Media Content and Its Psychological Influence

Subject: Psychology
Pages: 10
Words: 2758
Reading time:
10 min
Study level: PhD

Advertising

Business Leaders Magazine, Four Ways to Address Customer Complaints Online, 2007

The magazine addresses the needs of customers who feel their rights have been violated and need to be shown directions. The author, Micah Solomon, gives some of the strategies to be used by online customers, as well as suppliers, to achieve their aims and objectives. The first principle according to this marketing strategist is to minimize the chances of public social media complaints, by trying as much as possible to satisfy the needs of clients. When producers and suppliers employ the tactic that is, producing goods that would gratify their customers, such clients would rarely complain publicly through social sites such as Twitter, Facebook, Yelp, and other online forums. As an alternative, customers would opt to raise their complaints by communicating directly with the company staff through emails, phone calls, and feedback forms that are always available on the company’s website. In this regard, a company should ensure that its representative is available twenty-four-seven to address the issues raised by customers at whatever time. Furthermore, the company needs to establish a chat box that would help customers who might be in urgent need. Customers would be encouraged to chat with the support team whenever they feel offended.

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The second strategy entails avoiding arguments with clients who do are fond of posting negative comments regarding the company’s products and services. The author cautions producers and suppliers that they can rarely win an argument with a customer. For instance, the company might win the battle as regards arguing but the customer will have been lost. The situation is even worse when the argument is online because the customer will inform other customers about the argument and the poor service he or she received. Therefore, producers and suppliers need to think about their businesses before engaging customers in an argument. The third principle, as suggested by the author of this article entails turning the ever-complaining customers into thankful people. This would entail reaching out directly to those online complainers. By responding to customer complaints directly, the company would be avoiding public discussions and moving the discussion to a one–on–one forum. The company can easily deal with an unsatisfied customer without involving the public. The entire public cannot comprehend what could be going on between the customer and the company. It would be like an in-store situation whereby a complaining customer is segregated from other customers to address his or her worries effectively. The final strategy suggested by the author is to avoid fiascos with customers. The author defines fiasco in his own words whereby he notes that small errors plus slow response time would lead to colossal public relations disaster. By this, the author means that the scale of social media pandemonium augments inexplicably with the length of the response time. Thus, the author challenges online marketers to be aware of the effects of delays in responding to customer complaints.

News and Politics

The Washington Times: Health Care Law Here to Stay” President Insists, 2012

In the article, the authors present the president’s views as regards the new health care law instituted recently in American society, which has elicited various opinions and comments. The president reiterated that the bill was there to stay, citing some legal reasons. The authors of the article, Dinan Stephen and Crabtree Susan wondered whether the funds to implement the law could be referred to as penalties or taxes, since a majority of citizens, especially the rich, as opposed to the bill from the start. The presidential aspirant, Mitt Romney was quoted criticizing the law, terming it unconstitutional and a burden to the American people. This invited sharp reactions from the head of state and his advisors who insisted that the law was good for all Americans and it had to be supported through taxation. The president is still facing a challenge owing to the high court’s ruling that some amendments have to be made to the law (Monroe, 2002). Obama, through his White House representative and his campaign spokesperson, insisted that the law calling for all Americans to acquire an insurance cover does not need any sanctions as regards taxation. Jay Carney in a statement argued that the law demanding all Americans to be covered affected less than one percent of the entire American population. Furthermore, individuals would not be forced to pay for the insurance cover but instead, they would voluntarily pay for their benefit.

Target Audience

In the first magazine, that is, Business Leaders Magazine, the author aims at educating the producers and suppliers on how they can improve their public relations, which is a critical aspect of advertising, among online customers. The author gives specific strategies that would be employed in case companies wish to strengthen their market grips. Specifically, the author targeted those marketers and other business executives who conduct business online. In the modern world, everything has gone hi-tech meaning that producers need to be equipped with specific tactics that would help them withstand the challenges brought about by globalization (Wageman, & Baker, 1997).

In the Second magazine, which was authored a few days ago, the two authors present the views of the two aspiring presidents, that is, the incumbent Barrack Obama and Mitt Romney concerning the health care law. The incumbent, who was the main architect of the law, supports the implementation of the bill while the Republican candidate opposes the bill, terming it a burden to taxpayers. The message contained in the magazine aims at presenting the views of the two aspirants to the voters. Therefore, the main target is the voter.

Content

The first message contains business messages aiming at educating the marketing executives on how to handle stubborn customers. The content is objective meaning that it does not aim at eliciting any opinion from the public. On the other hand, the magazine contains a political message. The two authors aimed at eliciting opinions and viewpoints from the members of the public as regards the opinions of the two presidential aspirants.

