- Health insurance - how it works.
- 3 most common mental disorders and their manifestations
- Drug rehabilitation - how to help those around you.
- Moringa oleifera - what is the hype about?
- Measles outbreak - why?
- How much does disability pay?
- Is dyslexia a disability?
- What is community health and the role of community health care centres?
- Is AIDS treatable now?
- Is hand-foot-mouth disease (HFMD) the same as chicken pox?
- Zombie deer disease could be transferred to humans - true or false?
- Is Flakka really a Zombie Drug?
- Can anxiolytic medication also lower your blood pressure?
- How stress affects your health?
- Do you have depression (Quiz).
- Is post-party depression a real thing?
- The link between cannabidiol (CBD oil) and depression.
- Is Social Media Depression a real thing?
- Can american mothers afford to use Zulresso (brexanolone) for PPD treatment?
- Many things we know about obesity are wrong - how?
- Ultra-processed foods - how do they affect us?
- Paraphilic disorders - how to perform a self-exam?
You have a presentation to prepare and you are looking for ideas. You might have read many blog posts published on a variety of content writing services, but now you have come to the right place. I will not waste your time. Below are some unique topics you will not find anywhere else!
Below are some unusually similar question that I am often asked by my fellow health care professionals:
- How to write an article to attract more readers?
- How to get traffic to your blog through effective writing?
- How to get people to read your blog thoroughly when everyone is in a hurry? etc.
The common 'intention' behind all the above questions is that the person asking questions is willing to reach a wider audience!
If you are a physician, surgeon or any real medical professional, this blog post is for you!
Writing is not for everyone; yes, this is true.
But health article writing is not for everyone either!
I find it strange how most health article writers on the internet are not medical or health care professionals. I find it even strange that they are considered ‘experts’ in their own niches, merely due to their ability to write effectively. Equally strange is the fact that most medical professionals are reluctant to engage in health related writing. The result? A vacuum that is filled by non-professionals.
I have seen websites depicting ibuprofen as a drug that treats ‘gas in stomach’ ! Trust me, this is true. And imagine how dangerous a world we are creating with that kind of information appearing on the first page of Google search!
So, if you are a health care professional, you are more than welcome to write. You are welcome to fill the vacuum that is currently being filled by word-crafting non-professional individuals who in most cases have never ever physically examined an ill patient; let alone treat one.
Who deserves more to write on health related subjects than a real health care professional?
If you are willing to play your role, the following lines will guide you. Its easy to learn how to start writing effectively but achieving perfection is of course a long-term goal - a goal that you can achieve by repeated trials and errors.
Here are some tips for you..
In the second lesson, I talked about providing positive results to your readers through the health articles that you publish on your blog. I emphasized how important it is to provide positive results and how to make your blog popular among your readers.
In this lesson I’ll highlight some principles that can potentially ensure positive results. But before we proceed, I would like to stress the importance of understanding the nature and characteristics of an internet reader who visits your website after reading the attractive title that you provided when publishing your content. Your reader demonstrates the following:
- Your reader is always in a hurry; s/he doesn’t have the time.
- Your reader expects a “to-the-point” answer to his/her question.
- Your reader pushes the title of you blog post into his/her short-term-memory and begins comparing your blog post’s content with the title. Do they “match” or “relate” to each other?
- Your reader has a short attention-span; maybe a few seconds.
- Your reader has a lot to read NOW; there are several thousand articles that can potentially answer the question s/he is looking for.
- Your reader is ready to give you a “few seconds of time” or a “few lines of reading/listening”.
- Your reader hates distractions like “pop-ups” or “requests for sign-up” etc. (especially if they obstruct the view of content s/he is reading).
- Your reader is eager to learn anything that transforms his/her life.
- At the end, your reader expects a ‘wealth of knowledge’ for the investment s/he just made. Remember “time” is your reader’s investment.
Quite a challenging situation – right?
How do you handle it?
First thing: Calm down!
Second: Picture this:
One fine morning, after you get up and have your breakfast, you hear a knock on your door. You open the door and find a very attractive Man/Woman there, willing to meet you. The visitor tells you that one of the friends sent them to you, since you are an expert in (title of your blog post) and s/he wants to learn about it by talking to you. You let the visitor come inside; tell him/her to take a seat in your drawing room. For some unknown reason, you like the visitor and you are willing to entertain him/her in the finest way possible. So you start working to make their ‘experience’ enjoyable right from the start. What do you do?
You provide your visitor the best place to spend his/her time. You spare some time to spend with him/her and to answer the questions. You behave as an expert. You give to-the-point answers to what s/he asks. You explain things with examples. You try to be witty at times, but again within limits. When you feel that your guest is lost, you try to guide him/her back. After a few minutes of discussion, you go to your kitchen and bring something to serve your guest. While coming back you try to anticipate your guest’s next question and when you are back with your guest, you answer before s/he even asks it. Lastly, you let your guest know about the future prospects of the topic at hand. Finally, when your guest asks for permission to leave, you walk to the door with him/her and say good bye.
Your website visitor/reader is your guest; or maybe guest of honor! Why treat him or her differently?
Treat your website visitors like your guests and don’t let them leave your website dissatisfied.
How to do that? Lets see.
The following principles will help you provide Positive Results to your readers and an overall satisfying experience:
1) Always identify you audience. Writing with no audience in mind is useless. I find it helpful to know anything and everything about my target audience before I start writing. Obviously if I am writing for my fellow clinicians, I have to maintain a tone that sounds more technical and my choice of words will revolve around medical terminology. On the other hand, if I am writing for my patients, its a totally different story. So, NEVER fail to know and understand your audience, as this will influence your final written product tremendously.
2) Never choose a broad topic; instead focus on answering ‘specifics’. So, instead of writing about Sexually Transmitted Diseases in general, prefer to write about Gonorrhea. AND, instead of writing about Gonorrhea, prefer to write about ‘Gonorrhea Treatment'.
3) How long should your blog post be? My simple rule is to write detailed posts on subjects that are simple and write short posts but with simplified-concrete-information on subjects that are complicated. The problem is most writers omit the details when they encounter a simple topic, assuming things are 'already understood'; in reality, most people need details! Likewise, when writers work on complex topics, they go into useless details, most of which are incomprehensible to the readers; here again, they lose the reader. A better approach is to write only about things that are essential and easily remembered by anyone. So, make it short! By doing this, your content stands out since your reader likes it this way.
4) One topic - One blog! The temptation to share all you know is natural, but just don't do it here. Spare your 'EXTRA' knowledge for 'ANOTHER' blog post or article, with a different topic and different discussion. Trust me, your readers will be happy. Stay relevant to your topic; this is all what your reader wants!
5) The Black Hole Effect: Black holes are strange objects in outer space that have tremendous gravitational pull; so much so that even light cannot escape from their grasp. Your opening or first sentence should have similar attraction. Always start with a sentence that grabs attention and hooks your visitors. Once your visitor is sucked-in, all you need to do is maintain this condition.
6) The second sentence should explain or relate to the first one. This is meant to support the first sentence while prolonging the attraction that your first sentence generated already.
7) Leave plenty of white space between paragraphs and keep your paragraphs short.
8) Split your content by using subheadings. This makes your content easy-to-scan.
9) Discuss ONLY ONE THING in one paragraph or a subheading.
10) Don’t complicate things; instead simplify them. Use plain language. Write short sentences. Avoid complex terminology, except where it is very necessary. Twisted sentences hinder reading which directly impacts your reader retention.
11) Talk to your visitors as you talk to your real-life guests. One-2-One!
12) Somewhere in the middle of your article, take a chance to offer your visitor something for free. This is equivalent to serving a drink to your real-life guests. In your blog this could be a free e-book, or sign-up offer to a free newsletter that you publish etc.
13) Don’t waffle. In the short window of time that your reader will provide you, this is not an option.
14) Always anticipate the next question that your reader might ask; then answer it when appropriate. Never leave it unanswered as this will force the reader to leave your website in search of another.
