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What happens when one of your employees is pregnant or becomes injured or seriously ill and won’t be able to perform their job for an extended period? Two federal laws, the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA) and the Family and Medical Leave Act (FMLA), regulate how employers must handle these situations. Some states have additional laws regarding disability leave.
We’ll explore disability leave, who’s covered and what responsibilities business owners have when employees qualify for disability leave.What is disability leave?
Disability leave is a leave of absence granted to employees who can’t perform their job functions due to a physical or medical condition or temporary disability, with or without reasonable accommodations.
Disability leave doesn’t count as paid time off (PTO). Instead, it’s an approved absence provided as an accommodation.
Did You Know?
Any injuries or illnesses that occur on the job are typically covered by workers’ compensation, not disability.How do the ADA and FMLA govern disability leave?
Employees may become entitled to disability-related leave under the FMLA and ADA. There are distinct differences between the two federal laws.
“The main difference between FMLA and a disability leave is the compensation,” explained Lewis Mayhew, CEO and founder of South Scaffolding. “FMLA-eligible employees are not paid [during the leave], and [it] usually applies to an employee’s family but also to the employee’s own health condition as well. Disability leave is a doctor-approved personal injury or illness, and compensation is at the discretion of the employer. FMLA is also applicable to employees who have worked in an organization for at least a year, so it is ideal for long-term employees.”Disability under the ADA
The ADA’s disability rules apply to any employer with at least 15 employees. It ensures that any employee who can’t perform their job functions has the right to take disability leave or make use of reasonable accommodations like scheduling changes.Disability under the FMLA
The FMLA requires employers to provide employees with unpaid leave for family issues, such as adoption, pregnancy, family or personal illness, or military leave. It ensures the employee has health insurance coverage continuation and job protection while they are away from work.
The FMLA applies to the following types of employers:
Private employers with 50 or more local employees
All public agencies
All schools (public and private)
Not all employees are covered under the FMLA — only those who’ve been with the company a year or more and worked at least 1,250 hours in the previous 12 months.
Under the FMLA, disabled workers can take up to 12 weeks of unpaid leave, during which their employer-provided health insurance remains in effect. After the 12 weeks, they get their old job or an equivalent position back.
“FMLA broadens protections and coverage across a range of situations preventing the employee from working,” said Jim Pendergast, senior vice president and general manager at altLINE. “That could be medical, but it might also be because of a family emergency, an adoption, or because of situations related to military deployments.”
The ADA and FMLA serve as employment and anti-discrimination laws in the workplace. They prevent the unfair treatment of employees who can’t perform their jobs due to a disability or temporary disabling condition.Who is covered under disability leave?
Most employees are eligible for disability leave, as long as they meet the insurance provider’s requirements. Many providers have eligibility requirements regarding the employee’s minimum earnings, how long they’ve been an employee, and whether they are a full-time or part-time worker.
In addition, to qualify for disability leave under the ADA, the employee must have a physical or mental impairment that significantly limits one or more “major life activities” or “major bodily functions.” Chronic conditions like cancer and Crohn’s disease can also qualify as disabilities.
The ADA defines the following as major life activities:
Performing manual tasks
Taking care of oneself
These are some of the qualifying major bodily functions that may be impaired:
Neurological system and brain
If you have questions about disability leave, call the Job Accommodation Network, a free service sponsored by DOL’s Office of Disability Employment Policy, at 1-800-526-7234 or 1-800-ADA-WORK (1-800-232-9675) (voice/TTY).What are the two types of disability leave?
There are two primary types of disability leave: short-term and long-term.
Short-term disability. Short-term disability (STD) leave is a business insurance benefit that provides compensation or income replacement for non-job-related injuries or illnesses that leave an employee unable to work for a limited time. STD policies will pay for employee benefits for a limited time, usually three months to a year. Generally, short-term plans are less expensive when purchased as part of a group plan and offered as a company-paid benefit. Generally, a private insurance program provides compensation when an employee is on short-term disability leave. Employees must be covered by a short-term disability policy to use the benefits. As an employer, you can offer short-term disability plans to your employees, or they can choose to purchase one elsewhere.
Long-term disability. Long-term disability (LTD) leave pays benefits for anywhere from two years to life, depending on the employee’s condition and the policy. The longer the benefit period, the higher the premium.
The two types of policies are designed to work together. STD leave covers an employee immediately following a serious injury or illness. LTD insurance is meant to replace income if an employee is kept out of work past the end of their short-term disability benefits period.
Short-term and long-term disability work together to manage employee benefits. Short-term policies pay for employee benefits during the waiting period before long-term benefits (if necessary) kick in.What are an employer’s responsibilities regarding disability leave?
As an employer, you must know what you are required — and not required — to provide or do regarding disability leave. Here are six crucial rules to understand if you’re starting a business or already running one.1. You are required to purchase STD insurance in certain states.
