Situation Analysis


Requirements/Project’s Goals

For our semester-long project, we were required to develop a Situation Analysis for a publicly traded firm or organization with a particular focus on the company’s marketing and/or communication challenges. I chose Tesla for its disruptive marketing.


While the content requirements were specific, we were given freedom to present our project in our preferred media format.  For a Situation Analysis, a print document, created in Adobe’s InDesign, may often be preferred.  Since our graduate studies are in Web Design and Online Communication (WDOC), I chose to explore a few of Google’s online products to build the presentation.  I was interested in how to communicate ideas visually and also entice the reader to remain engaged with potentially dry content including statistics and numbers.

Skills/Techniques/Programs used

While researching and analyzing Tesla’s marketing and communications data took a month, I remained intrigued by the possibility of building a presentation website with several Google products: Sites, Sheets, and Slides.  The final project includes a delightful array of visual timelines, engaging statistics, and video elements.  Granted, the content remains thick, yet the user feels a sense of ease of digestion thanks to the delivery method. The evolution of the WDOC coursework over the past 4 semesters helped me decipher Tesla’s disruptive marketing and communications strategy as well as study its competition and allowed me to create a simple, yet powerful communication tool.

Favorite Aspect of Project

I loved researching Tesla and its “anti-selling” model. The company offers us incredible mass communication lessons for how to reach an audience and potential customers by building community and focusing on the experience.  In addition, getting under the hood with GM’s Chevy brand, as a Tesla competitor, offered a new perspective on the race to the sales finish line.

What did you learn while completing this Project?

By observing Tesla and its competition, I understood Strategic Communication at a deeper level.  From the nuances of garnering re-tweets, shares, and media mentions to the larger forces of government support while combatting the auto industries tenacity to retain the status quo of the dealership model, Tesla has negotiated difficult road conditions with its eyes focused on the checkered flag.  Witnessing a revolutionary company endure and thrive thanks to mass communication strategy, remains delightful.