15) Always conclude with a strong message. By doing so, you are in a position to entice your reader to take further action.
16) After you have completed your blog or article, read it once. Then answer the following question:
"what contribution has your blog/article made to the life of your reader"?
17) Add a ‘Resource Box’ at the end of article. This should contain information about the author of article and references or links to his/her other similar works.
Go To Lesson ONE
Go To Lesson TWO
A very common question that comes to the mind of new bloggers is what do people blog about? There can be a million answers to this simple question depending upon why and how you intend to get people to read your blog. But there are certain essentials that you need to know before you write your next blog post.
In the first lesson we discussed how thinking through the brain of your target audience is essential to reach them and to write health articles that become successful. What I did not mention was that the same stuff can provide you the “TOPICS” or “TITLES” about which you should write.
So, if you are planning to discuss the treatment options available for urticaria, “Hives Treatment” can be a very good topic; only you have to twist it to make it sound interesting. So, you can go like;
1) 7 way to treat your hives.
2) 5 hives treatments that actually do NOT work.
3) How my doctor treated my hives.
Now watch closely!
Example 01: When you add a number to the title of your health article, you set your reader’s brain to start counting from 01 onwards. This serves as a means of grabbing their attention for a while, which is what makes them click on your health articles.
Example 02: Writing about treatment options that DO NOT WORK is interesting for your reader because such titles give a feeling that your readers will save their time, effort and money if they go through such health articles. So once they have ruled out the ineffective treatments by reading such health articles, they can focus more on effective ones.
Example 03: Titles like “how my doctor treated my hives” are very relatable and a person who is suffering from urticaria might want to learn about others’ experience before going to see a doctor himself. Have you ever observed two patients talking about their illnesses when they are admitted to hospital wards for treatment? What do they talk about mostly? They share their experiences!
So, now you have crafted a title for your health article, but what do you write about?
It’s at this point that things become trickier!
Let me explain.
Let’s assume you are running an online charity website, which collects money from donors. To spark your donors’ interest and to maintain your relationship with them, you have two options;
OPTION 01: Send them small gifts like pens and keychains etc. to appreciate their efforts.
OPTION 02: Show them the improvements that their money is bringing to the lives of people they are supporting. This can be done through a blog post that depicts images and introductions of the deprived individuals that are being helped.
What is your donor gonna like?
Of course the 2nd option seems more suitable. But why?
Because, they are able to see the POSITIVE RESULTS of their contribution and this is a very satisfying experience.
Likewise, the person reading your health article blog post is spending time on your page. What for?
For POSITIVE RESULTS!
If your text can make a contribution that provides positive results to your reader, you have won.
But if at any point your reader feels that s/he is not getting the desired results – you have lost your reader!
You have read my article this far, WHY?
Probably, because it is ‘shaping your thoughts to become a successful health articles writer’ and this is the POSITIVE RESULT that you want to achieve by reading this content.
So, when you start writing your health articles, remember you are doing this to provide POSITIVE RESULTS to your readers. Nothing else!
Now, here comes the million dollar question!
What about the results that YOU want to achieve through your health articles blog? How can you protect you own interest? How to promote your blog? How to increase blog traffic?
The answer to these questions is multifaceted:
- First, if your health blog visitor starts reading your health articles and spends some time on it, you start getting your reward. The search engine improves your content’s ranking and as a result you start getting more visitors (obviously more potential clients).
- If your health article manages to bring back your website visitors again, chances are they remembered you – an indication that your brand is become famous. Moreover, repeat visitors are more likely to buy from you, i.e. increased conversions.
- If your content manages to convince your readers into signing-up for your newsletter, you are increasing your client base. Your future email marketing campaigns are more likely to yield your desired results.
- If you have managed to provide positive results to your readers, you are in a position to request them to click an affiliate link that you might put on the same page. In this way you can earn a commission if a sale takes place.
- A satisfied reader who gets his/her desired RESULTS is likely to share your content with others; this can increase the exposure of your health articles many folds. Again, more readers – more potential clients.
- If you have an online-store (e-commerce), you blog reader can possibly become buyer of your products or services.
So, there are numerous ways you can benefit from a blog that provides POSITIVE RESULTS to readers. Some of them are mentioned above, but sky is the limit!
But how do you write a health article or blog post that provides POSITIVE RESULTS to your readers?
For this read lesson THREE.
You need a blog post to publish on your blog and suddenly you realise the importance of learning how to write an article for this purpose. Remember, this is not your high-school research article; it is for your blog and you want to focus on how to get your blog noticed by people and search engines.
So, let’s start with our first lesson about writing health articles for your health blog. But before we start, let me ask you a simple question!
“ Why are you reading this? “
A common answer would be “I am reading this because I want to learn about writing for my health blog, which is content-hungry”.
But, I am afraid, your answer is wrong!
Whats the correct answer then?
Correct answer: The only reason you are reading this is because I have managed to cast my spell through your search engine all the way to your computer, and now you are spell-bound to read till the end of this sentence, or maybe the whole article.
Yes, this is true, read on..
By ‘spell’ I mean ‘my ability to reach my target audience’.
But how do I know you can potentially be my target audience and how did I manage to reach you? You’ll find the answer below. Just read on..
This lesson will teach you two basic things:
- Purpose of blog writing
- How do you reach your target audience?
If you have read the above lines carefully, you must have already understood the purpose of writing a blog article.
Yes, the purpose of article writing through blogs is to reach your desired audience!
1) If you are running an online charity website, you may want to reach out to your potential donors; and later convince them to donate funds.
2) If you are running a business that sells computer-security related software, your purpose of blogging might be to scare EVERY computer users, so they feel insecure. The result? They will buy your software.
3) Likewise, if you are running a health related business, your purpose of writing health articles may be to reach out to individuals who have health concerns. Later, you can sell them your products or services.
(BTW, you are my target audience because you might be a person who needs health articles to publish them on your blog / website and I am a writer who sells such health articles – both ready-made & custom-written)
Before you start writing on health related subjects, it is always a good idea to identify your niche. In health article writing your niche will refer to the subset of health writing market, which you will target through your writing. For example, you can choose to write about 'nutritional deficiency states' (niche) to become part of the greater market of 'Nutrition'.
How do you reach your target audience?
This is simple but complicated!
It is simple because all you have to do is to ‘provide answers’ to questions that your audience is asking at a given point in time.
It is complicated because you don’t have to think through your own brain; but through the brain of your target audience!
Simply put, imagine what questions are being asked by your target audience at a given point in time. Answer those questions in your health articles blog and you have reached your audience!
So, let’s say you own a business that has developed a novel medication that treats “urticaria” (a medical condition). If you intend to get in touch with your desired audience, you’ll have to answer questions like the following (in the health articles that you write for your blog):
- Pictures of hives.
- What do hives look like?
- What causes hives?
- Virus that causes hives.
- Hives treatment.
Now, watch closely!
- None of the above examples contain the word “urticaria” – why?
Because ‘urticaria’ is a medical term and very few people are familiar with this word. “Hives” on the other hand is the first word that comes to the mind of a person (your target audience) who goes to Google to find information about urticaria.
So, which one is better for your health articles? Urticaria OR Hives? You decide!
- If a person develops urticaria, what is the first thing that comes to his or her mind? The first thing is diagnosis. And how do you expect a person to diagnose himself using Google?
Answer: The person searches for pictures of urticaria (hives) and then compares them to his or her skin lesions. So a logical thing is to search for “pictures of hives”, OR, ask “what do hives look like?”.
- After diagnosis, what is the logical sequence of events going on in his or her mind?
Answer: The person scans his recent history to look for a cause that relates to his present condition. Hence, s/he might ask:
“what causes hives”
“virus that causes hives” (remember the patient is unaware of the medical causes of hives and it is quite possible that s/he thinks that perhaps a virus is the cause of hives).
- What next?
The person has decided that his or her condition is hives. Now what?