If you are an employer in California, Hawaii, New Jersey, New York or Rhode Island, you are required to purchase STD insurance for your employees. Depending on your state, you may be able to choose between a state and private policy. You might also have the choice of paying for the policy yourself, having employees pay it or sharing the cost.2. You are only required to provide disability leave by law in certain situations.
As an employer, you can establish policies that apply to all employees regardless of disability status. However, you can’t refuse leave to an employee with a disability if other employees are offered leave. You might also be required to provide reasonable accommodations, such as flextime benefits or unpaid leave to a disabled employee.
Did You Know?
If an employee’s disability is covered by both the ADA and the FMLA, employers must provide leave under whichever law offers the most rights and benefits to the employee.3. You are not required to provide disability leave so an employee can care for their relative.
Under the ADA, you are not required to modify your leave policy to allow an employee to care for a family member; employees can only use disability leave for themselves. However, the FMLA covers unpaid leave for an employee to care for a family member.4. You are required to hold an employee’s job for them while they are on leave.
Under the FMLA, when the employee returns from leave, you must give them either their old job or a job that provides the same salary and benefits as their previous position. Additionally, you must continue to provide the employee with health insurance during their leave.5. You are not required to pay employees who are on disability leave.
As an employer, you are not required to provide paid leave under the ADA or FMLA. However, California, Hawaii, New York, New Jersey and Rhode Island all require some form of paid leave.
Paid leave types include vacation time, holiday time, sick leave, bereavement leave, sabbaticals and more.6. You must have a certain number of employees for the FMLA and ADA to apply.
The ADA and FMLA only intersect if your business has 50 or more employees. This is because the ADA applies to businesses with 15 or more employees, while the FMLA applies to businesses with 50 or more. Each law also has different parameters regarding what qualifies an employee for leave. Here are several examples:
If an employee is injured on the job, they are covered by workers’ compensation and must go through the workers’ compensation claims process.
If an employee has a serious health condition, they are covered by the FMLA.
If the employee’s condition meets the definition of a disability, they are covered by the ADA.
Jennifer Dublino contributed to this article. Source interviews were conducted for a previous version of this article.
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Intellectual disability and developmental disability are two terms that are often used interchangeably, but they actually refer to different things. Although there may be some overlap in the characteristics of these conditions, it is important to understand the differences between them in order to provide appropriate support and care to individuals who have these disabilities.What is Intellectual Disability?
Intellectual disability is a term used to describe a condition in which an individual has significant limitations in intellectual functioning and adaptive behaviors. Intellectual functioning refers to a person’s ability to learn, reason, problem-solve, and understand complex ideas. Adaptive behaviors refer to a person’s ability to perform daily activities such as dressing, eating, and communicating effectivmedicely.
Intellectual disability is typically diagnosed in childhood and is characterized by an IQ score of 70 or below, as well as deficits in adaptive behavior. The severity of intellectual disability can vary widely, with some individuals having mild limitations and others having more severe limitations.
Causes of Intellectual Disability − Intellectual disability can have a variety of causes, including genetic conditions such as Down syndrome, prenatal exposure to alcohol or drugs, traumatic brain injury, infections or illnesses that affect the brain, and environmental factors such as malnutrition or exposure to toxins.
Treatment and Support for Intellectual Disability − There is no cure for intellectual disability, but early intervention and support can help individuals with this condition to achieve their full potential. Treatment may include educational interventions such as special education programs, speech therapy, occupational therapy, and behavioral therapy. In addition, individuals with intellectual disability may benefit from assistive technology and other accommodations that can help them to overcome their limitations.What is Developmental Disability?
Developmental disability is a term used to describe a broad range of conditions that affect the development of the brain and nervous system. These conditions can affect a person’s cognitive, social, and physical development, and may result in delays or difficulties in learning, communication, and daily living skills.
Developmental disabilities can be caused by a variety of factors, including genetic conditions, prenatal exposure to toxins or infections, complications during childbirth, and traumatic brain injury. The severity of developmental disabilities can vary widely, with some individuals having mild delays or difficulties and others having more severe impairments.
Types of Developmental Disabilities − There are many different types of developmental disabilities, including autism spectrum disorder, cerebral palsy, attention deficit hyperactivity disorder (ADHD), and learning disabilities. Each of these conditions has its own unique set of characteristics and symptoms, but they all share a common feature of affecting a person’s development.
Treatment and Support for Developmental Disability − Like intellectual disability, there is no cure for developmental disability, but early intervention and support can help individuals to manage their symptoms and achieve their full potential. Treatment may include educational interventions such as special education programs, speech therapy, occupational therapy, and behavioral therapy. In addition, individuals with developmental disabilities may benefit from assistive technology and other accommodations that can help them to overcome their limitations.Differences: Intellectual Disability and Developmental Disability
The main difference between intellectual disability and developmental disability is that intellectual disability specifically refers to limitations in intellectual functioning and adaptive behavior, while developmental disability refers to a broader range of conditions that affect a person’s development.
