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The "telescopic observations" framework: an attainable strategic tool

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Purpose ‐ Proposes a radical alternative to SWOT analysis. Without rejecting the value of that venerable framework, it re-focuses it in such a way as to enhance intelligence gathering and improve strategic marketing planning in practice. Design/methodology/approach ‐ After a thorough review of the relevant literature and a balanced critique of the SWOT framework, a composite "telescopic observations strategic framework" is built step-by-step by integrating available conceptual frameworks and models in new relationships. Findings ‐ The new framework is described, explained, and illustrated by a hypothetical application. It is noted that it has been applied in real-world practice since its initial formulation in 1999 and throughout its subsequent continuous development. Practical implications ‐ The authors believe that their framework can generate a more comprehensive output and a better focussed strategic direction than other available tools in the field, but do not claim it as a once-only panacea. Users are enjoined to commit to a dynamic yet structured programme of continuous situational monitoring, organisational learning, and strategy reformulation, at regular intervals. Thereby, the new framework will double as a performance measurement and control instrument. Originality/value ‐ This paper offers an entirely original proposal for general and specific marketing strategy formulation to practising intelligence gatherers and planners and their academic advisors.
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Keywords: Marketing planning; SWOT analysis; Strategic planning

Document Type: Research Article

Publication date: March 1, 2005

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