The person wants to know the treatment!
So, you write a health article with the topic “hives treatment” that contains information about the various treatments available.
This is where you introduce the novel medication that your company has developed to treat urticaria!
This is a very simple example of how you should think through the brain of your target audience. But this is perhaps the most basic concept about which you should train your mind right from the start.
End of lesson ONE.
I suggest you to read the lesson once again, make notes and then perform the following exercise.
- Suppose your company sells Tooth Brushes.
What questions do you expect your target audience to ask? 5 questions only!
GO TO LESSON TWO
Medical blogs have emerged as an important strategy in healthcare marketing and there is growing evidence to support the fact that companies that invest in intelligent blogging outperform their competitors. The dramatic increase in the number of blogs that publish health articles allows users to benefit from textual information in novel ways, while allowing blog-creators to analyze consumers’ attitudes for promotional and marketing purpose. As web accessibility increases, so does the public interest in the available content of blogs. Since health matters hold a prime position in the lives of blog readers, providing medical information through health articles is a very convenient way of aligning one’s healthcare related services/products with the readers’ expectations.
Although blogs are priceless Internet and social-media marketing tools, their creation and management is a challenging task. Since blogs help a business acquire leads and inbound traffic, investing fiscal resources and time on blog management proves beneficial in the long run. Since the common goal of all businesses is to establish a brand identity; blogs function to enhance this aspect while improving visibility on the Internet world.
Our team at Write Perfekt has the skills to write engaging health articles for your desired audience. We start by learning about your business and your goals, based on which a plan is developed. Your input regarding selection of keywords is always encouraged; we believe such participation enhances your satisfaction and always improves results. Once your business goals and keywords are streamlined; creation of blog posts in the form of health articles arises as the next challenge, which is best handled by our team of medical blog writers.
We offer customized plans to our regular customers. Although we work to provide you the service of medical blog writing, we always encourage you to review the blog posts and edit them if required; this is essential to ensure that the entire process of content-creation is under your own control.
You can check a few samples of our blog posts on our SAMPLES page.
To initiate or discuss a project, Contact Us.
We are always delighted to help you!
Objectives and scope
This audit takes into consideration Apple’s branding and analyse it by assuming that Apple adopts an umbrella branding strategy. It will take into account Apple’s main products and other related products that have emerged with the passage of time and as the company identified opportunities that could potentially be filled by its present line of products. During the process of audit, an attempt will be made to identify the shortcomings that the chosen brand manifests, which will later be used to develop a plan that can contribute to overcoming the shortcomings, identified earlier. The audit will consider brand inventory and brand exploratory of Apple to enlighten the reader about the various perceptions that prevail regarding the chosen brand.
Since its inception in 1976, Apple has demonstrated a growth that most other organizations only dream to achieve. From being a small business that was more or less limited to the manufacturing and sales of personal computers, Apple has become a giant, not only at the national level, but also at international level. Apple has struggled hard to achieve a unique branding position at the international level and in the process, it has managed to develop a common perception among consumers that it manufactures products of supreme quality that surpass the expectations of users. Not only has Apple achieved this, it has managed to present itself as a brand that is different from all other brands that produce and market similar products.
Taking a look at the logo of Apple brand reveals that it adopts a single color; an approach that changed after several years of company’s operation. The logo has remained the same after that. The logo displays an apple, with a bite taken from it. The logo is reflective of the high quality that this brand produces and once a person who is aware of the reputation of this brand sees this logo, s/he immediately associates it with high quality. The logo has become a symbol of extremely finest products in the electronic world (Rohan, 2016).
As far as packaging is concerned, Apple makes use of simple white colored boxes that carry very little information, other than the name of product, a colored picture and a few lines that explain the origin of product. Perhaps this simplicity is intentionally adopted to spark a feeling of curiosity that forces a person to open the product at the earliest. In other words, by choosing to provide little information on the product package, Apple successfully drags peoples’ attention towards the product itself, thereby making the opening of boxes a memorable experience that they may remember for extended periods of time (McElhearn, 2015).
The use of slogans is very interesting when Apple as a brand is taken into consideration. With the launch of new products, Apple makes use of a single line slogans to convince people about the value of their products. A simple line like “The biggest thing to happen to iPhone since iPhone”, is crafted to convey what the product delivers; but details are not provided to arouse curiosity, which forces potential buyers to question or buy the product.
Apple chooses to communicate its message wisely and it appears that a lot of work goes into communicating the message that is crafted with extreme care. For many other brands, it is a common approach to use celebrities for endorsements; thereby convincing consumers to buy products. Apple seems to disagree with this notion and instead adopts a strategy to seek a relationship with its consumers. Apple makes use of the least number of words and delivers those words in an extremely clever fashion. Its message portrays how special Apple products are and how they provide value to the consumers (Mattu, 2015). Since, Apple creates a sense of superiority among its users, it propagates ideas like “I am a Mac, I am a PC”, to inform its user that they can become superior if they use Apple products.
Another important aspect of the Apple brand is the pricing strategy that it adopts. Since Apple targets the elite segment of society, it always keeps its prices higher (Bastien, 2015). But this should not give the message that Apple’s products are only priced high; they are in fact made of supreme quality, which allows the company to charge prices that are considerably higher than equivalent products. Consequently, Apple promises to deliver unique style that suits perfectly to the needs of the elites. Hence, its pricing strategy is always a success, which is manifested by the amount of sales that are generated when new products are released.
Marketing and Delivery
Taking a look at how Apple delivers its products to consumers reveals that it makes use of multiple resources to achieve this. The use of its website, its Apps store, iTunes store, major retailers like Wal-Mart and dedicated Apple outlets located in various markets around the world are some of the means through which Apple products are distributed. Apple’s products are put on display at Apple outlets and they are available for use by potential buyers before they make their purchase decisions. Apple uses this opportunity to enhance its branding as consumers are more convinced after having first-hand experience of using Apple product at Apple outlets. Due to the use of multitude channels Apple successfully eliminates distances that may prevent its potential buyers from purchasing its products.
Taking a look at Apple’s competitors is important to understand how Apple performs against other important brands operating in the same market segment. It appears that many other well-known and established brands like Samsung, Blackberry, Dell and Microsoft create a challenging situation in the electronic market for Apple. Samsung appears to be at the forefront of this challenge as during the recent past enthusiasts of both brands witnessed legal struggle between both entities. Samsung is regarded as a brand that sells products that contain abundant features, most, of which are easy-to-use and loved by users. Consequently, Samsung’s focus in promotional campaigns revolves around specifications and richness of features. However, Apple’s competition with Samsung is more or less limited to the Smart phone area.
Another important product that Apple’s umbrella covers is the personal computer. As far as Apple’s competition in the personal computers market is concerned, Microsoft appears to be a strong opponent in this field. Microsoft’s operating system by the name of Windows is extremely famous due to its simplicity and availability throughout the world. The number of Windows users far exceed that of Apple’s operating system, which is only usable on Apple’s own computers and devices. A brief overview of POPs and PODs is given below:
Apple vs. Samsung
Smartphone devices manufacturing
Smart phone users market
Application based functioning of devices
Display colors and quality
Hardware and software
Target population segment (elite vs middle class)
Touch screen technology
Ease of use
Range of products
Apple vs. Microsoft
Range of products
Target Computer users
Target Smart phone users
Hardware and software
Easy of use
Compatibility with other machines
Targeted population segment
Personal computer manufacturing
Prior research studies about Apple’s branding are suggestive of the fact that users of Apple products perceive the company to be innovative, which provides them products that are extremely useful and very convenient to use (Gobeli and Brown, 1987). Apple primarily focuses on markets where it capable of making significant contributions, while ignoring those where its impact cannot possibly be significant (Smith et al, 1993). Research reveals that Apple’s vision is in alignment with the expectations of consumers; hence, it states “Apple is committed to bringing the best personal computing experience to students, educators, creative professionals, and consumers around the world through its innovative hardware, software and Internet offerings” (Zhang et al, 2004).
