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Communication Chapter 7 Research, Action, Communication, Evaluation Communication follows Research and Program Planning (Action) in the public relations process ... – PowerPoint PPT presentation

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Title: Communication

  • Chapter 7

Research, Action, Communication, Evaluation
  • Communication follows Research and Program
    Planning (Action) in the public relations process
  • Communication is the process by which objectives
    are achieved
  • Strategies and tactics may include news releases,
    news conferences, speeches, special events,
    brochures, newsletters, rallies, posters, bumper
    stickers, webcasts

To be an Effective PR Communicator
  • it is important to have an understanding of
  • What constitutes communication and how people
    receive messages
  • How people process information and change their
  • What kind of media and communication tools are
    most appropriate for a particular message

Categories of Media/Comm Tools
  • Kirk Hallahan, a Colorado State communication
    theorist, lists five categories of media and
    communication toolsand strengths and weaknesses
    of each (Table, p.172)
  • Public Medianewspapers, magazines, radio, TV
  • Interactive Mediacomputer based WWW, e-mail,
    listserves, chat rooms, bulletin boards
  • Controlled Mediabrochures, newsletters,
    sponsored magazines, annual reports, direct mail,
    video brochures
  • Events/Groupsspeeches, trade shows, exhibits,
    meetings, conferences, sponsorships,
  • One-on-Onepersonal visits, lobbying, personal
    letters and phone calls, telemarketing

Communication Objectives
  • While selecting the above tools, communicators
    should determine exactly what objective is being
    sought through the communication. James Grunig,
    University of Maryland PR professor, lists five
    possible objectives
  • Message exposuregetting message out via the mass
    media, controlled media, and other forms
    intended audiences are exposed to the message in
    various forms
  • Accurate dissemination of the messagethe basic
    information, often filtered by media gatekeepers,
    remains intact
  • Acceptance of the messagethe audience not only
    retains the message, but accepts it as valid
  • Attitude changethe audience not only believes
    the message, but makes a verbal or mental
    commitment to change behavior as a result of the
  • Change in overt behaviormembers of the audience
    actually change their current behavior or
    purchase the product and use it
  • (The first two outcomes are much easier to
    achieve than the last three. Many other factors
    must come in to play to achieve the last three
    such as predisposition to the message, peer
    reinforcement, feasibility of the suggested
    action and environmental context, for example)

Understanding the Message
  • Communication can take place only if the sender
    and receiver have a common understanding of the
    symbols being used. This requires
  • Effective use of language
  • Writing for clarity
  • Effective use of symbols, acronyms, and slogans
  • Avoiding jargon, clichés, and hype wordsmedia
    gatekeepers and the general public are turned off
    by (and may not understand) technical and
    bureaucratic language (jargon).
  • Clichés and excessive hype can undermine the
    credibility of the message. Note list of hype
    words on page 182.

Also avoid euphemisms
  • A euphemism is an offensive word or phrase that
    is less direct and less distasteful than the one
    that represents reality.
  • Avoid doublespeak words that pretend to
    communicate but really do not examples ethnic
    cleansing and collateral damage
  • Examples used cards as preowned cars layoffs
    or firings as downsizing hunting as
  • Such language can breed suspicion, cynicism,
    distrust, and, ultimately hostility.

Avoid discriminatory language
  • In todays world, effective communication also
    means nondiscriminatory communication.
  • PR personnel should double-check every message to
    eliminate undesirable gender, racial, and ethnic
  • Examples manpower is now personnel, workers,
    or employees. Manmade is now artificial or
    synthetic. Firemen are firefighters
    stewardesses are flight attendants and fisherman
    are just fishers.

Believing, remembering, actingon the message
  • Believing the Message
  • The importance of source credibility
  • Do audience members perceive the source as
    knowledgeable and expert on the subject?
  • Do they perceive the source as honest and
    objective or as representing a special interest?
  • Audiences, for example, give lower credibility to
    statements made in advertising than to the same
    information contained in a news article, because
    news articles are selected and checked out by
    media gatekeepers
  • Remembering the Message
  • The importance of repetition
  • Not all audience members see or hear message at
    same time
  • Reminds the audience so less chance of
  • Can lead to improved learning penetrate

Acting on the MessageThe Five-Stage Adoption
  • Getting people to act on a message is not a
    simple process. A key to this is understanding
    the adoption process
  • Awarenessa person becomes aware of an idea or
    new product, often through an ad, news story or
  • Interestperson seeks more information perhaps by
    picking up a pamphlet, ordering a brochure, or
    reading an in-depth article in a newspaper,
    magazine, or on-line
  • Evaluationhow the product or idea meet a
    persons specific needs and wants? Feedback from
    friends and family is part of this process
  • Trialtrying the product or idea on an
    experimental basis by using a sample, witnessing
    a demonstration, or making qualifying statements
    such as, I read
  • Adoptionperson begins to use the product on a
    regular basis or integrates the idea into his or
    her belief system

Which One Are You? Research shows people
approach innovation in different ways depending
on personality traits and the risk involved
  • InnovatorsAdventuresome and eager to try new
  • Early AdoptersSavvy individuals who keep up with
    new ideas/products, often the opinion leaders for
    their friends and colleagues
  • Early MajorityTake a deliberate, pragmatic
    approach to adopting ideas
  • Late MajorityOften skeptical and somewhat
    resistant but bow to peer pressure
  • LaggardsVery traditional and the last group to
    adopt a new idea or product