C56. Rice, R. E. & Atkin, C. K. (2009). Public communication campaigns: Theoretical principles and practical applications.  In J. Bryant & M. B. Oliver (Eds.), Media effects: Advances in theory and research, 3rd ed. (pp. 436-468). Hillsdale, NJ: Lawrence Erlbaum.


Public communication campaigns can be broadly defined as (1) purposive attempts (2) to inform, persuade, or motivate behavior changes (3) in a relatively well-defined and large audience, (4) generally for noncommercial benefits to the individuals and/or society at large, (5) typically within a given time period, (6) by means of organized commu­nication activities involving mass media, and (7) often complemented by interpersonal support (adapted and expanded from Rogers & Storey, 1987). The use of digital media in campaigns extends the traditional definition a bit. The chapter summarizes general campaign components according to a framework derived from both Atkin (2001) and McGuire (2001), with increased attention to implications of online/digital media for campaigns.

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