Apple, as a brand, instead of struggling for shelf space or position in retail stores, adopts a vertically integrated approach, in which it presents itself as not only the manufacturer of personal computers, but also a manufacturer of all related operating systems, hardware, user interface and the electronic parts that are used in their machines. Hence, unlike other companies that manufacture machines but are dependent upon others from softwares, Apple produces everything by itself; an aspect that is appreciated by consumers (Johnson et al, 2012).
Using a mind map to portray what comes to the mind of a consumer when s/he is exposed to Apple’s brand is interesting since it provides insight into an outsider’s perspective. A mental map of Apple brand is given below:
As far as brand awareness of Apple is concerned, it is regarded as being “top of mind awareness (Hakala et al, 2012). This stems from positive customer experiences coupled with various unique brand elements that help customer recognize and recall Apple with convenience. Apple’s favorability is so enhanced that users of Apple products are often regarded as displaying ‘blind loyalty’ due to their positive experiences (Kelly, 2014). Additionally, although Apple continues to introduce more and more products under its umbrella brand, it has managed to maintain consistent brand associations in users’ minds. This has been made possible by production of a consistently superior quality for the consumers. Consequently, it is safe to assert that the depth of Apple’s brand awareness is very high and people can easily recall this brand. Also important to consider is the breadth of brand awareness, which in the case of Apple is very high, since Apple products are thought of as possible solutions to a number of problems in real life (Fitzsimons et al, 2008).
An interesting aspect of Apple’s brands equity is that by creating positive experiences and by maintaining top of mind awareness, Apple now possesses customer based brand equity (Burmann et al, 2009). This directly translates into brand loyalty. Of the four parameters that help people judge a brand, Apple stands tall in all; these include superiority, credibility, quality and consideration. Hence, owning an Apple product bestows a feeling of satisfaction and pride.
A SWOT analysis of the Apple brand is given below:
Keeping in view the strengths and shortcomings mentioned earlier, it can be inferred that certain areas need improvement for which the available strengths can be utilized to overcome deficiencies. An important consideration in this regard is the improvement that can be introduced in Apple’s personal computers line. Although the company produces extremely reliable computing machines, their lack of compatibility with other machines renders them useless and less efficient in certain settings.
At present, the Apple brand appears to be totally dissociated from all other brands of computers. A lot of information about Apple computing machines is confidential and for this reason manufacturers of other computers are unable to develop machines that are compatible with Apple machines. Another disadvantage of this approach is that even loyal users of Apple machines find themselves in a difficult situation if the need to repair an Apple computer arises. The reason is a lack of qualified personnel that can handle repairs appropriately.
Another important aspect is the inability to repair an Apple computer. Besides, it is impossible to upgrade Apple computing machines. These aspects function as the limiting factors due to which a number of potential buyers hesitate to buy Apple machines. If the option to upgrade and a design that can allow repairs is marketed, chances are that the sale of Apple computers will increase significantly and will also contribute to brand enhancement.
Keeping in view the brand status that Apple enjoys in the market of computing machines, it is safe to assert that any new move by Apple computers regarding stretching its computer line will be appreciated significantly by its enthusiasts. The prevailing status of Mac machines is such that they continue to generate optimum amount of revenue for the company, despite the fact that very little changes are introduced to the new machines that are launched. Consequently, Apple is in a position to capitalize on its prevailing brand position to introduce a new line of computers that could fulfill the deficiencies mentioned earlier.
This new line of computers should possess the following features, to ensure that the brand maintains its prevailing position in the market.
The launch of this line of computers should be carried out in a manner that is similar to the launch of other Apple products. The product packaging should carry the same logo that appears on the packing of all Apple products. Two main factors that are expected to contribute to the success of this line of computers are 1) comparatively lower prices and 2) Apple’s brand. The lower price of computers is likely to attract the market segment that is unable to purchase expensive Mac machines due to lack of pocket power.
An attractive slogan like “Apple is now everyone’s machine” should be able to grasp the attention of every computer user. A sentence of this type will convey dual meanings; first, it will inform the reader that the machine has a price that anyone can pay; second, it will convey a message that the new machines are so adaptable and compatible that they can meet everyone’s requirements. In order to make sure that people maintain their confidence in Apple brand, the new line of computers should only be available in dedicated Apple outlets, where they should be on display just like Mac machines, but separately.
Bastien, V. 2015. Marketing To A High-End Consumer, Using The Luxury Strategy. Retrieved December 14, 2016, from https://www.entrepreneur.com/article/250745
Burmann, C., Jost-Benz, M. and Riley, N., 2009. Towards an identity-based brand equity model. Journal of Business Research, 62(3), pp.390-397.
Fitzsimons, G.M., Chartrand, T.L. and Fitzsimons, G.J., 2008. Automatic effects of brand exposure on motivated behavior: how apple makes you “think different”. Journal of consumer research, 35(1), pp.21-35.
Gobeli, D.H. and Brown, D.J., 1987. Analyzing product innovations. Research Management, 30(4), pp.25-31.
Hakala, U., Svensson, J. and Vincze, Z., 2012. Consumer-based brand equity and top-of-mind awareness: a cross-country analysis. Journal of Product & Brand Management, 21(6), pp.439-451.
Johnson, K., Li, Y., Phan, H., Singer, J. and Trinh, H., 2012. The Innovative Success that is Apple, Inc.
Kelly, G. 2014. The Majority of iPhone Users Admit to 'Blind Loyalty' - Why This Is A Problem For Apple. Retrieved December 14, 2016, from http://www.forbes.com/sites/gordonkelly/2014/03/21/the-majority-of-iphone-users-admit-to-blind-loyalty-why-this-a-problem-for-apple/
Mattu, R. 2015. Apple clarity and communication keep brand at top. Retrieved December 14, 2016, from https://www.ft.com/content/bff677c0-ef22-11e4-87dc-00144feab7de
McElhearn, K. 2015. Wrapping it right: In praise of Apple’s packaging | Macworld. Retrieved December 14, 2016, from http://www.macworld.com/article/2973339/tech-events-dupe/wrapping-it-right-in-praise-of-apple-s-packaging.html
Rohan, R. 2013. Semiotics Analysis of Apple Inc. logo. Retrieved December 14, 2016, from http://www.slideshare.net/RohitRohan/semiotics-analysis-of-the-apple-inc-logo
Smith, N.C., Quelch, J.A. and ... Smith-Quelch, 1993. Ethics in marketing(p. 21). Homewood, IL: Irwin.
Zhang, Z., Einbinder, L., and Seow, D. 2004. Apple - Press Info - Founder & Apple to Deliver World’s Best Digital Music Experience to Chinese Customers. Retrieved December 14, 2016, from https://www.apple.com/pr/library/2004/05/18Founder-Apple-to-Deliver-Worlds-Best-Digital-Music-Experience-to-Chinese-Customers.html
During the August of 2016, many unusual incidents of clown sightings started surfacing and a wave of fear spread across America, leaving everyone dreaded and confused, at least during the early sightings. The first incident took place on 29th August when people in South Carolina reported seeing a person wearing clown costume trying to lure children into the woods. During the following days, it became a routine as many similar reports from North Carolina, Georgia, Southern Alabama, Maryland, Pennsylvania, Florida, New Jersey and Phoenix were received. The law enforcement agencies were put on alert and the residents of these areas were advised to take necessary precautions, especially to protect children. Different explanations about clown sightings were given by different segments of the American population, some of which are discussed below.
First and foremost, since Halloween was approaching, many people regarded clown sightings as a creative way of celebrating this festival ahead of time. In their view, if this was true, the frequency of clown sightings was expected to rise with approaching Halloween (31st October). Moreover, clown sightings were expected to diminish once Halloween had passed.
