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.


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.


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.


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