GMAT Sample Argument Essay Score 5 AWA: The Mercury

The announcement by a publisher in The Mercury, a weekly newspaper, seek to raise awareness about the current situation of the firm and provide a recommendation to rectify the current crisis. The publisher states that The Mercury has seen a decline in readership by 10,000 readers, and attributes the lowered popularity to its competitor’s pricing. The author states that low price of The Bugle is reason for the newspaper’s success and recommends The Mercury to follow in their steps. The reasoning of the publisher fails to provide a substantive case to support the recommendation.

First off, the publisher assumes that The Mercury’s decline in readership is a result of The Bugle’s low price. However, there is no evidence to support this theory, since no statistical evidence about the competitor’s overtime popularity. It is very possible that The Bugle could be facing the same issues, due to a decrease in readership of newspapers in general. The shift to other mediums, such as the internet, could be the real reason behind the lowered readership. The publisher has failed to take other mediums of getting news, which are considerably faster than a weekly newspaper, into account. Hence, the assumption of the lowered popularity due to The Bugle or the expensive price is just an assumption based on little evidence.

Secondly, the publisher claims that the reduction in price would lead to an increase in circulation, and in return, advertiser. However, reducing the price could have the opposite effect. Readers and advertisers might see the price reduction as a degradation of standards, and might lose interest. Cheaper is usually associated with cheaper in price and quality, a trait that The Mercury would not benefit from. Thus, reduction in price would probably be damning for the newspaper, rather than a profitable strategy.

In addition, advertisers in particular don’t simply sell us their adverts just for random max exposure to the public. Many advertisers prefer to advertise in newspapers that cater to their niche audience that represent their target market. More circulation dilutes the niches a newspaper can cater to, making it less appealing for major advertisers that would go for smaller newspapers that still match their customer profiles.

The publisher gives the impression that by simply increasing their circulation, advertisers and success would come knocking after, but provides little factual research to validate their proposal as beneficial. A more in-depth research into the newspaper niche and the audience The Mercury caters to, would help identify the problems the company faces. Only after the source of the problems are identify, can be company come up with a strategy to battle its lowered readership. However, as it stands, the publisher does not provide a convincing argument and further research is needed before any decisions regarding price are made.

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