Another interesting explanation was that since a remake of the movie called ‘IT’ was underway and it's release was planned to take place in 2017, clown sightings were regarded as a ‘viral marketing technique’ aimed at promoting the upcoming movie. ‘IT’ movie portrays the character of a clown that engages in acts of violence; which explains the fear associated with clowns in American society. This idea was further strengthened when ‘Stephen King’ tweeted in favor of the clowns saying: “Hey, guys, time to cool the clown hysteria--most of em are good, cheer up the kiddies, make people laugh”. Stephen King wrote the horror novel “IT” in 1986; the movie is based on this novel.
Another explanation was that since the American presidential election was approaching, clown sightings were a clever move by the American media and politicians. Headlines such as “Creepy clowns spook a country already freaked out by political ones” started surfacing and people were forced to think that ‘clown sightings’ was a plotted move by clever politicians to divert public attention from real problems. Some even went to the extent of labeling clowns as being the true reflection of presidential candidates. This aspect is depicted in the work of many artists that portrayed presidential candidates as clowns in their art works.
Interestingly, some people were of the idea that clown sightings in fact reflected the inner emotional state of the American society. In their view, the society was going through a period of stress and uncertainty, which caused excessive panic. Possible causes of panic included terrorist attacks, political polarization and a number of school shootings. Consequently, social anxiety was at its peak, and clown sightings reflected the deepest fears of American society.
Lastly, a considerable segment of the population was of the idea that clown sightings were nothing more than a social-media craze. Thousands of videos made by social media users surfaced; their spread was viral, which added to the already prevailing fear. A very famous hashtag was ‘ #IfISeeAClown ‘, since it provided access to clown sighting videos that were both funny and frightening.
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How can I get financial assistance for my study abroad?
How will I manage my finances?
How much money should I save for my education in a foreign country?
These are some of the most commonly asked questions regarding ‘money’ and it seems appropriate to discuss them here, to allow more and more students to benefit from this information.
Keeping in view the facts that scholarships are limited in number and a large number of students apply for them, it is logical to assume that their availability is hindered by competition. This may or may not be true; depending upon the number of students who actually qualify to get a scholarship in a particular field of study. Consequently, many scholarships may remain unutilized due to limited number of applicants. So, a good rule is to “always apply for as many scholarships as possible”. You can search for scholarships yourself or inquire about them from your ‘Office of Foreign Affairs’ (or the likes); this information is essential and can provide you the opportunity to get completely or partially free education; depending upon the type of scholarship you are able to avail.
As more and more students are turning towards the idea of studying in foreign countries, the availability of funding is increasingly becoming a problem. Rules differ from one educational institution to another and hence generalizations cannot be made in this regard. In many instances, your domestic financial aid package (for education at local level) is considered relevant and valid for your education abroad. This means you are likely to benefit to the same level and extent during your study in foreign institutions as you benefit locally.
The next option is to save money. Although this method of funding was widely used in the past, it appears that this trend is changing. Firstly, due to rising inflation, it is almost impossible to ascertain with confidence the expenses that are likely to accrue in the future; so one cannot plan how much to save. Secondly, due to the sharp rise in living expenses, saving for education is no more a viable option. The tendency to save for education is therefore declining. One clever option is to invest your money (e.g. in real estate, stock market etc.) and sale your merchandise when you need it for education; however, the reality is that very few people are able to plan things in this way.
Getting a bank loan for education is a workable option and many banks around the world provide this facility. The terms and conditions for securing such loans differ from one country to another. In under-developed countries, most banks are reluctant to provide loans to the ‘really-deserving’ students due to the risks associated with recovering such loans. In developed countries on the other hand, getting a loan for educational purposes is often a convenient option; hence many students opt for such loans.
An important thing to remember in this regard is the difference between loans and scholarships/financial aid. While scholarships and financial aids benefit you by all means, bank-loans are different in two ways. First, you have to pay back your loan after graduating from the institution. Second, you have to pay additional amount of money i.e. interest. So, a clever idea in this regard is to search for the most appropriate bank and loan-plan that fulfills your needs, but adds little to your financial burdens. Remember:
High interest rate = More problem in paying back after you graduate
Fake Bank Statements
Interestingly, one of the most commonly used method is the use of a ‘fake bank statement’ to make foreign educational institutions believe that the student or his family is capable of bearing the expenses. This cannot however be recommended as it is morally and legally unacceptable. Students submitting such fake bank statements often plan to ‘earn while they learn’. Although it used to be a feasible option in the past; it has now become a problem in some countries and students opting for this option should confirm if they are legally allowed to ‘work’ in their destination country.
by Dr. Shakeel Zulfiqar.
What is life, at moments I thought
A rose bud then told me a lot
Life begins with the start of bloom
With joy around in the whole room
Buds when flower, the youth arrives
With nightingale and bees and butterflies
The petals then drop one by one
Leaving the beauty to almost none
I wonder why most folk quarrel a lot
When everyone knows, life is so short!
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'One Flew Over the Cuckoo’s Nest' by Ken Kesey is the story of a prisoner name McMurphy, who is shifted to a mental care facility for treatment. The hospital ward then becomes the playground for McMurphy’s activities which slowly become troublesome for the authorities. This work is in fact a reflection of the social conditions prevailing at the time when it was written and one can clearly see the difference, if the incidents portrayed in this work are compared with the prevailing conditions of today’s society.
The story is narrated by Chief, a patient who has remained in that ward for an extended period of time. McMurphy, the new patient upon arrival takes some time to understand the prevailing conditions of the hospital ward. He closely observes the way in which patients are treated and he soon realizes that Nurse Ratched exerts absolute control over the lives of patients. Due to his inherent nature of accepting challenges, he takes the initiative to challenge Nurse Ratched’s authority.
McMurphy possesses the required leadership skills that are needed to motivate his fellow patients. So, in a very short time, he manages to turn them into his followers who are willing to accept his orders. This ‘kingdom within a kingdom’ is not quite appreciated by Nurse Ratched, who happens to be the real master of this ward. The struggle between both parties continues, until McMurphy gets the courage to choke Nurse Ratched and tear her clothes, thereby exposing her breasts; a symbol of femininity. Ultimately, Nurse Ratched takes control of the situation and sends McMurphy for lobotomy; a procedure that renders McMurphy powerless and totally dependent upon others for the rest of his life. At this point, McMurphy is murdered by the Chief, who then sets himself free by utilizing a technique that was taught to him by McMurphy during his lifetime.
Taking a closer look at the story reveals that this work reflects the norms of the society of that time. Women were regarded as being the ‘weaker sex’ and they were expected to behave in a similar fashion. The act of exposing Nurse Ratched’s breasts conveys the meaning that in a world (ward) full of men, the authority cannot belong to a woman. Moreover, law and rules are made to intimidate people, as manifested by the way Nurse Ratched decides McMurphy’s fate; she sends him for lobotomy merely due to her personal grudges against him. Lastly, the only people who benefit from conflicts are opportunists like the Chief, who acts dumb and deaf until he realizes that he can set himself free.
Based on the above discussion, it is clear that this work clearly depicts many bitter realities of life in a very interesting manner. A comparison of the conditions portrayed in this work with the present conditions provides a deeper insight into how our society has evolved over time. Human behaviors are certainly very complex and a portrayal of a variety of human behaviors, makes ‘One Flew Over the Cuckoo’s Nest’ a unique work, that will continue to inspire the minds of readers.
The following paragraphs will help you start your essay on 'Road Ends'; a novel by Mary Lawson.
“Road Ends” by Mary Lawson is the story of a large dysfunctional family that resides in Struan, Ontario, which is a small town with abundant woods. Although the family is living under one roof, members of the family appear to be detached from each other. The author has created an environment which gives an impression that members of this family are not connected in a profound manner. Every member of the family appears to be struggling in a unique way, depending upon his or her own circumstances. Challenges are different for every individual member of the family, and so are the strategies that are adopted to cope with these challenges.
