Posted by: loveleigh | March 30, 2009

Ch. 7: Communication

071227_communication_diagram1The 3rd step in the public relations process, after research and planning, is communication. This is the most visible part of public relations work.

According to Patrick Jackson, former editor of PR Reporter and a senior counselor, the communicator should ask whether their proposed message is:

  1. Appropriate
  2. Meaningful
  3. Memorable
  4. Understandable
  5. Believable

Getting your message across to the audience is key. There are two types of audiences we should be aware of:

  • Passive. People who pay attention to a message only because it is entertaining and offers a diversion. This person is lured by creative photos, illustrations, and catchy slogans.
  • Active. People who already have an interest and want more detailed information. This person will read in-depth newspaper and magazine articles about the product.

Understanding the message is another important step in communication. Communication can only take place if the sender and receiver have a common understanding of the symbols being used. To do this the communicator should always write for clarity using symbols, acronyms and slogans. However the communicator needs to avoid jargon, cliches, euphimisms and discriminatory language.

Getting people to act on the message is not easy. One key to understanding how people accept new ideas or products is to analyze the five stage adoption process:

  1. Awareness
  2. Interest
  3. Evaluation
  4. Trial
  5. Adoption

All this information has been provided by Public Relations:Stratiegies and Tactics (9th edition) by Dennis L. Wilcox and Glen T. Cameron


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