Another difference between the two conditions is that intellectual disability is typically diagnosed based on an IQ score of 70 or below, while developmental disability may not have a specific diagnostic criteria. Instead, developmental disability is often diagnosed based on a range of symptoms and characteristics that are present in the individual.
The following table highlights the major differences between Intellectual Disability and Developmental Disability −
Intellectual disability is specifically focused on one disorder which is concerned with intellectual and adaptive functioning.
Developmental disability has a wider scope as it includes various syndromes, congenital blindness, as well as intellectual disability.
The DSM 5 particularly points out “intellectual disability” as one of the disorders under “neurodevelopmental disorders”.
The term “developmental disability” was not even mentioned; in fact, the closest term is “Global Developmental Delay” which is the diagnosis given to children who are younger than five years old who do not meet several developmental milestones.
However, basing on the definition of developmental disability, this encompasses all the disorders under neurodevelopmental disorders and other disorders of childhood and adolescence which include Autism Spectrum Disorder, Attention-Deficit/Hyperactivity Disorder, Specific Learning Disorder, Intellectual Disability, and Disruptive Mood Dysregulation Disorder.
Population (United States)
Around 6.5 million of Americans have intellectual disability.
Around 200 million of Americans have developmental disabilities.
Individuals with intellectual disability are often categorized according to their severity: mild, moderate, severe, profound.
Those with developmental disability are usually categorized according to their specific disorders, syndromes, or impairments such as hearing, vision, cognitive, ambulatory, self-care, and independent living.
Age of Onset
The age of onset of intellectual disability as per diagnostic criteria is during childhood, specifically before 18 years old.
As for developmental disability, such manifestations should be observed before 22 years old.
Intellectual disability does not include physical disabilities in its criteria.
Developmental disability encompasses physical disabilities such as vision, hearing, speech, and motor disabilities.
Risk Factors/ Causes
The common causes for intellectual disability include genetic conditions (fragile X syndrome, Down syndrome, Turner’s syndrome, etc.), teratogens (drug use, malnutrition, radiation, illness, etc.), and brain trauma or infections (meningitis, head injury, etc.).
It is also important to note that more than half of intellectual disability cases have unknown causes.
As for developmental disability, its scope is wider; hence, its risk factors and causes include those of intellectual disability as well as other factors like childhood accidents, age of mother during pregnancy, lead poisoning, RH blood disease, infectious diseases, heritability, birth and newborn complications.
Many developmental disability cases have also unknown specific causes.Conclusion
In summary, intellectual disability and developmental disability are two terms that are often used interchangeably, but they actually refer to different things. While both conditions can have a significant impact on an individual’s life, it is important to understand the differences between them in order to provide appropriate support and care.
This article was published as a part of the Data Science BlogathonOverview Important Definitions
The most significant part of the database is its tables, which contain all of the data. Normally, data would be divided among several tables rather than being saved all in one location (so designing the data structure properly is very important). The majority of this script would deal with table manipulation. Aside from tables, there are a few more extremely helpful concepts/features that we will not discuss:
inserting/updating data in the database
functions – takes a value as an input and returns a value that has been manipulated (for example function that remove white spaces)#Improts import numpy as np # linear algebra import pandas as pd # data processing, CSV file I/O (e.g. pd.read_csv) import sqlite3 import matplotlib.pyplot as plt # Load data from database.sqlite database = 'database.sqlite' We’ll start by connecting to the database and seeing what tables we have.
The query’s basic structure is straightforward: After the SELECT, you specify what you wish to see; * denotes all possible columns. Following the FROM, you select the table. After the WHERE, you add the conditions for the data you wish to use from the table(s).
The section’s structure and order of content, with spaces, new lines, capital letters, and indentation to make the code easier to understand.conn = sqlite3.connect(database) tables = pd.read_sql("""SELECT * FROM sqlite_master WHERE type='table';""", conn) tables List of countries
This is the most basic query. The only must part of a query is the SELECT and the FROM (assuming you want to pull from a table)countries = pd.read_sql("""SELECT * FROM Country;""", conn) countries List of leagues and their country
When joining tables, you must do the following:
Choose the type of join you want to utilize. The following are the most common:
INNER JOIN – only maintain records in both tables that match the criterion (after the ON), and records from both tables that don’t match won’t appear in the output.
LEFT JOIN – all values from the first (left) table are combined with the matching rows from the right table. NULL values would be assigned to the columns from the right table that doesn’t have a corresponding value in the left table.
Specify the common value that will be used to link the tables together (the id of the country in that case).