Comparisons

For the first magazine, the Business Leaders Magazine, the author presents a message that aims at informing his or her audience about the best strategies for improving performance. The content is therefore informative as compared to the second Magazine, which aims at persuading the audience. For the first Magazine, the other uses several strategies to inform his or her audiences on the best marketing practices as regards online customers. For this reason, the author informs through definitions, descriptions, explanations, classifications, comparisons, and contractions. The author must have engaged in some form of research to arrive at his conclusions. The content of the magazine is objective, unlike the content of the second message, which is subjective. It can be concluded that the message in the first magazine is made of facts and the ideas presented are backed by research not personal opinions. The write has the sole objective of conveying the message to the public. The writer engaging in expository writing, such as in the first Magazine reveals his or her knowledge concerning the subject matter. Such writers employ strategies such as an explanation of events, for instance how something is done like preparing a recipe, which gives a systematic process. The most important feature of this type of writing is that it gives a systematic process using transitional words such as firstly, secondly, and finally (Deckers, 2010).

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In contrast, the content of the second magazine is political, which aims at convincing or persuading the public to come to terms with a certain idea or viewpoint. The authors combine the elements of both expository and expressive writings to persuade the audience to concur with their perspectives. The authors wanted the audiences to have the same viewpoints as theirs. Alternatively, the authors could be having an objective of forcing the audience to take action, for instance, to decide their presidential candidates. When persuading, the author will always want to win the emotions of the audience, as well as win their expressions. To win another person’s emotions, the message should have facts.

Effect of the Messages

In the first message, the author aimed to influence the buyers to comply with the reasoning of the seller. The message was aimed at convincing the complainants to come to terms with the goods and services offered by the producers. Therefore, the message could have an impact on the beliefs, opinions, and behavior of the customers. Through the message, customers are indeed the most valued assets of any enterprise. It is costly to acquire and retain customers hence it is prudent to come up with strategies that would help capture their attention. Several factors, including advertising, determine the psychology of the customer. On the other hand, the perception of marketing is influenced by several factors. The psychological aspects such as cognitive, emotional, and behavioral are the most important. In this regard, it is believed that information is perceived through the sense of seeing. The images used in advertising can affect the subconscious part of the brain of the customer. The colors, shapes, and sizes used could have the potential to influence the customer to purchase the product. Studies show that the purchase of the product or service in the market depends on the customer’s psychology. Therefore, it can be established that cognition is related to how the customer perceives an advertising message. Advertising tends to affect the cognitive aspects of a customer. Human senses are the major aspects of cognition, which are targeted by advertisers. Kotler (2003) observed that four psychological processes exist in organizational psychology, including motivation, perception, learning, and memorizing. The four aspects influence the customer’s marketing stimuli. Another scholar determined that advertising messages affect human behavior differently. Jokubauskas (2007) postulated that cognitive factors such as senses, reasoning, language, and perception affect human behavior as regards the acquisition of goods and services. Other scholars came up with a hierarchy on how advertising affects human cognitive aspects. First, an advert affects human concentration, which interferes with the decisions made by a customer. Secondly, the perception of the customer is altered implying that he or she may change the perception depending on the advert. Thirdly, the customer tries to come up with rationalized decisions that might affect his or her choices in the market. Finally, the customer assimilates the advert into his or her cognitive features (Pinder, 2008). The message would affect all customers, including adults, adolescents, and children.

Regarding politics, scholars have noted that human beings are greatly affected by political messages given the fact that man is both a social and political animal. Political Psychologists observe that psychology affects human behavior in some ways. Politics influences an individual’s beliefs, motivation, perception, cognition, information procession, learning strategies, and socialization. Political aspects possess various forms of power such as legitimate power, coercive power, and reward power. These forms of power affect individuals in their decision-making processes. Some people would make decisions because their political leaders advised them to do so. Some would go against a particular policy given the fact that a different political leader generated it. In the Washington Times Magazine, many individuals (Republicans) would refute the claims that the health care bill will help them because a different political party (Democratic Party) generated it. Unfortunately, even the poor, who are projected to benefit from the law, would dispute it only because Democrats formulated it. Therefore, political information influences the reasoning and behavior of individuals in many ways. Since the law under contention is backed by legitimate power, members of the American could not have any option but to comply with it once the law is finalized. Even those who would wish otherwise will not have any choice apart from insuring their health (Lowman, 2002). The content of the Washington Times Magazine would affect all voters but not children and adolescents.