The author relates the prevailing conditions of the family to the behaviors and decisions of family members. These behaviors and decisions are in turn governed either by their responsibility to self or responsibility to others. A persistent battle between these two choices is portrayed as the factor that directly or indirectly affects the lives of family members. It appears that the author has tried to convey the message that responsibility to others is of prime importance in matters of a family and this is the only means through which a satisfactory family life can be ensured.
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Below are some pointers to guide your essay related to Problems in the Canadian Education System:
- The emphasis of education is on formal education directed at producing an effective labor force.
- Education is not free at the post-secondary level and students have to pay for tuition and books.
- Teachers cannot use planned teaching strategies since the curriculum is too crowded.
- Grades are the aim of education; not learning.
- Increasing rate of Youth violence, depression and suicide.
- Older methods of instruction are still practiced.
- Learning is more theoretical than practical.
- Educational reforms are often based on short-sighted and politically motivated efforts.
- Students come from education systems that are different from Canada’s and due to racism and other barriers, the new immigrants and refugees have difficulty in connecting to the mainstream Canadian educational curriculum and pedagogy.
- International students have to overcome an initial culture shock before they become accustomed to Canadian Academic Culture.
- Skills like focused listening, critical thinking, academic writing, class participation, academic note taking are not part of the regular courses in Canadian post-secondary institutions.
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An annotated bibliography is a summary/detail of the list of sources (journals, books etc) that are used by a researcher/student for the project at hand. Students are often instructed to write annotated bibliographies for different purposes.
A bibliography serves to:
- Summarize a source
- Evaluate a source
- Reflect on the applicability of source to the project at hand
Depending on the purpose, the following may be included in a bibliography:
- A Heading in the form of citation (according to the desired citation style)
- 1st paragraph: Introduction to the chosen source. If it is a research work, state whether it utilizes a qualitative, quantitative or mixed approach. Data collection methods, participants of study, members of sample, number of participants and their selection criteria and the setting of the study can all be mentioned here.
- 2nd paragraph: Explain what the source conveys to the reader. If it is a research work, mention the research question in narrative form. If the study utilizes a conceptual framework or a theory, mention here.
- 3rd paragraph: If it is a research work, mention the main findings of study.
- 4th paragraph: If it is a research work, explain how the findings of this study can be applied in real life settings.
- 5th paragraph: How the findings of this work/research can contribute to your own work i.e the project at hand. Is it supportive? Does it contribute significantly to your own work?
The 3rd and 4th paragraphs may be omitted in many cases (e.g. in bibliographies of books, literature works etc); however, their use in bibliographies of research works seems relevant.
Remember, the above guidelines are only to guide your thought process and different works may demand altered approaches to bibliographies. So, the above should be adjusted to meet the requirements of your academic work.
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It is quite common for students to get employed during their tenure at educational institutions. The reason for employment may be different for different students, but the primary purpose of these jobs is ‘financial support’. The single largest occupational category that engages most student workers is ‘sales’. Students get very little share in ‘white collar’ occupations and many have to work as kitchenhands, cleaners, farmhands, gardeners and labourers.
As far as the impact of employment on educational outcomes is concerned, students who are intense workers (working >10 hours/week) tend to underperform slightly. Disengagement from schools may force the students to take longer job hours and such students may perceive the fiscal benefits of job as being superior to academic achievements. Student retention rates are higher if they are not allowed to work at all, or, if they are not allowed to work beyond the 10-15 hours/week limit.
As far as the reasons to take jobs are concerned, students take job because they:
Regardless of the reason for taking a job, students often have to face simultaneous and conflicting demands that arise due to performance of multiple roles (e.g. roles of employee, student, parent, spouse, friend and so on), which result in exceedingly high levels of stress and ultimately leads to failure.
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The words 'broke', 'college' and 'students' are so frequently used together, it appears that every student is weak in financial terms. Many students may actually have financial problems, but choosing an accommodation wisely before the start of semester may minimize such problems to a great extent. It appears logical to invest some time in searching for an appropriate accommodation; a necessity that can cover many fiscal deficiencies during one’s tenure at an educational institution. Below is a list of questions that will help you in your accommodation search, by preventing you from becoming a victim of choosing the wrong accommodation.
Read the following questions one-by-one and by the time you get to the end of this document, you'll have a fair idea about what to look for in an accommodation, when taking this decision.
- Is the accommodation close to University?
- Are there shops nearby?
- Can you travel to your place late at night?
- What means of transport are available and at what times?
- Are there bus stops, health facilities, supermarkets and restaurants nearby?
- Are your friends residing close to your accommodation?
- If you do a part-time job, is your workplace nearby?
- Is the accommodation located in a safe area?
- How frequent are criminal activities in the neighborhood?
- Are burglar alarm systems and safety locks in place?
- Are the windows and other access points secure?
- Are fire alarms and extinguishers in working condition?
- Are emergency exits marked?
- Are CCTV cameras installed and working?
Condition of Accommodation
- Is the property properly cleaned?
- Have you met the tenants who recently moved out? (to get an idea about the problems with accommodation).
- Have you checked the walls for presence of mould? (areas around windows, wardrobes, ceilings, walls and wallpapers should be checked for flaking paint)
- Are there any signs of infestations? (check out for mice, rats, slugs, cockroaches etc.)
- Are maintenance services instantly available?
Water and Appliances
- Is the water pressure in taps optimum?
- Is the toilet flush in working condition?
- Are electrical appliances (fridge, fans, microwave, lights, plug sockets etc.) in working condition?
- Are you clear which appliances/objects are included in tenancy?
- Is the size/number of appliance(s) sufficient to meet the needs of group members who plan to live together?
- Is the furniture appropriately maintained? (Check the beds for broken springs etc.)
Heating, Ventilation, Air-conditioning and Insulation
- Is the heating system properly installed?
- Are radiators in working condition?
- Are boilers new or old?
- Are windows double-glazed?
- Are exhaust fans in working condition?
- Have you chosen the right group of friends?
- Are you sure you are not making this decision in a hurry?
- Is the landlord using “pressure-tactics” to make you sign an agreement?
- Have you met the ‘landlord’ or the ‘manager’ of accommodation in person? Will they be available in emergencies?
- Is there a student letting agent involved? If so, how much is the agent’s fee?
- Are “energy bills” included in the rent? (They are perhaps the biggest financial burden for students)
- Is the landlord providing everything that was mentioned in advertisement?
- Are TV and Internet connection included in tenancy?
- A huge flat screen television, a leather sofa or other similar attractions may be used by landlords to cover their deficiencies or to increase the rent of property. Are you sure you are not being tricked into choosing an accommodation by showing such attractions?
- Has the landlord informed you when to move in?
- Have you and your friends read and understood the terms of tenancy that are mentioned in the agreement?
- Has the landlord provided you a copy of the Gas Safety certificate?
- Will sharers sign a single/common tenancy agreement or will every sharer sign an individual tenancy agreement?
- Are you renting in a non-student area? If so, a ‘break clause' inserted in the agreement will allow you to end the tenancy after 6 months have passed (by serving 2 months' notice).
- How does the landlord expect you to pay the rent?
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The paragraphs below will help you start your essay on Police Brutality
The law enforcement agencies of a country are responsible for maintaining peace and providing protection to the masses that are otherwise vulnerable to damage caused by antisocial elements of the society. Our education system teaches and promotes the notion of trusting and helping the law enforcement sector to ensure the creation of an environment that is favorable to every citizen of the society. However, our first-hand experience with the law enforcement sector fails to align with our learned ideas due to the fact that the police does not function according to our expectations.
Various incidents that are reflective of the unethical and brutal nature of police action continue to surface on a regular basis. In most cases, victims are unarmed and unprepared citizens that are offended by trained and armed police officers. The use of unnecessary and excessive force by officers of the police department may take the form of severe beatings, unethical verbal attacks and in some cases unjustified shootings. All these actions are performed in the name of enforcing the law and maintaining peace, although it is now clear that these notions are utilized to hide the heinous nature of crimes that are committed by police.
