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Creative Shop Talk with Wendy Batten

Mar 6, 2023

 Show Notes 

They say success is 80% mindset, but what happens when factors outside of your control (in this episode we will talk specifically about competition) leave you feeling defeated?  How can you get your mindset back to good? In this episode, I’m going to talk you through how performing a SWOT Test on your brand and business can help you reframe your mindset and leverage competition to improve your business.


SWOT stands for Strengths, Weaknesses, Opportunities, and Threats. Doing this exercise will really help you brainstorm a bigger picture and overview of what is really going on in your business and where to focus your efforts.


Competition isn’t a Bad Thing

  • Forces you to stay fresh in your business

  • Brings more visibility to your shop and can actually funnel customers right to you

  • Gives you a chance to focus on what you do well and what makes you and your brand unique (your strengths) and improve upon the things you don’t do so well (your weaknesses)


Getting Your Mindset Right


1. Ask yourself these questions when performing a SWOT Test on your business.

  • Strengths - What is your unique selling point? What do you do better than anyone else? What do your customers love about your shop that is unique to you? What does your community say you are the “go-to” for? Focus specifically on the strengths of your brand.

  • Weaknesses - What are some things you struggle with? Where are the gaps in your skillset? What things might hinder your success? Where can you spend time ensuring your brand is strong and well-known? Are there aspects of your business where you are just “winging it?”

  • Opportunities - What external factors can help your business grow? What changes would your customers like to see? What additional revenue streams can be added? What emerging technology can you leverage? 

  • Threats - What external factors can harm our business? Are there economic or social issues that can harm your business? What other risks/challenges do you face? When you assess threats, be sure to evaluate the truth in the things you are telling yourself.


2. Perform the SWOT Test on your competitor’s business.

Doing this will help you focus on reality versus the reality you’ve created in your mind. Don’t dwell on this step - it is meant just to give you a clear picture of what is actually happening.


3. Make changes to your business based on the results of the test you performed on YOUR business.

Push the gas on your strengths. Find a way to level up your weaknesses. Remember that by focusing on your weaknesses they become strengths. What opportunities did you identify that you can seize? How can you leverage your marketing plan, your community, and branding so that your competition feels like less of a threat? Focus specifically on the things YOU have control over. 

If you are looking for additional support and someone to bounce ideas off of, my Retailers’ Inner Circle is a great resource. Not only will you have access to me and the bright minds of over 100 fellow creative retailers, but you will also have access to my signature course, Retail Made Simple, and countless masterclasses that will help you level up every aspect of your retail business.


Full show notes here