Depiction of Different Groups

In the two Magazines, the authors portray groups differently. In the first Magazine that is the Business Leader Magazine, the author portrays customers as people who are indecisive and are unable to make decisions on their own. Customers only respond to media messages because they are convinced that whatever attracts the eye is good for consumption. However, the author portrays marketing executives as people who can influence consumers to accept their goods and services without complaints. Adverts portray individuals as people who would wish to live expensive lives. The adverts influence people to consume beyond their limits. The information provided by the Business Leader Magazine teaches business executives how they can extract money from customers through the sale of luxury goods. Those individuals who are used to complaining are branded, as stubborn customers are various strategies are often designed to cope with their behaviors. The information in the advert portrays online customers as people who can ruin the business in case their interests are not taken care of in time. The author affirms this when he claims business executives need to be careful when handling complaints from online customers. For business owners and producers, they are portrayed as people who are interested in making profits only. No matter what happens, business executives need to make a profit hence they should know how to influence the cognitive processes of customers (Nunnally, & Bernstein, 1994).

In the second magazine that is, the Washington Times, the two authors portray voters as people who cannot make decisions without being convinced to do so. The poor are portrayed as individuals who are out to claim their rights by pushing for reforms in the health sector. The Democratic Party and its presidential aspirant support this group. The main aim of the party is to obtain the votes of the poor. By supporting health care plans, the Democratic Party is portrayed as a party that supports equality, egalitarianism, and the well-being of each person in society. However, the main aim of the party is not to support the poor but to win elections. On the other hand, the Republican Party is portrayed as a party that does not give in to the claims of the minority and the segregated population in society. It stands out firm to oppose the proposals suggested by the opponent. However, it does not claim to oppose the health care plan but it purports to introduce a different plan that would incorporate the views of all (Hayduk, 1987).

Implications of Portraying Social Groups Homogenously

Many things have taken place in America, which calls for an insightful investigation to uncover all aspects. Even though racism has always taken a centre stage, it is not the only way of presenting American characters. Asians have undergone many problems in America but few types of research talk about them. The Chinese have variously been branded as bandits due to the production of cheap goods. Japanese on the other hand suffer from money laundering labeling. This shows that each group has its concerns in the wider society. Asian/white binary is just one of the mediums of presenting American character (Aube, & Rousseau, 2005).

Throughout American history, women have suffered the most. Societal structure discriminated against women against all social benefits such as employment, political participation, and economic supremacy. The author does not talk about this in her analysis. Until recently, women were not allowed to join certain fields or professions in the labor market. Such expert fields were reserved for men. During the 1930s recession, women proved their worth but still, they were not fully appreciated in society. After the World Wars, women capitalized on the president’s speech to demand equal representation and participation in politics. The president declared that the war was meant to bring democracy and equality. Through feminine organizations, many historical events have been set. Language use in modern society is neutral meaning that women need not adopt male names upon marriage. Legislations have been passed aiming at protecting the rights of women. This proves that American history is not about race only, as observed by the authors (Cottam, Dietz-Uhler, Mastors, Preston, 2010).

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The issue of allocation of resources has threatened to divide Americans in the past. The poor have not been allowed to participate in production fully. The rich have acquired the state, which they use to prevent the poor from revolting against the status quo. Recent studies confirm that the gap between the bourgeoisie and the proletariat is widening. The less fortunate from time to time have risen to challenge their position in society. This is another area of concern confirming that American history is diverse, contrary to what the author views (Sackett, & Wilk, 1994).

References

Aube, C., & Rousseau, V. (2005). Team goal commitment and team effectiveness: The role of task interdependence and supportive behaviors. Group Dynamics: Theory, Research, and Practice, 9(1), 189–204.

Cottam, M.L., Dietz-Uhler, B., Mastors, E., Preston, T. (2010). Introduction to Political Psychology. New York, NY: Psychology Press.

Deckers, L. (2010). Motivation; Biological, Psychological and Environmental (3rd ed.). Boston, MA: Pearson.

Hayduk, L.A. (1987). Structural equations modeling with LISREL. Baltimore, MD: Johns Hopkins University Press.

Lowman, R.L. (2002). The California School of Organizational Studies handbook of organizational consulting psychology: A comprehensive guide to theory, skills and techniques. San Francisco, CA: Jossey-Bass.

Monroe, K.R. (2002). Political Psychology). Mahwah, NJ: Lawrence Erlbaum Associates, Inc., Publishers.

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Nunnally, J. & Bernstein, I. (1994). Psychometric theory (3rd ed.). New York: McGraw-Hill.

Pinder, C. C. (2008). Work motivation in organizational behavior (2nd ed.). New York: Psychology Press.

Sackett, P.R., & Wilk, S.L. (1994). Within group norming and other forms of score adjustment in pre-employment testing. American Psychologist, 49(1), 929–54.

Wageman, R., & Baker, G. (1997). Incentives and cooperation: The joint effects of task and reward interdependence on group performance. Journal of Organizational Behavior, 18(2), 139–58.