COMM 339 -- Persuasion

Dr. Lee McGaan  

  Office:  WH 308  (ph. 309-457-2155);  email
  Home:  418 North Sunny Lane (ph. 309-734-5431, cell 309-333-5447)

Fall 2016 Office Hours:   MWF:  9:30 - 10am, 11am - Noon & 1 -2pm TTh:  2-3pm & by apt.  |  copyright (c) by Lee McGaan, 2006-2016

Campaign Persuasion


 1. What is a campaign?

a.  a complex response to exigence

b.  using multiple messages

c.  occurring over time

d.  usually involving persuasion by degree / in stages

e.  in which mediation is quite important


2.  Campaign (planning) Stages  (Items below in blue represent labeled sections for your campaign plan paper)

a.  Planning:

i.  goal (outcomes) setting:  ideal, expected, minimal

ii.  audience analysis (as we've done it)

iii.  situational analysis - general environment,

-                                                                                   constraints

iv.  research and development

v.  overall strategy

b. Mobilization of resources:

i.  personnel - recruiting and energizing

ii.  material - fund-raising & budgeting, facilities, etc.

iii.  communication resources - media access, etc.

c. Legitimation,  by...

i.  position (job, experience, groups)

ii.  by endorsement

iii.  by cause (moral ground)

iv.  by power

d.  Promotion - awareness and image

i.  identity - themes, symbols, logos, etc.

(1)     What you say defines you and the subject (congruity).  Image and substance interact

(2)  actions as well as words count

(3)  consider a hook to cultural myths and values

ii.  credibility -

     1.  trust in sources/messages,

     2.  confidence in product/topic,

     3.  identification of campaign with audience(s), i.e. building common ground


iii. case building   The overall Message Strategy


In this step create and order messages containing arguments and appeals by audience segment)

                   In creating persuasive appeals strategy consider:


                                   Audience elements, including

                 1.      campaign participants

                  2.      general public

                  3.      opinion leaders (often reference group members)

                 a.      Are highly esteemed & influential

                 b.      Are more aware & responsive to comm. (esp. outside of group)

                 c.      Are more cosmopolitan than average

                 d.      Are more open to change/ innnovation

                 e.      Have higher levels of interaction with others

                 4.      other specific audience segments you have discovered for your campaign


(1)  Using central  route techniques - Arguments in message (by segment?)

  • Modifying Beliefs and attitudes

  • Using Values and Motives

  • Responding to obstacles involving attitude toward behavior

  • Use of other theories

(2)  Using Appeals/tactics -- incl. peripheral route techniques (see Age of Propaganda)

(3)   Including behavior gaining tactics  (reciprocity, response set, public commitment, etc.)

e.  Activation -

detailed action plans

 (early) public commitment - co-option

follow through / follow up

penetration - from 2nd order communications to their audiences

Elements of Each Activation Plan Message or Activity

  1. what the activity is,

  2. what method/medium will be used

  3. what goal you have for the message/activity and

  4. the audience/ segment the activity/message is aimed at.  


            By the end of this section of planning it should be clear how your goals could be accomplished with this plan


Last updated 4/17/2016