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Four Basic Communication Strategies, Beyond the Borders of Traditional Public Relations Practice
Unformatted Document Text:  26 The theoretical aspects of the information strategy are mainly discussed within theories of mass media communication and journalism. Theories on persuasion are chiefly found within social psychology, advertising and propaganda. Discussions of dialogue and consensus-creation strategies are less common in the theoretical field of mass communication science. Yet consensus creation is an important feature of conflict and negotiation theories, as well as of theories on interpersonal communication within an organization. And dialoguing is, at the end of the day, a strategy which is firmly on theories of mediation and interpersonal communication. It is currently being widely discussed and applied in the context of the learning organization and knowledge management. At first sight, the four basic strategies are all identifiable in reality because they are used on an everyday basis in communications between people. In the practice of public relations, however, one- way strategies are deployed more often than two-way strategies. As far as I am aware, no single textbook or manual in the field of public relations or related fields addresses all these forms of communication, let alone dealing with them as strategies for well-managed communications in the context of the organization. However, I propose to go beyond the limiting traditional practical public relations borders and view these four models, based on communication theory and derived from described public relations practices, as basic communication strategies to be used in public relations practice. As a model of basic strategies in public relations, the Communication Grid could serve as a “tool-kit” for everyday practice. As yet, however, it is nothing more than a model developed from theory. It needs to be tested, to determine which strategies are applicable under given conditions, and how they should be used. References: Alvesson, M. & Sköldberg, K. (2000). Reflexive Methodology. New Vistas for Qualitative Research.London: Sage. Ban, A.W. van den (1980). Inleiding tot de voorlichtingskunde. Meppel: Boom. Banton, M. (1996). Role. In: A. Kuper & J. Kuper (eds.). The Social Science Encyclopedia, p. 749-751. London: Routledge.

Authors: Van Ruler, A. A. Betteke.
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26
The theoretical aspects of the information strategy are mainly discussed within theories of mass media
communication and journalism. Theories on persuasion are chiefly found within social psychology,
advertising and propaganda. Discussions of dialogue and consensus-creation strategies are less
common in the theoretical field of mass communication science. Yet consensus creation is an
important feature of conflict and negotiation theories, as well as of theories on interpersonal
communication within an organization. And dialoguing is, at the end of the day, a strategy which is
firmly on theories of mediation and interpersonal communication. It is currently being widely
discussed and applied in the context of the learning organization and knowledge management.
At first sight, the four basic strategies are all identifiable in reality because they are used on an
everyday basis in communications between people. In the practice of public relations, however, one-
way strategies are deployed more often than two-way strategies. As far as I am aware, no single
textbook or manual in the field of public relations or related fields addresses all these forms of
communication, let alone dealing with them as strategies for well-managed communications in the
context of the organization. However, I propose to go beyond the limiting traditional practical public
relations borders and view these four models, based on communication theory and derived from
described public relations practices, as basic communication strategies to be used in public relations
practice. As a model of basic strategies in public relations, the Communication Grid could serve as a
“tool-kit” for everyday practice. As yet, however, it is nothing more than a model developed from
theory. It needs to be tested, to determine which strategies are applicable under given conditions, and
how they should be used.
References:
Alvesson, M. & Sköldberg, K. (2000). Reflexive Methodology. New Vistas for Qualitative Research.
London: Sage.

Ban, A.W. van den (1980). Inleiding tot de voorlichtingskunde. Meppel: Boom.

Banton, M. (1996). Role. In: A. Kuper & J. Kuper (eds.). The Social Science Encyclopedia, p. 749-
751. London: Routledge.


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