At some point, you should perform a current state analysis of your startup. Before you can determine where you want to go, you must understand where you are now. Doing a current state analysis involves following processes that will help you to identify your startup’s baseline. The current state analysis methodology you choose will depend on the information you have and what you need to determine. However, you can break down a current state analysis into exploring who you are as a business, defining your message, and determining what you are doing to get business.
Let’s dive into performing a current state analysis of your startup.
- To define who you are as a business, describe what you do, who you do it for, what makes you better, and why it matters to customers
- To define your message, describe your brand, your brand promise, and what you want your brand to do for you
- To define what you do to get business, describe how you find new customers, keep current customers, your position in the market, and how you promote your business
Who Are You as a Business?
Begin your current state analysis with defining who you are as a business. If you cannot clearly and concisely describe what you do, you will have difficulty selling your products or services and convincing prospects to become customers.
What Do You Do?
- What products do you manufacture or sell, or what services do you provide?
- What problems are you trying to solve?
- What goals do you help clients achieve?
- How would you describe your business to an investor?
Who Do You Do It For?
- Who are your ideal clients?
- What industry or market do you serve?
- Who uses your products or services?
- Who uses your competitors’ products or services?
What Makes You Better?
- Why is your product or service better than your competitors’ offerings?
- What makes your offer unique?
- What feature or benefit stands out from the rest?
- What metric do you use to determine that your product or service is better?
Why Does It Matter to Customers?
- Why would a customer choose your product or service over a competitor’s offering?
- What benefit will a customer receive from changing from their current product or service to yours?
- How will a customer save or make money using your product or service?
- Why should the customer care about a specific benefit of using your product or service?
What Is Your Message?
A current state analysis involves defining your message, which is central to your brand identity. Your brand identity will form the foundation for all of your marketing. It is the face of your business and how your audience perceives you.
How Do You Describe Your Brand?
- What five words would you use to describe your brand?
- What image do you associate with your brand?
- What emotions do you associate with your brand?
- What does your brand mean to you?
What Is Your Brand Promise?
- What is your mission?
- What is your vision?
- What is your tagline?
What Do You Want Your Brand to Do for You?
- What is the main goal for your brand?
- What benefits do you want to receive from your brand?
- How do you want your target audience to feel about your brand?
- Why did you create this brand?
How Do You Get Business?
A current state analysis should describe how you get customers for your startup. Without a steady flow of leads, prospects, and customers, you have no business. Understanding your sales and marketing processes will help you to determine what works and what doesn’t in attracting leads and making sales.
How Do You Find New Customers?
- What are your main sources of leads and customers?
- How are you attracting leads to your business?
- What are the steps in your sales process?
- What is your attraction rate?
How Do You Keep Your Current Customers?
- What do you do to retain current customers?
- What happens after a customer makes a purchase?
- What do you do to encourage repeat business?
- What is your retention rate?
Where Are You Positioned in the Market?
- How many competitors do you have in your niche or market?
- What percentage of the market have you captured or do you sell to?
- How do you rank against competitors in your product or service categories?
- How do you plan to increase your market share?
How Do You Promote Your Business?
- How are you marketing your products or services?
- What media are you using to market your products or services?
- How are you tracking your marketing efforts?
- What steps and processes make up your marketing funnel?
Doing a Current State Analysis of Your Startup
The current state analysis methodology you choose is less important than actually performing a current state analysis of your business. Your goals should be to determine where you are today before determining where you want to go tomorrow.
Find the right answers by starting with the right questions. Get started with the Strategic Roadmap Current State Discovery.