Ensure that at least one of the values in the table is a key. It’s the chúng tôi in our case. Because there can be more than one league in the same nation, the League.country id is not unique.leagues = pd.read_sql("""SELECT * FROM League JOIN Country ON chúng tôi = League.country_id;""", conn) leagues List of teams
ORDER BY defines the sorting of the output – ascending or descending (DESC)
LIMIT limits the number of rows in the output – after the sortingteams = pd.read_sql("""SELECT * FROM Team ORDER BY team_long_name LIMIT 10;""", conn) teams
We’ll just show the columns that interest us in this example, so instead of *, we’ll use the actual names.
The names of several of the cells are the same (Country.name, League.name). We’ll use AS to rename them.
This query, as you can see, includes a lot more joins. The reason for this is that the database is designed in a star structure, with one table (Match) containing all of the “performance” and metrics, but only keys and IDs, and other tables including all of the descriptive information (Country, League, Team)
It’s important to note that the Team is joined twice. This is a hard one because, despite the fact that we are using the same table name, we are bringing two separate copies (and rename them using AS). The reason for this is that we need to bring data for two separate values (home team API id and away team API id), and joining them to the same database would imply that they are equal.
It’s also worth noting that the Team tables are linked together using a left join. The reason for this is that I’ve decided to keep the matches in the output, even if one of the teams isn’t on the Team table.
ORDER comes before LIMIT and after WHERE and determines the output order.detailed_matches = pd.read_sql("""SELECT chúng tôi chúng tôi AS country_name, chúng tôi AS league_name, season, stage, date, HT.team_long_name AS home_team, AT.team_long_name AS away_team, home_team_goal, away_team_goal FROM Match JOIN Country on chúng tôi = Match.country_id JOIN League on chúng tôi = Match.league_id LEFT JOIN Team AS HT on HT.team_api_id = Match.home_team_api_id LEFT JOIN Team AS AT on AT.team_api_id = Match.away_team_api_id WHERE country_name = 'Spain' ORDER by date LIMIT 10;""", conn) detailed_matches Let’s do some basic analytics
Here we are starting to look at the data at a more aggregated level. Instead of looking at the raw data, we will start to group it to the different levels we want to examine. In this example, process the previous query, remove the match and date information, and look at it at the country league season level.
The functionality we will use for that is GROUP BY, which comes between the WHERE and ORDER
Once you chose what level you want to analyze, we can decide the select statement into two:
Dimensions are the values we’re describing, and they’re the same ones we’ll group by later.
Metrics must be grouped together using functions. sum(), count(), count(distinct), avg(), min(), and max() are some of the most common functions.
It’s critical to use the same dimensions in both the select and the GROUP BY functions. Otherwise, the output could be incorrect.
HAVING is another feature that can be used after grouping. This adds another layer of data filtering, this time using the table’s output after grouping. It’s frequently used to clean the output.leages_by_season = pd.read_sql("""SELECT chúng tôi AS country_name, chúng tôi AS league_name, season, count(distinct stage) AS number_of_stages, count(distinct HT.team_long_name) AS number_of_teams, avg(home_team_goal) AS avg_home_team_scors, avg(away_team_goal) AS avg_away_team_goals, avg(home_team_goal-away_team_goal) AS avg_goal_dif, avg(home_team_goal+away_team_goal) AS avg_goals, sum(home_team_goal+away_team_goal) AS total_goals FROM Match JOIN Country on chúng tôi = Match.country_id JOIN League on chúng tôi = Match.league_id LEFT JOIN Team AS HT on HT.team_api_id = Match.home_team_api_id LEFT JOIN Team AS AT on AT.team_api_id = Match.away_team_api_id WHERE country_name in ('Spain', 'Germany', 'France', 'Italy', 'England') GROUP BY Country.name, League.name, season ORDER BY Country.name, League.name, season DESC ;""", conn) leages_by_season df = pd.DataFrame(index=np.sort(leages_by_season['season'].unique()), columns=leages_by_season['country_name'].unique()) df.loc[:,'Germany'] = list(leages_by_season.loc[leages_by_season['country_name']=='Germany','avg_goals']) df.loc[:,'Spain'] = list(leages_by_season.loc[leages_by_season['country_name']=='Spain','avg_goals']) df.loc[:,'France'] = list(leages_by_season.loc[leages_by_season['country_name']=='France','avg_goals']) df.loc[:,'Italy'] = list(leages_by_season.loc[leages_by_season['country_name']=='Italy','avg_goals']) df.loc[:,'England'] = list(leages_by_season.loc[leages_by_season['country_name']=='England','avg_goals']) df.plot(figsize=(12,5),title='Average Goals per Game Over Time') df = pd.DataFrame(index=np.sort(leages_by_season['season'].unique()), columns=leages_by_season['country_name'].unique()) df.loc[:,'Germany'] = list(leages_by_season.loc[leages_by_season['country_name']=='Germany','avg_goal_dif']) df.loc[:,'Spain'] = list(leages_by_season.loc[leages_by_season['country_name']=='Spain','avg_goal_dif']) df.loc[:,'France'] = list(leages_by_season.loc[leages_by_season['country_name']=='France','avg_goal_dif']) df.loc[:,'Italy'] = list(leages_by_season.loc[leages_by_season['country_name']=='Italy','avg_goal_dif']) df.loc[:,'England'] = list(leages_by_season.loc[leages_by_season['country_name']=='England','avg_goal_dif']) df.plot(figsize=(12,5),title='Average Goals Difference Home vs Out') Query Run Order
Now that we are familiar with most of the functionalities being used in a query, it is very important to understand the order that code runs.
