It’s commonly thought that if messages explain the problem, audiences—often broad, loosely defined audiences—will care.

Some of the great myths in communications work:

1) More statistics are not more persuasive. Messages using deeply held, shared values resound more with audiences;

2) There is no such thing as a general public, so target and define your audience and media lists accordingly; and

3) Most people know what the problem is. So, elevate your solutions.

The following questions may help you identify core components of your own compelling messages:

    • What’s the problem?
    • What are the immediate impacts of the problem on your community?
    • What are the immediate causes?
    • What are the root causes?
    • Who is responsible?
    • Why does it matter?
    • What is the solution?

Part of your role as an organizer is to advance your community’s own powerful solutions.

Editors note: Check out one example of how communities in Alaska are moving a powerful message for community health.  And read more guiding questions for framing and messaging here


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