Getting Organized for Writing & Becoming a Persuasive Writer

8 Sep

 Chapter 1 and 2 Reading Notes COMM 4333

Text: Public Relations Writing and Media Techniques- 6th Edition by Dennis L. Wilcox

Chapter 1- Getting Organized for Writing

4 core concepts of Public relations

  • Research
  • Planning
  • Communication
  • Evaluation

¨      Aka: RACE

  • Strategies and Tactics

Public relation roles according to Professors Glen Broom and David Dozier

The expert prescriber

Communication facilitator

Problem-solving facilitator

Communication technician

Managers vs. Technicians

Managers make policy decisions and are held accountable for public relation outcomes

Technicians carry out low-level mechanics of generating communication products

4 skills necessary for success in Public Relations

Knowledge of PR

Knowledge of Current Events

Knowledge of business

Knowledge of management

Where Journalism differs from Public relations

Objectives

Audiences

Journalism=”mass media”

Channels

Journalism uses 1 channel while Public Relations uses several

Essentials for the public relations writer

Computers

Most important piece of equipment

Reference Source

Encyclopedias

Most popular reference source= Wikipedia

Dictionary

Stylebook

Media Directories

Professional Publications

I.e. PR Reporter, PR News

Internet Groups and Blogs

Current Events and Trends

Research: The Prelude to Writing

The essential first step

Constantly looking up information

Top two resources:

Internet Search Engines

Google

Electronic Databases

Lexis/Nexis

Academic Search Premier

Writing Guidelines

Writing well is essential for work in public relations

Basics:

Outlining the Purpose

Ask yourself key questions about:

Outcome

Audience

Audience’s needs, concerns, interests,

Message

Effectiveness

Believable

Sentences

Clear and concise

Paragraphs

Short are better than long

Word Choice

Choice “reader-friendly” words

Active Verbs and Present Tense

Use verbs!

Imagery

Strong visual descriptions are better than generalized statements

Errors to Avoid

Spelling

Loss of credibility

Gobbledygook and Jargon

Poor Sentence Structure

Wrong Words

“Sound-alike” Words

“Sole” vs. “Soul”

Redundancies

Too Many Numbers

Hype

Bias and Stereotypes

Politically Incorrect Language

Again, avoid stereotypes

Sensitive when describing ethnic groups

 

Chapter 2- Becoming a Persuasive Writer

Persuasion: As Old as Civilization

The Basics of Communication

Sender- sends message

Message

Channel- carries the message to receiver

Receiver

Theories of Communication

Media Use and Gratification

The communication process is interactive

Recipient want to be entertained, informed, and alerted

VALS-lifestyle hierarchy

Survivors and sustainers- bottom of hierarchy. Low incomes, poorly educated, often elderly.

Belongers- family oriented and tradition-lower-or middle income.

Achievers- uppermost level of VALS scale, often college-educated with high incomes.

Cognitive Dissonance

When message is contrary to audience’s predisposition

Framing

Frame a story of maximum interest

Diffusion and Adoption

Awareness

Interest

Trail

Evaluation

Adoption

Relative advantage

Compatibility

Complexity

Trialability

Observability

Hierarchy of Needs

Physiological needs-basics

Safety needs-protection

Social needs- acceptance

Ego needs-self-esteem

Self-actualization needs

Factors of Persuasive Writing

Audience Analysis

Know who your audience

Channeling- tapping a group’s attitudes and values in order to structure a meaningful message

Source Credibility

Appeal to Self-Interest

Clarity of Message

Timing and Context

Symbols, Slogans, and Acronyms

Semantics

-The connotative meaning to various individuals and groups of people.

Suggestions for Action

Content and Structure

Drama, Statistics, Surveys and Polls, Examples, Testimonials, Endorsements,                                 Emotional Appeals

Persuasive Speaking

Yes-yesstart with points which audience agrees with

Offer structure choice- force to choose between A and B

Seek partial commitment

Ask for more, settle for less.

Persuasion and Propaganda

Propaganda techniques- plain folks, testimonial, bandwagon, card staking, transfer, glittering generalities.

Ethics of Persuasion

TARES Test

Truthfulness, Authenticity, Respect, Equity, Social responsibility.

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