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Activity 14: A Tale of Two Routes
Instructions: In class we discussed one of the major theories of persuasion, the Elaboration
Likelihood Model (ELM). For this activity, you will apply your knowledge of the two routes of
processing proposed by the ELM (i.e., the central and peripheral routes) to identifying the extent
to which components of a sales pitch on the popular show Shark Tank encourage each of these
routes. Refer to class notes from Unit 13 (Persuasion and Public Communication) as well as the
Booth-Butterfield (n.d.) and O’Keefe (2012) readings from Unit 13 to help you complete this
activity.
Choose any sales pitch from Shark Tank during which entrepreneurs ask the Sharks to invest in
their product. You may choose any sales pitch that is available to you on Youtube. Then, respond
to the following:
(1) Identify 3 message factors from this clip that encouraged central route processing about
investing in the product and describe why they are relevant to the message argument of
investing in the product.
(2) Identify 3 message factors from this clip that encouraged peripheral route processing
about investing in the product and describe why each is a heuristic cue rather than a
message that supports the message argument of investing in the product.
(3) Are the Sharks more likely to process centrally or peripherally? Why? Make sure to
discuss this in terms of your motivation and your ability to process the message.
(4) When YOU watched this video, did you use central or peripheral route thinking? Why?
Make sure to discuss this in terms of your motivation and your ability to process the
message.

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