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Public Opinion and Persuasion: Lecture 1


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First and introductory lecture for POP, second year unit on the BA (Hons) Public Relations unit

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Public Opinion and Persuasion: Lecture 1

  1. 1. Persuasion & Public Opinion Lecture 1 Introduction
  2. 2. PR & Persuasion <ul><li>PR provides the public a window onto a part of the world outside </li></ul><ul><li>It shapes our emotional responses towards brands and individuals </li></ul><ul><li>It persuades us to adopt attitudes and behaviours </li></ul><ul><li>Persuasion is strategic & scientific </li></ul>
  3. 3. Persuasion is Personal <ul><li>We decide whose communication we ‘let in’ to our psyche </li></ul><ul><li>We decide who is credible </li></ul><ul><ul><li>We create our own benchmarks </li></ul></ul><ul><li>We decide whether we are convinced </li></ul><ul><li>We determine our own behaviours </li></ul><ul><li>We are persuaded everyday </li></ul>
  4. 4. <ul><li>Clear effects here: </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Partisanship! </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Specific phrases </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Body language </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Facial expressions </li></ul></ul>
  5. 5. Publics & Communication <ul><li>Who </li></ul><ul><li>What </li></ul><ul><li>Where </li></ul><ul><li>To </li></ul><ul><li>With What effect </li></ul>
  6. 6. Persuasion <ul><li>Interpersonal </li></ul><ul><li>The power of force (Coercion) </li></ul><ul><li>The power of suggestion </li></ul><ul><li>The creation of norms </li></ul><ul><li>Fundamentally, persuasion is making someone do something without duress </li></ul>
  7. 7. Persuasion is all around
  8. 8. Searching for the right approach 1
  9. 9. Searching for the right approach 2 <ul><li>Oz: Well its only pooftas and the like that get that </li></ul><ul><li>Denis: No man, its like every sexually transmitted disease, you gotta wear a condom. </li></ul>
  10. 10. A changing climate
  11. 11. The Aids Campaign
  12. 12. <ul><li>Though perhaps overly dramatised, the narrative provides a window into the world of an HIV+ man: </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Misunderstandings </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>The possible reactions (pity and fear) </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>The difficulty in revealing infection </li></ul></ul>
  13. 13. Persuasion & Public Opinion <ul><li>We use persuasion to: </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Affect attitudes </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>influence the masses </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>shift public opinion </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>change behaviour </li></ul></ul><ul><li>The style and method depend on the audience </li></ul><ul><li>Messages are multifarious </li></ul><ul><li>Persuasion is ubiquitous – so ignored? </li></ul>
  14. 14. For Seminar 1 <ul><li>What has made you </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Change an opinion of someone (individual or brand) </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Made you do, or not do, something </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Made you think differently about something (person, issue) </li></ul></ul><ul><li>All examples are valid, keep them realistic! </li></ul>