Persuasion and the Study of Public Relations

As a freshman and new to the study of public relations, I find myself learning new things about the industry every day. Recently, in my persuasion class, I have been learning about an aspect of the industry that is of vital importance but often overlooked: non-verbal communication.

There are a variety of different ways to communicate non-verbally each highlighting a different aspect of the message you are trying to convey. Below is a list of the tactics of non-verbal communication that are most important when working in the PR industry.

• Physical Appearance: Your physical appearance, or your overall look, is vital when presenting yourself in a professional situation. Appearing groomed and well put together will position yourself as professional and credible when you are at work. Similarly, having your client’s physical appearance match the audience that he or she is appealing to will help them to seem more credible to their audience.

• Chronemics: Chronemics, or the use of time, is also extremely important when working in the PR industry. Being on time to meetings and making deadlines is of the utmost importance when you are working as a public relations specialist. The best PR moves have been made in a timely fashion.

• Haptics: The use of haptics, or communication through touch, is another aspect that PR pros need to take in to consideration. Whether you are the specialist or the client, having a firm handshake can make a world of a difference to your presentation. A firm handshake exudes confidence and allows your audience to feel confident in your hands.

• Artifactual Communication: Similarly to physical appearance, artifactual communication, or communication through objects and ornaments, is extremely important in the professional world. The kind of clothing you wear sets the tone for how people are going to view you. If you are dressed in a professional manner, then people are more likely to treat you as a professional

Taking non-verbal communication into consideration when working in the PR industry can have a substantial effect on your success. Now that you are aware of the different types of non-verbal communication, and how they can affect your presentation, use them to your advantage. Make yourself and your client as marketable as possible!

This guest blog was written by PRowl Public Relations staff member Lexi Drexler.

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