Marketing pp 67-83 | Cite as

Communication Theory and Marketing

  • Michael J. Baker
Part of the Macmillan Studies in Marketing Management book series (STMM)


One of the central preoccupations of marketing management concerned with media selection, or in media/advertising research is the development of effective persuasive communications which will successfully accomplish some marketing objective. Unfortunately two of the major problems of marketing management have been to determine which persuasive communications will be most effective, in advance of use, and to measure to what extent the persuasive communication has been successful in achieving its marketing objective. This chapter is addressed to an analysis of the body of theory originating predominantly in social psychology and communications research, which has been applied to the two problems identified here. First, however, a definition.


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Notes and References

  1. 1.
    Indeed the use of the phraseology ‘target market’ reflects early ‘propagandist’ interpretations of the effect of persuasive com-munication. Under this interpretation the audience is viewed as so many passive targets waiting to be ‘hit’ by the advertisement or contacted by the salesman etc.Google Scholar
  2. 2.
    S. H. Britt, ‘Are So-Called Successful Advertising Campaigns Really Successful?’, Journal of Advertising Research, vol. 9, no. 2 (1969).Google Scholar
  3. 3.
    See, for example, L. Festinger, A Theory of Cognitive Dissonance (New York: Harper, 1957) for the theoretical background to this position and R. J. Holloway, ‘An Experiment on Consumer Dissonance’, Journal of Marketing, vol. 31 (Jan 1969) for an example of its application.Google Scholar
  4. 4.
    R. J. Lavidge and G. A. Steiner, ‘A Model for Predictive Measurement of Advertising Effectiveness’, Journal of Marketing (25 Oct 1961).Google Scholar
  5. 5.
    For a review see E. M. Rogers and T. F. Shoemaker, Communication of Innovations (Glencoe, Ill.: Free Press, 1971).Google Scholar
  6. 6.
    S. Pollit, ‘Has Anything Gone Wrong with Advertising Research?’, Admap (May 1971).Google Scholar
  7. 7.
    S. Moscovici, ‘Attitudes and Opinions’, Annual Review of Psychology, 14 (1963) pp. 249–50.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  8. 8.
    E. Katz and P. F. Lazarsfeld, Personal Influence: The Part Played by People in the Flow of Mass Communications (New York: Free Press, 1955).Google Scholar
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    B. Ryan and N. Gross, ‘The Diffusion of Hybrid Seed Corn in Two Iowa Communities’, Rural Sociology, VIII (Mar 1943) pp. 15–24.Google Scholar
  11. 11.
    Reviewed by Rogers and Shoemaker, Communication of Innovations.Google Scholar
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    W. Schramm, ‘How Communication Works’, in The Process and Effects of Mass Communication, 6th edn, ed. W. Schramm (University of Illinois Press, 1965).Google Scholar
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    R. A. Bauer, ‘The Role of the Audience in the Communication Process: Summary’, in Proceedings of the American Marketing Association, ed. Stephen A. Greyser, American Marketing Association, Chicago (1963).Google Scholar
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    J. T. Klapper, The Effects of Mass Communication (New York: Free Press, 1960).Google Scholar
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    C. I. Hovland, I. L. Janis and H. H. Kelley, Communication and Persuasion (Yale University Press, 1953).Google Scholar
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    Klapper, Effects of Mass Communication.Google Scholar
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  19. 19.
    Hovland, Janis and Kelley, Communication and Persuasion.Google Scholar
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    C. W. King and J. O. Summers, Interaction Patterns in Interpersonal Communication, paper no. 168, West Lafayette, Indiana, Herman C. Krannert Graduate School of Industrial Administration, Purdue University Institute for Research in the Behavioral, Economic and Management Sciences (1967).Google Scholar
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  24. 24.
    See C. W. King and J. O. Summers, ‘Overlap of Opinion Leadership across Consumers’ Product Categories’, Journal of Marketing Research, vol. 7 (Feb 1970).Google Scholar
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    Katz and Lazarsfeld, Personal Influence.Google Scholar
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    Rogers, Diffusion of Innovations.Google Scholar
  27. 27.
    J. R. Mancuso, ‘Why Not Create Opinion Leaders for New Product Introductions?’, Journal of Marketing, vol. 33 (July 1969) pp. 20–5.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  28. 28.
    See, for example, F. E. Webster, ‘Informal Communication in Industrial Markets, Journal of Marketing Research (May 1970) pp. 186–9, and J. Martilla, ‘Word of Mouth Communication in the Industrial Adoption Process’, Journal of Marketing Research, vol. VIII (May 1971) pp. 173–8.Google Scholar
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  30. 30.
    See, for example, D. F. Cox, ‘Information and Uncertainty: Their Effects on the Consumers’ Product Evaluations’, Boston H. B. School D.B.A. Thesis (1963); and J. Arndt, ‘Perceived Risk, Sociometric Integration and Word of Mouth Advertising in the Adoption of a New Product’, in Science Technology and Marketing, ed. R. M. Haas, Proceedings of the American Marketing Association, Chicago (1966) pp. 698–721.Google Scholar
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    G. S. Day, ‘Attitude Change, Media and Word of Mouth’, Journal of Advertising Research, II (6) (1971).Google Scholar
  32. 32.
    I. L. Janis and S. Feshbach, ‘Effects of Fear-Arousing Communications’, Journal of Abnormal and Social Psychology, vol. 48 (Jan 1953) pp. 78–92.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  33. 33.
    For a review see K. L. Higbee, ‘Fifteen Years of Fear Arousal: Research on Threat Appeals, 1953–1968’, Psychological Bulletin, vol. 72.Google Scholar
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    M. L. Ray and W. L. Wilkie, ‘Fear: The Potential of an Appeal Neglected by Marketing’, Journal of Marketing, vol. 34 (Jan 1970) pp. 54–62.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  35. 35.
    For a review see I. L. Janis, ‘Effects of Fear Arousal on Attitude Change: Recent Developments in Theory and Experimental Research’, Advances in Experimental Social Psychology, vol. 3 (1967) pp. 167–225.Google Scholar
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    H. Ebinghauss, Das Gedachtnis (Berlin: Duncker & Humbolt, 1885).Google Scholar
  37. 37.
    An up-to-date review is given by M. L. Ray, A. G. Sawyer and E. C. Strong, ‘Frequency Effects Revisited’, Journal of Advertising Research, vol. n no. 1 (Feb 1971). The classic paper remains that of H. A. Zielske, ‘The Remembering and Forgetting of Advertising’, Journal of Marketing (Jan 1959).Google Scholar
  38. 38.
    H. Claychamp and A. Amstutz, ‘Simulation Techniques in the Analysis of Market Strategy’, in Applications of the Sciences in Marketing Management, ed. Frank M. Bass (New York: Wiley, 1968) pp. 113–51.Google Scholar

Copyright information

© Michael J. Baker and Macmillan Publishers Limited 1976

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  • Michael J. Baker

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