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The European Journal of Communication Research

Ed. by Averbeck-Lietz, Stefanie / d'Haenens, Leen

IMPACT FACTOR 2018: 0.707
5-year IMPACT FACTOR: 1.151

CiteScore 2018: 0.86

SCImago Journal Rank (SJR) 2018: 0.460
Source Normalized Impact per Paper (SNIP) 2018: 0.580

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Volume 36, Issue 2


The effects of verbal and nonverbal elements in persuasive communication: Findings from two multi-method experiments

Nikolaus Jackob / Thomas Roessing / Thomas Petersen
Published Online: 2011-05-31 | DOI: https://doi.org/10.1515/comm.2011.012


This article addresses the relationship between content, voice, and body language in persuasive communication and the contribution of these three elements of persuasive performances to its overall persuasiveness. Findings are presented from two separate laboratory experiments. In the first experiment three versions of a video displaying a speech were shown to three different groups of participants: (1) without vocal emphasis and without gestures of the speaker, (2) with vocal emphasis but without gestures, (3) with vocal emphasis and gestures. Audio tracks of the first two experimental conditions were later used in the second experiment to analyze the effects of vocal emphasis when no visual cues are present. Measurement included a questionnaire as well as Real Time Response-measurement (RTR). It was found that content dominates the effect of the speech; emphasis and gestures, however, improved the perception of some features of the speech, such as liveliness and power. Audio-only versions yielded similar results but were rated more favorably in general.

Keywords:: Persuasion; Rhetoric; Nonverbal Communication; Experiment; Real Time Response-Measurement

About the article

Published Online: 2011-05-31

Published in Print: 2011-06-01

Citation Information: Communications, Volume 36, Issue 2, Pages 245–271, ISSN (Online) 1613-4087, ISSN (Print) 0341-2059, DOI: https://doi.org/10.1515/comm.2011.012.

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