This paper will discuss the issue of police brutality and highlight the ways in which police acts to hide the true nature of their crimes and corruption. Additionally, this paper will take into account the issues that arise secondary to police brutality and aim to establish solutions that are necessary to prevent civilians from becoming victims of police brutality.
The paragraphs below will help you start your essay on Swimming.
Exercise has a profoundly beneficial impact on the human body and it is for this reason that regular physical exercise is recommended by health care professionals all around the world. Different exercises have been developed to confer physical advantage and to meet the individual needs that arise due to professional requirements. Although every exercise has its own benefits, swimming is considered to provide health advantages that surpass the benefits provided by any other exercise.
Swimming is regarded as a “whole body” exercise due to the fact that nearly all parts of the human body participate in this activity. By providing a perfect blend of resistance and aerobic training, swimming bestows exceptional physical and mental benefits. This improvement in physical fitness is related to better functioning of cardiovascular, muscular, respiratory and nervous systems. Just like the physical benefits, psychological rewards related to swimming are also extraordinary and they can have a long-lasting impact on the mental health of individuals. Mood elevation and reduction in psychological stress are common manifestations of the improvement that is observed in individuals who practice swimming as a form of exercise.
This paper will take into account the various benefits of swimming as they relate to our physical, social and mental wellbeing while highlighting the ways in which swimming contributes to the improved functioning of cardiovascular, muscular and other systems of the body.
By Dr. Shakeel Zulfiqar.
Persuading a person involves the use of reasoning or temptation to convince about an idea or action that is desired. The idea of persuading someone is gentler in comparison to the notion of ‘arguing’ which may comprise the use of attack tactics to promote acceptance of an idea. The list of essay topics given below will serve to stimulate your thought process to allow you to conceive an idea of your own for your essay. Opposing views can be used to develop a written composition with a novel perspective.
Below is a list of selected topics for your use:
1) Leadership is ‘position’ NOT ‘action’.
2) Magazine advertisements influence women to transform their bodies into ‘stick figures’.
3) Euthanasia and Physician-assisted suicide are essentially the same.
4) Recycling is a hoax promoted by manufacturers to gain access to cheap raw materials.
5) Bullying awareness programs in fact contribute to increase bullying.
6) Gun ownership should be promoted to control crimes.
7) Biological fathers of children should be bound to bear child-raising expenses.
8) Sex education has no effect on reducing sexually transmitted diseases (STDs).
9) Parenting lessons should be a part of high school curriculum.
10) Dietary/Nutritional supplements in fact contribute to our national disease burden.
11) Cloning is in fact Reincarnation.
12) Prostitution is a personal choice.
13) Rape and Incest cannot be regarded as justified reasons for abortion.
14) Co-education contributes positively to academic gains.
15) Cyber-bullying is a more destructive form of bullying.
16) Legalizing prostitution can contribute significantly to tax revenue generation.
17) Graffiti paintings enhance the beauty of cities.
18) Genetically modified chickens should not be considered chickens.
19) Euthanasia (mercy killing) favors capital punishment.
20) Beauty contests (females) and body-building contests (males) contribute to segregation of sexes.
21) Network television is in fact ‘Mass Mind Control’.
22) Fluoride in the toothpaste can lower our IQ.
23) Traffic accidents and the use of cell phone are interrelated.
24) Ebola Virus Disease is a reflection of human vulnerability to disease.
25) ‘Free speech’ and ‘limitations’ do not align with each other.
As new topics become available, we will add them to the list.
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Getting confused about essay types is a common happening and many students tend to mix-up over various essay types; thereby losing the purpose of writing an essay altogether. Students who are new to Essay Writing will find these lines helpful. Remember, essays are written with a variety of aims in mind and depending upon the purpose, a writer chooses the most appropriate type to achieve his goals. Some of the most commonly encountered essay types include the following:
Five Paragraphs Essay - 1 introductory paragraph, 3 body paragraphs, and 1 conclusion paragraph.
Narrative Essay - Involves telling a story, which may include a plot, dialogues and characters.
Argumentative Essay – This type of essay is characterized by systematic reasoning to prove that the writer’s opinion or hypothesis is correct and more convincing than other opinions or theories. It should contain arguments along with counter-arguments.
Expository Essay - Intended to explain/describe something to the reader. It may be used to deliver a personal response to a topic or issue.
Analytical Essay – Requires the use of analytical skills or logical reasoning to interpret things like a work of art, a book, a poem etc. The essay involves an ‘analysis’ followed by a ‘personal response’.
Cause and Effect Essay - Involves identification of a cause and then relating it to consequences.
Compare and Contrast Essay – The purpose is to highlight the similarities and differences of a given subject.
Persuasive Essay - Involves persuading the reader to do or believe something through reasoning. The purpose is to convince the reader about a certain idea or fact.
Research Essay/Paper - Involves researching a topic to frame an opinion.
Originally emerging as a social media phenomenon, the Ice Bucket Challenge went viral during the 2013-2014 period, after it was televised and brought to mainstream viewers. The idea was to challenge a person to pour a bucket of ice water on his/her head while filming the incident to share it with others later on. What originally started as an activity for fun later became a source of funding for research on Amyotrophic Lateral Sclerosis (ALS). Hence, the person who failed to accept the challenge had to donate $100 to the research fund dedicated to ALS. However, those who accepted the challenge were allowed to pay less. Consequently, the ALS association managed to raise more than $30 million within a period of one month starting from July 29th 2014.
This entirely novel notion of viral fundraising met considerable success and millions of videos related to Ice Bucket Challenge were shared on social media. However, the idea was criticized by many due to a variety of reasons. For some, the research on ALS was not appropriate due to the use of animals in experimentation. Another objection was regarding wastage of water in regions of drought. Medical professionals were worried about the potentially damaging effects of pouring ice water on unwell individuals. Lastly, many considered this challenge to be a cause of reduced funding to causes other than ALS research.
Despite criticism, the ice bucket challenge successfully contributed towards a noble cause in a way that involved more and more individuals with the passage of time.
by Dr. Shakeel Zulfiqar.
Managing employees in organizations requires managers to assess the strengths, competencies and limitations of their subordinates accurately. In order to meet the strategic objectives of the organizations and compete effectively, managers are constantly under pressure to enhance the performance levels of subordinates. Motivation is an important tool used by managers to inspire employees to raise their performance levels. Understanding organizational psychology can assist managers in their efforts to motivate subordinates. This paper discusses how managers can employ theories of personality and power relations to perform their managerial functions effectively. In particular, the usefulness of these personality and power-relations theories to increase employee motivation is discussed.
Role of Personality Theories
Most personality theories can be classified as psychoanalytical, trait and behaviourist theories. Each of these describes important aspects of personality that can inform organizational strategy to motivate employees and improve their performance. This section describes the components of some important personality theories and discusses how an understanding of these theories can help managers to provide professional development and improvement opportunities to their subordinates.
Freud’s theory of personality acknowledges the role of the id, ego and superego. The ego, operating under the reality principle (Saha, 2006, p. 226), can be developed in the organizational environment by teaching employees about thinking and manifesting behavior in a certain way to attain the rewards they seek. In this way, the pleasure principle is also satisfied because ultimately employees put in greater effort to get their desired rewards in the form of a promotion, better performance appraisal or increased perquisites. Managers can also use Jung’s theory of personality to offer appropriate training and educational programs to employees (Luthans, 2011, p. 134). By analyzing the dominant personality traits and learning styles of employees, managers can develop group activities for those with an extroverted learning style, while access to detailed information can be offered to those with a thinking or judging learning style.
Similarly, employees with an introverted learning style can be offered opportunities to learn through listening and reflection. Managers can also invoke the tension between inferiority and inferiority complex identified by Adler in his theory of personality. According to his theory, individuals are motivated by a perceived sense of inferiority acquired from the environment to attain a higher level of selfhood (Srivastava, 2005, p. 62). Managers can offer challenging work assignments and projects that will motivate employees to put in excellent performance and emerge as superior employees.
