April 2020 archive

Chapter 11 Artifacts

Studying Abroad & Pregiving

Last semester, I studied abroad in Rome, Italy. By the University I attended, there is a piazza called “Piazza del Popolo” and almost every time I walked through it there were men shoving roses in my face, trying to get me to take it. I also saw these people with toy cars, trying to attract young kids to pick them up and make their parents buy it for them. These men were mostly targeting tourists or people that did not know once you physically held the rose in your hand they would beg and follow you until you gave them money, so locals obviously knew better.

All of these are examples of pregiving which is doing favors or offering gifts in advance. The textbook talks about how real-world persuaders are known to put the tactic of pregiving to use. The book refers to the men I was talking about as “panhandlers.” They say the panhandlers wait a block or two from a well-known tourist destination. Once there, the panhandlers ask for a donation for the unrequested and unneeded service they just did (Gass & Seiter, 2018 p. 262).

source: personal story

Girl Scout Cookies & LPC

I was a Girl Scout when I was a little girl. I was the most competitive girl in my troop, especially when it came to selling Girl Scout cookies. I always had a goal to sell the most in my troop so I can get the cool prize for that year. It may have driven my mom a little crazy when all 300 boxes of cookies were piled up in the hall of our house for me to go out and deliver, but I loved it. Each year, I would go around to nearly every house in my neighborhood.

The reason why I would sell so many cookies is because I would not take no for an answer. When someone told me, they didn’t eat sugar or were on a “diet,” I had the perfect sales pitch. I would say, “if you do not want the cookies for yourself, you can buy boxes to donate to the soldiers in Iraq and Afghanistan.” This worked almost every time.

When I read about the legitimizing paltry contributions (LPC) in Chapter 11, I immediately thought about my way of selling Girl Scout cookies when I was younger. The LPC involves letting people know that very small donations would be acceptable (Gass & Seiter, 2018 p. 275). If people did not want to buy the cookies, I would give them the option that they could donate to our soldiers and this almost always worked and increased my cookie sales.

source: personal story

Bait-and-Switch Tactic with European Airlines


I had always heard that flights throughout Europe were often cheaper than flights within the United States. When I was studying abroad last semester, I found this to be true. I thought it must be because the demand to travel around Europe is higher than it is within the United States so prices were a lot cheaper.

My friends and I booked a flight from Rome to Paris for 35 euros, which is crazy cheap. However, after finding these cheap flights, they sold out really fast so you have to book it right away. When I read about the bait-and-switch tactic in Chapter 11, it made me think of cheap European airline prices. According to the textbook, the bait and switch is an effective strategy for gaining compliance (Joule, 1989). I agree with this because these cheap prices got me to purchase airline tickets right away before they would sell out, or prices would increase and I would no longer be interested in purchasing tickets (Gass & Seiter, 2018 p. 274).

However, because the prices are so cheap the quality of service these airlines are offering is not the best. One particular, airline called “RyanAir” is known to be extremely cheap but probably the worst quality of service in any airline I have flown on.

source: personal story

Chapter 10 Artifacts

Power & Legitimacy with COVID-19

During this time with COVID-19, I have noticed many persuasive messages in the media. This photo shows nurses and doctors holding up signs that read, “we stay at work for you please stay home for us!”

This persuasive message is very powerful for several reasons. This persuasive message applies expert power. Expert power is based on what a person knows, for example you may do what a doctor tells you to do because they know more about medicine than you do (Gass & Seiter, 2018 p. 244). In this photo, doctors are using expert power to get US citizens to stay at home during this national pandemic so we can get rid of the virus. By staying at home, people will be healthier and safer, and help to not overwhelm the hospitals which is a personal benefit.

This image can also be seen as a rewarding activity under compliance-gaining because the doctors are seeking compliance in an active and positive way (Gass & Seiter, 2018 p. 237). They are making a promise to citizens that they are going to work each day to fight this virus, so we must stay home for this to end.

source: https://whdh.com/news/nurses-at-brigham-and-womens-hospital-urge-people-to-stay-home-if-possible/


My Parents & Compliance Gaining

When my brother and I were younger, my parents had us to chores around the house. For example, my job was to always feed the dog and set the table for dinner.