First, order of how we write it (reminder):
Define which tables will be used and how they will be connected (FROM + JOIN).
Only the rows that apply to the conditions should be kept (WHERE)
Sort the information by the required level (if need) (BY GROUP)
Select the data you wish to include in the new table. It can contain only raw data (if there is no grouping), or a combination of dimensions (from the grouping), as well as metrics. You’ve decided to show the following from the table.
Order the new table’s output (ORDER BY)
Add extra filtering conditions to the newly generated table (HAVING)
Limit the number of rows – this would reduce the number of rows, as well as the need for filtering (LIMIT)Sub Queries and Functions
Use a subquery as a solution. The attributes database would need to be grouped to a different key-player level only (without season). Of course, we would need to decide first how we would want to combine all the attributes to a single row. use AVG, also one can decide on maximum, latest season and etc. Once both tables have the same keys, we can join them together (think of the subquery like any other table, only temporal), knowing that we won’t have duplicated rows after the join.
You can also see two examples of how to use functions here:
– A conditional function is an important tool for data manipulation. While the IF statement is widely used in other languages, SQLite does not support it, hence CASE + WHEN + ELSE is used instead. As you can see, the query would return varied results depending on the data input.
– ROUND – straightforward. Every SQL language comes with a lot of useful functions by default.players_height = pd.read_sql("""SELECT CASE WHEN ROUND(height)<165 then 165 ELSE ROUND(height) END AS calc_height, COUNT(height) AS distribution, (avg(PA_Grouped.avg_overall_rating)) AS avg_overall_rating, (avg(PA_Grouped.avg_potential)) AS avg_potential, AVG(weight) AS avg_weight FROM PLAYER LEFT JOIN (SELECT Player_Attributes.player_api_id, avg(Player_Attributes.overall_rating) AS avg_overall_rating, avg(Player_Attributes.potential) AS avg_potential FROM Player_Attributes GROUP BY Player_Attributes.player_api_id) AS PA_Grouped ON PLAYER.player_api_id = PA_Grouped.player_api_id GROUP BY calc_height ORDER BY calc_height ;""", conn) players_height players_height.plot(figsize=(12,5)) EndNote About the Author
Connect with me on Github
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Throughout the years, the cryptocurrency market has gathered a lot of momentum and investors’ attention from all over the world. Crypto investments are gaining traction as digital assets gain prominence. But, especially for newcomers, investing in cryptocurrencies can be rather difficult. There are more than 22,000 cryptocurrencies available for trading as of February 2023. Not to forget how volatile the cryptocurrency market is. It is indeed crucial to do proper research and refer to a guide who wishes to invest before entering the world of cryptocurrencies.
Understand Cryptocurrencies- It is essential to have a firm grasp of what cryptocurrency is before stepping foot into the realm of cryptocurrency investment. A digital or virtual currency secured by cryptography referred known as cryptocurrency, makes it nearly impossible to forge or double spend. Cryptocurrencies, as opposed to conventional money, are decentralized, meaning they run without the assistance of a central authority or financial institution. There are many other kinds of cryptocurrencies available, with Bitcoin being the most well-known. Ethereum, Litecoin, and Ripple are a few other well-liked cryptocurrencies. Before making an investment in a cryptocurrency, it is crucial to comprehend its fundamentals and features.
Conducting Research- Investing in cryptocurrency is a long-term investment, and it is vital to conduct thorough research before investing in any digital asset. This research involves studying the market trends, the cryptocurrency’s history, and the project’s development team. Researching the market trends will give you an idea of the cryptocurrency’s performance over time while studying the cryptocurrency’s history will give you insight into the project’s viability. Investors should also research the development team responsible for the project. The team’s credentials, experience, and vision will give you an idea of the project’s potential for success. It is crucial to invest in a project with a strong development team with a proven track record.
