week 10 – public opinion

‘Public opinion refer to the expressions of attitudes as derived from evaluations that the public make about what is happening in society’

Although the opinions of the public are highly valued in the field of Public Relations, I believe that the opinion, whatever it may be, needs to be looked at into more detail before it is taken for gospel. There are an endless amount of factors that can influence one’s opinion on any topic. These can include:

  • Individual’s personal experience
  • How much information the individual has on the matter
  • Their age
  • Their nationality
  • What people they often associate with think on the matter
  • Their religious beliefs
  •  Who is asking their opinion on the matter ( if it a person of authority or power, the individual is more likely to agree with their opinion)Just to make reference to a few influential factors.
    There is a lot of pressure on individual’s today to fit in with the social norms, therefore the opinion people give on a matter may not necessarily be what they believe, therefore we can not merely rely on what they tell us. We are influenced by more things than we ever have before, through new media approaches via social media sites, an increase in retail advertising, aswell as things such as apps, which can often be associated with such things as online shopping websites, trends and the latest news. I believe that when asking the publics their opinion on a particular matter is should be done in confidentially, that the individual should be provided with a great deal of information and background into the topic, as well as be put under minimal pressure to actually give an opinion, in order to increase the chances of the individual saying what they truly believe, rather than what they think we want them to believe

The blog below gives individuals various ways to approach people when trying to gain an honest opinion

http://www.ereleases.com/prfuel/public-opinion-matters-in-public-relations/

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