Case Studies Blog #2 – What changes your opinion?

In my case studies in PR Class, our instructor, Signy Gerrard asked me and my classmates to answer three questions in relation to public opinion.

What has made you change your opinion of a public figure, organization, or brand?  Please give one example.

A change of behaviour influences my opinion of a public figure, organization, or brand.  A behaviour change could be either acts of generosity or injustice that can sway my opinion about a public figure, organization, or brand.  Some organizations may over and beyond the call of duty to craft messages that create a positive memorable experience for their target audience or public.  At the same time, some organizations may do quite the opposite to intentionally deceive the public from their unscrupulous behaviour.

The organization that changed my mind is the World Wrestling Entertainment (WWE), primarily the community involvement of figurehead and professional wrestler John Cena with the Make-A-Wish Foundation.  Cena, the WWE, and the Make-a-Wish Foundation have worked together to arrange memorable experiences for children with life-threatening medical conditions.  Regardless of one’s view of the WWE, one can truly respect the community work and involvment of the organization and brand.

What factors have influenced your decision to do or not do something?  Please give one example.

The most important factor that influenced me to do something is when that issue or concept personally affects me.  Signy Gerrard admitted that in general, people are inherently selfish.  When people feel that they are personally affected by an issue or idea, they will increasingly take action to change it.  People take action when an issue or topic will have a direct positive or negative impact on one’s personal life.

The example I chose was being an active participant of the social committee in the Public Relations and Marketing Program at the University of Winnipeg.  I decided to become part of the program’s social committee to contribute to the ways myself and fellow classmates engaged with each other.  By becoming an active member of the social committee, I felt that my views contributed to the decision-making process that had a direct impact on the event-planning process this academic year.  At the end of the day, I felt that my contribution would enhance my experience in the program.

What has made you think differently about an issue?  Please give one example.

I will think differently about an issue if it directly affects me or a large number of people.  The greatest example in my lifetime has been the lasting effects of September 11, 2001, when two planes slammed into the Twin Towers in New York City.  The world stood still.  This was the first time in my lifetime that a truly global issue of terrorism affected us at home.

People travel by plane on a daily basis with the underlying expectation that they will arrive at their destination in one piece.  Planes crashing into buildings is unnatural.    Never before had I thought that two commercial airliners would crash into skyscrapers.  When the buildings came down, it made me think differently of the world and our role within it.



One thought on “Case Studies Blog #2 – What changes your opinion?

  1. 1. I also said that an act of generosity changes the way I see an organization. It is amazing how engaging in corporate social responsibility can change how an organization is viewed. By doing something positive an organization can help ensure they control the message and are seen positively. I talked about WestJet’s Christmas Miracle; you can check out my post here:

    Would you be able to elaborate more on the relationship between WWE and Make-A-Wish? I’ve never heard of the partnership before and am curious as to how it works.

    2. It is interesting how even though people may be inherently selfish, we are also influenced to do things to better the community around us – unless we are just telling ourselves that when really we are trying to make ourselves look good and feel good?

    3. I think that an issue will more directly me the closer I can relate to the event. In the case of 9/11, would the event have affected you the same as if it had happened in the Middle East, far away from Canada? The closer to home something hits, the greater we will be affected.
    You mention that 9/11 made you think differently about the world and your role in it, how so?


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