Choosing the Right Cryptocurrency Exchange- Cryptocurrency exchanges are platforms that allow users to buy, sell, and trade cryptocurrencies. It is crucial to choose the right cryptocurrency exchange to invest in cryptocurrency. Some of the popular cryptocurrency exchanges include Coinbase, Binance, Kraken, and Bitfinex. When selecting a cryptocurrency exchange, it is essential to consider factors such as fees, security, and user interface. Fees are the charges imposed by the cryptocurrency exchange for using their platform. Security is another critical factor to consider when selecting a cryptocurrency exchange. The exchange should have robust security measures to prevent hacking and other cybersecurity threats. Lastly, the user interface should be user-friendly, making it easy for investors to navigate the platform.
Creating a Cryptocurrency Wallet- A cryptocurrency wallet is a digital wallet used to store cryptocurrencies. Cryptocurrency wallets come in two types, hot wallets, and cold wallets. Hot wallets are connected to the internet and are used for quick and easy access to cryptocurrencies. Cold wallets, on the other hand, are offline wallets and are used for long-term storage. Investors must choose the right cryptocurrency wallet to store their digital assets. Some of the popular cryptocurrency wallets include Trezor, Ledger Nano S, and MyEtherWallet. When selecting a cryptocurrency wallet, it is essential to consider factors such as security, user-friendliness, and supported cryptocurrencies.
Investing in Cryptocurrency- Investing in cryptocurrency requires a long-term investment strategy. The volatility of cryptocurrency markets means that the value of digital assets can fluctuate rapidly. As such, it is essential to invest in a cryptocurrency that you believe in and that has a strong potential for long-term growth.
Dollar-cost averaging is a popular investment strategy used in cryptocurrency investment. Dollar-cost averaging involves buying small amounts of a cryptocurrency over a set period, instead of investing a lump sum at once. This strategy helps reduce the impact of market volatility on the investment.
Diversifying Your Portfolio- Diversification is a critical investment strategy used in cryptocurrency investment. Diversification involves investing in multiple cryptocurrencies to spread the investment risk. This strategy helps reduce the risk of loss in case one cryptocurrency underperformance.
Just about anyone can write content.
But writing content that resonates with your audience and has an impact on your bottom line? That’s a much harder task.
The good news is that you can create engaging articles, emails, landing pages, and copy that will achieve business goals and deliver on its promise to your readers at the same time.
We’ll take you through seven top tips for writing impactful content in 2023.
Download the Semrush Content Writing Workbook – get unique insights from the key industry experts.1. Start with Your Goals
No matter how skilled a content writer or creator you are, if you don’t have a clear set of objectives, you’re bound to fail.
Firstly, without goals, you have nothing to measure your success. You also have no direction.
We recommend using SMART objectives to kickstart your content marketing plan – that is, your goals should be specific, measurable, achievable, relevant, and time-bound.
To ensure they are, answer the following questions with your team:
What do you need to achieve and by when?
How will you measure your success?
Can you do it with your current resources?
Does it further your main business objectives?2. Get to Know Your Audience
When does a room full of strangers become an audience? When they all sit up and take notice of the person talking.
To get people’s attention, you not only need to know their common questions and concerns, but you also need to speak directly to them. This means filtering people out as much as it means targeting them.
As the old adage goes, if you try to please everyone, you please no one.
So how do you ensure your message is broad enough to appeal to a wide market, yet specific enough to appeal to individuals?
That’s where buyer personas come in. In content marketing, these descriptive profiles segment and describe your ideal readership (which is likely a wider market than your potential clients).
Buyer personas incorporate a range of crucial information. In content marketing, aside from the usual demographic and background information, you’ll probably be most focused on:
Their goals and obstacles.
How they see your product and your competitors’ products.
The questions they have relating to their challenges and your solution.
The content formats and channels they prefer.
Broader topics and themes they are interested in.
The most important thing about buyer personas is to make sure that they genuinely reflect your readers.
Be aware, if you invent these profiles or they contain inaccurate information, they can cause your content marketing team to make mistakes. Check out the following possible data sources:
Internal customer databases.
Third-party analytics tools.
Onboarding or exit interviews.
Sales or customer service knowledge.
Once you know what each of your buyer personas looks like, you’ll be able to fine-tune your messaging and create content for each customer segment.3. Grab Your Reader’s Attention
The most important part of any article?
The same goes for a compelling email subject line. Without one and your newsletter will be left unread.
There are whole master classes dedicated to writing great headlines and subject lines, but a few well-aimed tips can wipe years of hard trial and error off your plate:
Controversy, questions, humor, shock-and-awe, contrast, uniqueness, and emotion are all big attention-grabbers in headlines. But also note that numbered lists outperform regular titles. In fact, according to our research, they get 80% more traffic.
At the same time, your H1 must be descriptive of the content – and unique. Not only will the content be clear to the reader, but to Google too. Ultimately, articles and guides that deliver on the headline get a higher quality score than content that does not.
