it to determine how to improve and strengthen their offerings and features in leadership and management programs in various industries.
The analysis breaks performance down into four categories:
Once complete, a SWOT analysis will tell you:
- How well your event is positioned to succeed
- What inherent weaknesses you have to consider
- The opportunities you’re poised to seize
- All potential threats to overcome
Events don’t exist in a vacuum. The market, timing, trends, weather, and plenty of other factors influence them. A SWOT analysis helps you put your event in context and assess its chances of success.
Table of contents
List the strengths of your event, be honest about your event’s weaknesses, outline potential opportunities, confront event threats, put your swot into practice.
Your first task is to consider what’s going right with your events. What do guests, vendors, and sponsors respond most to? Look at all aspects of your event: the planning and organizing stages, the event itself, and the post-event resolution.
Here are some ways to describe the strength or potential of your event:
- A new idea, which could prove groundbreaking or attract particular interest
- An experienced, motivated team with a record of success and the resources they need to achieve it
- An existing social media following that will serve as a powerful marketing platform
- A financial plan indicating potential for healthy revenue and substantial profit
Sell yourself with a bold list of your strengths, even if it may seem like a minor or secondary part of your event. Even the ability to maintain strong relationships can be an important part of any improvement strategy, so be as thorough as you can.
It’s equally important to be honest about your weaknesses. Identifying where you can improve provides the foundation for more effective events and substantial growth. As with your strengths, look at all aspects of your event.
Weaknesses might include:
- Lack of funding and/or high expenses for things including outreach and venue rental, limiting marketing and capacity potential
- An event team that’s enthusiastic but inexperienced, slowing processes and missing opportunities for upgrades or savings
- Lack of technology you’ll need to run an efficient event, leading to glitches or disconnections that can disrupt the experience for event-goers
Acknowledging your weaknesses with complete transparency is part of the motivation for listing them. Stakeholders and investors must know what they’re setting themselves up to contend with.
But there’s also an opportunity to discuss how you’ll address these weaknesses. For example, you don’t have much capital, but you have a plan for approaching investors. Or your team is inexperienced, but you’re planning to enroll them in free online event-management classes .
The “opportunities” part of a SWOT analysis looks at factors in the community or market that could positively impact your event.
Examples of this include:
- There’s a significant LGBTQ+ population in your city, but no festival specifically directed toward this community — yours would be the first.
- With the revitalization of the urban waterfront scheduled to finish by June, it’s the perfect timing for a block party.
- There’s been an increase of family farms in your county, and a lot of buzz around eating local. The time is right to launch an annual farm tour that ends with a farm-to-table dinner.
Once your list of opportunities is complete and you’ve decided on a new event to launch, prepare your event planning checklist to stay on top of every detail.
Threats are possible occurrences that could disrupt your event or business in some way — including bad weather or a business risk such as supply chain breakdowns. But for every threat, there lies a resolution. By doing a SWOT analysis, you identify the threat and can prepare the solution.
- Bad weather will derail your music festival
- Another event will provide direct competition
- You won’t find enough sponsors to cover the cost
The contingency plan
- You’ve found a “rain or shine” venue where the show can go until lightning strikes. And if that happens, your PR team knows how to handle the fallout.
- You’ve got a rockstar marketing plan in place and will lock in your majority audience with early bird ticket sales.
- Your budget has some “optional” line items you can drop if the expense isn’t covered. But you also have a solid plan to approach impressive sponsors.
You can’t control every possible outcome, but being prepared can minimize the impact of unforeseen calamities.
Once you’ve aggregated all this information, use it to position your event potential. Ultimately, your SWOT should validate your event ideas and help you convince important stakeholders to support you.
Your SWOT can be a standalone exercise or part of a comprehensive business plan. Download The Event Business Plan to Launch, Grow, and Propel Your Event ebook for a step-by-step guide.
Launch, grow, and propel your event
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about the author
Brian Gabriel’s work has appeared in publications such as the Los Angeles Times and CartoonBrew.com. He has been a featured speaker on intellectual property at the FMX Conference in Stuttgart, Germany, and has written on copyright, trademark, and human rights issues, among other topics. He enjoys skiing, the movies, and taking his kids go-karting.
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