Horney’s (1937) theory of personality can also supplement the ideas of Adler. Managers can encourage employees to articulate the disparity between their ideal and real selves. They can then offer professional development opportunities and challenging work assignments to exploit the neurotic state of tension within employees. As a result, employees work harder to come closer to their ideal self. Erikson’s eight stage model of personality can assist managers and organizational psychologists to assess the barriers to the emotional and psychological development of employees so that relevant interventions can be offered. Employees with low self-esteem and performance issues may be experiencing mistrust, shame, doubt, inferiority and role confusion carried over from earlier stages of development (Mullins, 2005, p. 137). Management can develop programs and offer coaching to help employees resolve these issues and proceed towards generativity and ego integrity in their careers.
Among the trait theories of personality, the work of Allport offers useful ideas to be incorporated into organizational and employee development programs. Managers can use this model to identify the cardinal, central and secondary traits of their employees (Aquinas, 2006, p. 50). Once the traits have been identified, steps can be taken to reinforce and nurture those that contribute to effective performance while those that inhibit performance and positive emotions should be repressed. Cattell’s model of personality provides further wealth of information and support to organizational management through a 16-factor model of personality. This can be used by managers to analyse the personality development needs of employees as well as their unique strengths.
Some of the factors discussed in Cattell’s model include abstractedness, liveliness, openness to change, reasoning, social boldness and vigilance (King and Lawley, 2013, p. 250). Jobs and work can be assigned according to the dominant personality characteristics of employees, such as by appointing a discrete employee to manage regulatory and legal affairs whereas an employee with high emotional stability may be appointed as the public relations manager.
One of the most well-known theories of personality was developed by Abraham Maslow. His needs-based theory offers a unique perspective of personality as an evolutionary and progressive process. According to this model, individuals are motivated by different levels of needs ranging from the basic physiological needs to self-actualization needs (Sims, 2002, p. 59). Therefore, a new employee may be motivated to put in better performance by offering higher pay whereas a senior employee may be offered new or challenging work assignments to renew his or her skills and knowledge.
Managers can also employ Rogers’ person-centered and positivist personality theory by creating an environment where employees are provided timely and appropriate cues about their performance (Suhd, 1995). Such feedback can enable employees to form accurate and realistic self-concepts (Suhd, 1995). They can then direct their efforts towards increasing congruity between their real and ideal selves. In such an environment, employees can also be encouraged to apply the scientific method of analyzing and testing their behavioral assumptions proposed in Kelly’s personal construct psychology theory (Robertson, 2005, p. 204).
Furthermore, as suggested by Skinner and other behaviourist theorists of personality, managers can use positive and negative reinforcement tools to regulate employee behaviour and direct the learning and unlearning of new work habits (Jones and George, 2009, p. 535). They can also manage the relationship between the employee’s behaviour, environment and psychological processes to enable employees to learn from their environment. Bandura’s social cognitive theory, which explains how people learn by observing others in their environment (French, Bell, and Vohra, 2006), can be used by managers to offer constructive and accurate feedback that can help employees to improve their skills, attitudes and task performance.
Role of Theories of Power Relations
Power is an important dynamic in organizational management. Managers depend on power as a source of influence in their relationships with subordinates. This section describes some of the important concepts of power as illustrated in organizational management. These concepts are then explored from the perspective of management as to how these may be incorporated into strategies for motivating employees to perform at exceptional levels in the organization.
Power is a source of influence in organizations (Cummings and Worley, 2009, p. 174). Organizations can be construed as a web of relationships where managers are responsible for motivating and guiding employees to channelize their energies in the pursuit of organizational goals. When power is exercised by managers, employees can respond to it in different ways depending on how the manifested power is perceived by them. For instance, subordinates may comply with the instructions of the manager if they perceive negative costs of non-compliance. The fear of punishment can motivate employees to obey the manager and pursue the recommended course of action without offering any resistance (Braveman, 2006, p. 144). This elicits only a minimum level of performance as employees are not convinced about the effectiveness of the measure.
When power is demonstrated through more inclusive means, subordinates can be led to identify and accept the proposed measure and put in increased emotional commitment to the performance of their duties. On the other hand, where the demonstration of power is perceived to be hostile or too weak, subordinates are likely to put up resistance to challenge or subvert the efforts of managers to control their actions. Thus, managers should always adopt a strategy that takes into consideration the prevailing environmental as well as the quality of the relationship shared with subordinates.
The manifestation and outcomes of power in organizational relationships depends on the sources of power. Traditionally, six sources of power in organizations have been identified. These consist of coercive power, reward power, legitimate power, expert power, referent power, and informational power (French et al. 2011, p. 486). Coercive power is likely to induce compliance while prolonged use of coercive power can cause employees to increase resistance and rebel against management. Reward, referent and informational sources are more conducive to effective performance and motivation because they involve a movement of desired assets (financial rewards, praise, acceptance, information and knowledge, etc.) from management to subordinates. Therefore, managers who build these sources of power are perceived as legitimate authorities by their subordinates and are accepted as leaders. These managers become invested with the legitimate and moral authority to direct the efforts of their subordinates and motivate them to improved performance.
The power relationships in organizational management can also be affected by the kind of influence tactics used by managers to motivate employees. Kotter (1985) explains that organizational excellence depends on the excellence of individual employees. Depending on the situation, managers may employ rational persuasion based on facts and objective data to motivate subordinates to pursue a certain course of action (Lussier and Achua, 2013, p. 150). On the other hand, in some instances, persuasive appeals may be more effective such as when convincing employees to put in more work during a financial crisis in the organization. Managers can build greater social capital and personal credibility by involving subordinates in the decision making process. Thus, by adopting consultative discussions and coalition building with subordinates, managers can expect reduced resistance and greater commitment to their decisions. Where appropriate, managers also make use of personal appeal, convenient exchanges and may even resort to pressure tactics to achieve compliance and acceptance from subordinates.
Power plays an important role in organizational politics. Politics in organization involves the creation and management of mutually beneficial relationships in the form of coalitions, teams, cliques and pressure groups (Sinha, 2008, p. 220). These groups use various sources of power (e.g. informational, personal, etc.) to influence organizational decisions. Politics and impression management can also occur within departments as managers and subordinates vie for influence.
Sharing knowledge and power increases the motivation level of employees according to Herzberg’s two-factor theory of motivation (Griffin and Moorhead, 2010). This theory explains that managers who offer access to information sources and employ other ways of empowering subordinates are more successful at increasing motivation and commitment among subordinates. Herzberg’s theory also offers scope to employ carious sources of power such as reward power (e.g. in the form of promotions and more challenging work) and informational power (e.g. in the form of greater involvement in decision making). Other theories such as Alderfer’s existence-relatedness-growth theory (Miner, 2007) and McClellan’s achievement-power-affiliation theory (Miner, 2007) can also sensitize managers about the different ways through which employees can be motivated.
Thus, according to McClellan’s theory, employees with a high need for power can be motivated by managers who bargain some share of their power with subordinates. Similarly, according to Alderfer’s theory, managers can motivate employees with growth needs by offering rewards and supervisory roles in upcoming projects. At the same time, managers should also be cautious about how power and rewards are distributed in the organization. Equity theory implies that motivation declines when employees perceive that rewards of improved performance are not being distributed fairly and equitably (Miner, 2007). Managers should also follow expectancy theory and make the relationship between effort, performance, and reward explicit through their words, policies, and actions. Managers can use the concepts and theories of power relations to improve the performance levels in their work group, department and organization.
The foregoing discussion shows that organizational management can greatly benefit from the personality and power relations theories developed by organizational psychology. Subordinates are in constant need of direction and encouragement from managers and respond favorably to managers who offer opportunities for subordinates to satisfy their diverse needs and to grow professionally. Managers well-versed in theories of personality and power relations can motivate their subordinates in increasingly productive ways.
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