Sometimes, when I was younger I would say things like, “mom I don’t want to do that.” My mom would say, “Lauren it is your job, I don’t care what you want. Feed the dog!”

In this case, my mom was not concerned belief or attitude change. My mom does not care that I do not enjoy doing my chores, such as feeding the dog. My mom just wanted compliance, or behavior change. The textbook explains, research examining compliance gaining generally focuses on persuasion aimed at getting others to do something or to act in a certain way.

This example can also be seen as dominance in compliance gaining because in my family, my mom and dad hold the most power (Gass & Seiter, 2018 p. 240). Therefore, they have more power to influence my brother and I.

source: personal story

Tiger Woods & Expertise

This article with Tiger Woods came from Nike when Tiger secured his third victory of the season at the AT&T National in 2014. In the article, it says “helping him to his third victory of the season was his full bag of 14 Nike clubs, including his Nike 001 putter.”

Nike’s Method technology features Nike’s polymetal groove technology that generates a faster forward roll at impact for increased accuracy.  This technology has been instrumental in the 37 wins by Nike athletes on the Professional Tours worldwide.

With high temperatures reaching over 110 degrees, Woods, along with his fellow Nike athletes in the field, were prepared for the heat thanks to Nike’s Dri-FIT technology in its apparel.  First introduced to golf by Nike in 1998, Nike’s Dri-FIT technology is a moisture-wicking performance fabric that is lightweight and less restrictive.  Dri-FIT technology dries more quickly and promotes moisture management, while preventing clinging to the skin.

This article is targeted at people who play golf and want to get better. Nike used Tiger Woods to get people to buy their equipment so they “can play like Tiger.” I thought Nike using Tiger Woods is a good example of expertise. Expertise involves attempts to make a person think that the persuader has some special knowledge (Gass & Seiter, 2018 p. 244). Here, Nike is using Tiger to appear more credible that their equipment and apparel works.

source: https://news.nike.com/news/nike-athlete-tiger-woods-secures-his-third-victory-of-the-season-at-att-national



Chapter 9 Artifacts

Inoculation Theory & Drunk Driving

The Inoculation Theory was proposed by McGuire (1964) in response to a situation where the goal is to persuade someone not to be persuaded by another. The theory is a model for building resistance to persuasion attempts by exposing people to arguments against their beliefs and giving them counter arguments to refute attacks. The theory therefore offers mechanisms by which communication is used to help people defend their beliefs.

Research has shown that the focus on promoting methods by which students can resist peer pressure to start smoking has resulted in a substantial reduction of smoking among students. Inoculation theory has also been used to bring down the cases of drunken driving.

I think this advertisement by Fiat Brazil is a great example of Inoculation theory. It shows a bicyclist who disappears after the tab on a beer can is opened. The purpose of this ad is to persuade people not to drink and drive. The audience of this advertisement is anyone that drives and also drinks or may be in a situation where they are persuaded to drink and drive because it may be convenient for them but they should not because they could put other people in danger, as this advertisement is showing.

source: https://ggwash.org/view/70352/would-this-brazilian-ad-make-you-think-twice-about-drunk-driving

Repetition & Kit Kat Commercial

When I saw this commercial, I thought of the repetition in the breaking and crunch in the sound of chewing the Kit Kat over and over again. I think this Kit Kat commercial is a good example of message repetition.

The mere exposure theory suggests that we really do “acquire tastes,” that things “grow on us” (Sawyer 1981). This theory hypothesizes that familiar objects are more liked than less familiar ones, and that by merely being repetitively exposed, something initially will be looked upon more favorably. The repetition of the sound when the people break the Kit Kat off the bar and chew it then proceed to say, “mhm” persuades the audience to get this snack. I think the audience is people who may have office jobs and want a quick treat during the day that Kit Kat’s taste delicious and is a great snack to treat yourself throughout a busy work day.

source: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=UOGTsKLZofA

 Commercial & Implicit Conclusions


I think this Geico commercial is a good example of an implicit conclusion because at the end, they say “who wants more value for that dollar.”

