What If Analysis

What If Analysis

What If Analysis Jonathan Poland

What-if analysis is the process of considering and evaluating hypothetical outcomes. It is a common technique used in early stage strategy and planning, and has many specialized applications in fields such as marketing and risk management. By exploring different potential scenarios and outcomes, organizations can make more informed decisions and prepare for a wide range of potential outcomes. Examples of what-if analysis include simulating the effects of different marketing strategies, forecasting the potential risks of a new business venture, and evaluating the potential impacts of different policy decisions.

Data Analysis
What-if analysis is a common data analysis technique that involves exploring the potential impact of different hypothetical values. This can be a useful tool for making informed decisions and planning for potential outcomes. Many spreadsheet software programs have built-in features to facilitate what-if analysis, and it is good practice to capture and document the results of these analyses as an artifact. By capturing and reviewing the results of what-if analyses, organizations can gain valuable insights and better prepare for a wide range of potential scenarios.

Goal Seek
Goal seek is a feature of many spreadsheet programs that allows users to work backwards to determine what input value would produce a desired result. This can be useful for solving complex problems or making informed decisions. For example, using goal seek, you could determine what conversion rate would be needed to achieve $10,000,000 in revenue for a given number of visitors and unit cost. It should be noted, that planning backwards from your end-goal is a classic mistake of strategy and planning whereby you target numbers that fit your goals as opposed to those that are realistic.

Scenario Analysis
Scenario analysis is the process of modeling and evaluating potential future outcomes. This typically involves brainstorming and reverse brainstorming to generate a range of potential scenarios, followed by estimates of their probability and potential impact. For example, a safety risk analysis on a construction site might involve considering the likelihood and potential consequences of different types of accidents or incidents.

Business Experiments
While what-if data analysis often involves working with hypothetical numbers, a more concrete approach is to conduct experiments in the real world to generate concrete data. For example, an organization might test different marketing offers to determine which ones have the highest conversion rates. By conducting experiments and gathering real-world data, organizations can gain a more accurate understanding of the potential impacts of their decisions and actions. This can help inform future decision-making and improve overall performance.

Learn More
Ai Websites (Q3 2023) Jonathan Poland

Ai Websites (Q3 2023)

A simple resource dump of Ai websites we found during Q3 2023. Human AI Ethical, transparent, and beneficial AI development…

Channel Pricing Jonathan Poland

Channel Pricing

Channel pricing refers to the practice of setting different prices for a product or service depending on the sales channel…

Risk Management Jonathan Poland

Risk Management

Risk management is the process of identifying, assessing, and prioritizing risks in order to minimize their potential impact on an…

Types of Process Jonathan Poland

Types of Process

A process is a systematic, controlled, and repeatable way of working that is used to achieve specific goals or outcomes.…

Marketing Message Jonathan Poland

Marketing Message

A marketing message refers to any media or communication that is intended to persuade or influence customers. Marketing messages can…

Recruiting Jonathan Poland


Recruiting refers to the process of attracting, screening, and selecting qualified candidates for employment. This process is essential for any…

Due Diligence Jonathan Poland

Due Diligence

Due diligence refers to the level of investigation, care, and judgement that is appropriate and expected in a given situation.…

Risk Response Jonathan Poland

Risk Response

Risk response is the process of addressing identified risks in order to control or mitigate their impact. It is an…

Brand Risk Jonathan Poland

Brand Risk

Brand risk refers to the potential for a brand to lose value or for a new brand to fail in…

Content Database

Micromarketing Jonathan Poland


Micromarketing is a marketing strategy that involves targeting a small, highly specific group of customers with tailored products, prices, and…

Corrective Action Plan Jonathan Poland

Corrective Action Plan

A corrective action plan is a process designed to identify and address problems or issues within an organization. It involves…

Canadian Natural Resources Jonathan Poland

Canadian Natural Resources

Canadian Natural Resources (CNQ) is engaged in the acquisition, exploration, development, production, marketing, and sale of crude oil, natural gas,…

Test Marketing Jonathan Poland

Test Marketing

Test marketing involves testing different marketing strategies or variations on customers in order to gather data and evaluate their effectiveness.…

Production Management Jonathan Poland

Production Management

Production management is the process of planning, organizing, and controlling the production of goods or services. It involves coordinating the…

What is Fandom? Jonathan Poland

What is Fandom?

Fandom refers to the subculture that develops around particular popular culture series or formats, such as films, television shows, characters,…

Customer is Always Right Jonathan Poland

Customer is Always Right

The principle that “the customer is always right” is a widely used guideline in the business world to guide customer…

Conceptual Framework Jonathan Poland

Conceptual Framework

A conceptual framework is a theoretical structure that represents and organizes a set of concepts and ideas. It is used…

Rites of Passage Jonathan Poland

Rites of Passage

A rite of passage is a ceremony or event that marks an important transition or milestone in a person’s life.…