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Influential Source Messengers

  • By: Kami J. Silk & Kristin M. Pace
  • In: Encyclopedia of Health Communication
  • Edited by: Teresa L. Thompson
  • Subject:Public Health Education & Health Promotion, Health Psychology, Health Communication

One way to improve the effectiveness of a health message is to select a message source with characteristics that are likely to influence the intended audience. The source of a message is the person, group, or organization delivering the message to an audience. It is important to note that a spokesperson or individual delivering the message is typically considered to be a representation of the group or organization that is sponsoring the message and takes on the characteristics associated with the message sponsor; for example, a spokesperson from the American Red Cross (ARC) would be assigned positive attributes such as being honest and helpful because the ARC is perceived that way. The characteristics that make sources more influential include credibility, attractiveness, and power.

Characteristics of Influential ...
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