Because this commercial relies on customers to draw their own inferences, in this case the value of getting Geico insurance. It uses what persuasion scholars refer to as an implicit conclusions approach. If the ad had said, “switch to Geico insurance,” the ad would have used an explicit conclusion approach, in which case claims are directly stated by the person sending the message.

The audience for this advertisements is adults over the age of 22 and interested in saving money on insurance. I think this implicit message comes off in a funny way because of the way they are showing how much of a long way one dollar can go with the vending machine example. I think this message can be relevant to the receiver because most people want to save money. Therefore, implicit conclusions are more persuasive than explicit ones (Sawyer & Howard, 1991). Similarly, because people who are “high in the need for cognition” are more likely to “fill in the blanks,” they prefer implicit approaches to explicit ones (Martin, Lang, and Wong, 2003/2004).

source: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=7OIEFo2axGE

Chapter 8 Artifacts

Facial Expressions: Crest “You Can Say Anything with a Smile” Campaign

Of all possible facial expressions, smiling has been studied the most. To be sure, research has shown that by smiling, waitresses can earn more tips, therapists are judged to be warmer and more competent, and job interviewees create positive impressions of themselves.

The situational nature of facial expressions and other non verbal behaviors is even more apparent if you consider communication accommodation theory (Giles & Wiemann, 1987). According to this theory, rather than using any one type of nonverbal behavior, a persuader should try to build rapport with others by mirroring or mimicking their nonverbal cues. In other words, smile when people smile and frown when people frown.

This behavior can be seen in the Crest “You Can Say Anything with a Smile” Campaign. In each of the 3 scenarios the other person starts to smile because they other person is smiling even though he is bringing the other person bad news. Overall, mimicking the other person’s behavior makes us more susceptible to that person’s persuasive attempts.

source: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=joItR0DNlnc

Physical Appearance: Victorias Secret “Perfect Body”

A person’s physical appearance may be only skin deep, but it is persuasive. The people out there trying to influence us know this. The products being endorsed by attractive models do not even have to be connected with making us more attractive. Attractive people are judged to be happier, more intelligent, friendlier, stronger, and kinder, and are thought to have better personalities, better jobs, and greater marital competence (Knapp, 1992).

According to Argyle (1998), faces are perceived as more attractive when they have wide cheekbones, narrow cheeks, high eyebrows, wide pupils, large smiles, noses that are not too long or too short, and eyes not too far apart or too close together.

The “Perfect Body” Campaign by Victorias Secret is a great example of a company using physical appearance to persuade customers to buy their product. All the models they use are skinny, have long beautiful hair, and are tall with long legs. This persuasive technique may not work on every female but it will work on some as they see how beautiful the models are and if they buy their product they can look like that too. Victoria’s Secret did get into trouble for this advertisement campaign because it was body shaming which is unethical.

source: https://nypost.com/2014/10/31/victorias-secret-perfect-body-campaign-sparks-backlash/

Vocal Fry: Kim Kardashian

Paralinguistics or vocalics, is the study of vocal stimuli aside from spoken words. It includes such elements as pitch, rate, pauses, volume, tone of voice, silences, laughs, screams, and sighs. The way in which persons speak affects how they are perceived as well as their ability to persuade.

Vocal Fry or “creaky voice” is characterized by drawing out the end of sentences with a low, croaking growl int he back of the throat. Vocal fry is increasingly common among young American females, and leads them, more so than males, to be perceived as less competent, less trustworthy, less attractive, and less hirable.

In this compilation of Kim Kardashian, you can hear her “creaky voice” and because of her high-pitched voice, people may thunk she is more attractive and extroverted than people who have low-pitched voices.

source: https://www.cheatsheet.com/entertainment/kim-kardashian-made-a-subtle-change-that-fans-think-makes-her-more-powerful.html/