But it’s not only about headlines. Don’t forget images. Make sure to select photos or illustrations that stop the thumbs on social media. Without a picture to tell your story to, you’ll go unnoticed.
Read more in the Semrush content strategy guide.4. Keep Your Audience’s Attention
So they’ve opened your article, your landing page, or your email. The question is, can your writing skills keep them there?
Your content should always focus on providing valuable, relevant content to a reader. The rest of your job is optimizing that content for readability, originality, usefulness, and even shareability.
So how do you keep someone interested?
Before you start writing something for someone, imagine they are sitting across the table from you.
What do they want to know?
What are their questions, doubts, objections, or misconceptions?
Your buyer personas will be seriously useful now. Write these ideas as bullet points and focus your attention on writing an outline that’s for them – and not for anyone else. By keeping their needs in mind, your message will chime loudly.
And remember, while longer posts do tend to outperform shorter ones, your goal is not to write a novel. Rather, it’s to produce a comprehensive, valuable piece. Do aim for quality content over quantity and let the topic dictate the length of your writing.
Finally, think about what you want your reader to do once they’ve finished your piece. Do you want them to sign up to a reading list, download a guide, or head over to your eeommerce store?
Your calls to action (CTAs) should be clear, consistent, and concise throughout each piece of content. Add too many of them and you will have a hard time measuring your content’s success.
Discover the Semrush Content Writing Workbook5. Optimize Your Content for Search Engines
SEO is about making your content available to your readers and achieving the goals you set out in your marketing plan.Before Writing
Line up your keywords. Look for primary keywords with a low difficulty rating and a decent search volume. But don’t get blinded by the numbers. It’s not what your readers are looking for, it’s why that’s important.
Plug your keywords into Google and see what comes out. Google’s nifty algorithm will take a best-guess at why the searcher is browsing and thereby help you understand the search intent:
Are they looking for topic information?
Do they want to find a website?
Are they comparing products to buy?
Or do they have their credit cards out ready to purchase right now?
The results Google delivers will give you a clearer picture of the type of content you should be producing for your particular keyword.When Writing
Use a range of title tags (H2, H3, and H4) to structure your content. More than half of the posts with a complex structure (H2+H3+H4) are high-performing, according to our research.
Add value to your audience and give your SEO a boost by linking to other content on your site, using keywords to describe the links. Also, note that any images you include should include alt text for accessibility and SEO.After Writing
Next, you need to write a meta title, using your primary keyword. While it needs to be optimized for search engines, it also needs to be appealing to real people. So, keep it short and sweet (under 60 characters).
Your URL should also include the primary keyword – remove stop words (to, the, a, in, etc.) to keep it concise.
Pro tip: make sure to run regular content audits as a part of your content marketing efforts. They help you discover high and low-performing content and identify pieces that need an update.
Download the 2023 SEO Writing Checklist to Optimize Your Content6. Strike the Right Tone of Voice
According to our recent research, 78% of the high-scoring and well-optimized texts are consistent with their tone of voice. But what exactly does it mean, and why is it important?
Maintaining your tone of voice is all about finding the right way to communicate with your audiences. Speak to your Grandma as you speak to your managing director and she’ll clip you round the ear (and maybe vice versa). Our tone of voice changes with the situation, who our audiences are, who we are, and what we need to achieve.
The same goes for our buyer personas. We need to talk to individuals, so we also need to shift how we speak to them.
The question is, how do you maintain a consistent brand voice at the same time?
Brand tone of voice helps define your brand personality. More to the point, the way your brand speaks through its content impacts the way people relate to you.
Despite the tweaks we make when speaking to Grandma or the boss, ultimately we are recognizably ourselves. Your brand should take the same approach to content creation and define a personality that can be flexible, yet consistent.
Ask your team to chip in. Together define what you sound like now and what you’d like to sound like in the future.7. Take Care of the Readability
The same factors that govern the substance of your content also determine your text’s target readability.
Are you writing for college professors, business people, or people who are booking a vacation? In online marketing, the complexity, length, style, and content all depend on your audience and their immediate goals.
Semrush determines readability by averaging sentence length and complexity, vocabulary choice, and overall text length. The platform then compares your content to your top ten Google competitors to give you a target readability score.A Look at the Semrush SEO Writing Assistant
Tone: The SEO Writing Assistant will highlight whether your text is casual, neutral, formal, or somewhere in between. It will also provide a consistency score and pinpoint sentences you can update to improve it.
SEO: Based on your target keywords and an aggregate of your top 10 competitors, the assistant will give you a score out of 10 and give you keyword suggestions for the semantically related keywords to reinforce your copy, as well as link, title, and alt tags suggestions.
Readability: You’ll receive a score out of 10. This is based on your target readability score, comparing your content to your top competitors. You’ll also get suggestions on how to fix any content issues your text might have.
