Military Influence Operations: Review of the Consumer Psychology Literature
HUMANSYSTEMS INC GUELPH (ONTARIO)
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Following-up on a previous review of mainstream academic and scientific literature, this chapter reviews consumer psychology literature as it relates to persuasion and attitudes. Specifically, this chapter focuses on 2 prominent areas of persuasion research 1. the creation of persuasive messages, and 2. the audience being targeted for the messages. With respect to the message, this chapter highlights a number of methods for increasing persuasiveness of the message. These include presenting both positive and negative information in a message, repeating messages, as well as using vivid imagery, narratives, and a personal approach. With respect to the target audience, there is considerable variety in the literature. That is, research in consumer psychology suggests that an individuals need for cognition, mood, motivation, and goals all impact on their ability to be persuaded. In addition, culture and the relevance of the message to the individual also impact persuasion. From a PSYOPS perspective, then, this chapter underlines the importance of using sound persuasion principles when creating persuasive messages and the criticality of the target audience analysis as a means to understanding how exactly target messages should be tailored.