Originality: Avoid plagiarism (accidental or otherwise) with the originality check.
The tool works seamlessly within Google Docs, Semrush, and via WordPress.Next steps
To optimize your copywriting for engagement, conversion, and SEO, download the Semrush Content Writing Workbook (includes tips from the leading content marketing experts and interactive assignments).
By considering what students need to know, their interests, and how learning will be assessed, teachers can differentiate assignments.
Differentiating for the needs of all learners is an important focus that many teachers across the world share. We want our students to have a year-plus growth in courses, whether they’re struggling with core basics, are just at the appropriate skill level, or have understanding that exceeds the learning outcomes of the curriculum. These are the key elements to consider in differentiating instruction:
Planning: Content, processes, and products
Learner access: Readiness, interests, and learning preferences
Much has been written to help teachers think about and provide differentiated experiences for learners that align and explain these elements. However, the question and challenge that I hear and observe from teachers most often is: how do we effectively plan intentional differentiation that we can implement and evaluate with the same confidence and understanding as traditional lessons? The answer that follows is based on a change in how to use the planning elements—content, processes, and products—for differentiation, which is finding traction in classrooms that are using this approach.
A Three-Pronged Approach to Planning for Differentiation
Part 1: Content. Content is what students need to know, understand, and do something with. When identifying these outcomes, we also shape the assessment(s) by how learners can demonstrate what they understand. Success comes from teachers accomplishing two steps for this task.
First, identify the specific skills and concepts that students must achieve. This is what gets measured and analyzed through a variety of assessments. Unpacking the skills and concepts enables teachers to track student learning progress for areas of additional support for learners with significant gaps and learners who are ready for complexity beyond the content expectations of the lesson. This understanding enables teachers, instructional coaches, and supervisors to be on the same page as to what students need to learn through intentional differentiation.
Second, collect data on what the students bring to the focused content. Sometimes, this step is viewed as finding strategies for planning differentiation. That is a mistake. Meeting learner needs means knowing what opportunities they bring to the lesson based on what they already know and what challenges exist, based on gaps in core areas of need. Examples of student data to collect prior to planning include life experiences and interests outside of school and academic skills. Using strategies like K-W-L charts or need to knows is one way to find out what learners already know about the topic. Their level of understanding of the content should be factored into the planning. No student feels engaged with a lesson or session that delivers content they have long since mastered. This stage of planning also helps to confirm gaps in knowledge.
Educators should collect information about students’ interests and passions that may relate to, or give them background for, applications of the content. This data can lead to rich learning experiences, such as providing informational text to read and analyze from articles about sports or Minecraft if many students identify those as areas of interest.
Accomplishing these two steps helps to ensure that the educators feel well prepared about the specific curriculum expectations at a targeted level. It also ensures that teachers are fully aware of what students bring to the content in terms of opportunities and areas of challenge.
Part 2: Processes. Process is about the different ways that students make sense of the content. Students need frequent experiences of sense-making through a variety of different ways and opportunities. Teachers make this happen through lessons that are made up of a series of activities.
Differentiation through processes is applied in one or more of these activities that make up the lesson. Teachers might start with differentiating one activity. As confidence and experience grows, most lesson activities can be differentiated. The focus of intentional differentiation for process is based on students’ content opportunities and challenges. It also incorporates at least one of the learner access elements: readiness, interests, and learning preferences.
Here are two examples.
English: Using details in writing through learning centers. Each center focuses on a different type of detail strategy: example, facts, and sensory detail. Each center includes two options and students choose one to complete.
Math: Understanding the parts and functions of fractions through think dots. Students are put into groups based on their readiness skill level to complete a tiered activity where they all must complete the focus skills. Each group collaborates to solve the six tasks in a random order of choice.
Part 3: Products. Products are the artifacts that students create to show what they know and do not know. These products vary in format both small and large, such as quizzes, reflections, discussions, multimedia, social media tools, and performance tasks.
Intentional differentiation is based on how to leverage what’s known about students’ content opportunities and challenges. Also, use at least one of the learner access elements: readiness, interests, and learning preferences. These experiences range from practice to learn to assessment checks on progress. There is much flexibility to provide learners with a range of opportunities and experiences to help them make connections and extend their learning while maintaining the content focus.
Driving Forward With Differentiation
Explore this approach for reflecting and planning for students’ needs through differentiation. Using content, processes, and products as planning steps provides a clear and concise approach toward choosing strategies and activities based on learner needs that align with the lesson outcomes. This resource curation portal offers ideas to build into your plan, and this differentiation guide offers more insights and a differentiation planning criteria checklist to start your planning journey.
This structure not only empowers student learning but also gives educators common language for collaborative professional opportunities to discuss, implement, and build stronger experiences that meet the needs of all their learners.
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