Over the past few years, we've worked with clients on innovative messaging for their issues. Much of it we can't share here because of confidentiality, but here are some projects that we can share publicly...
The Message Compass
When an organization has a new approach, a new issue, or a new campaign, it often needs a new message. Before the talking points, the website, or the written materials (and definitely before any media outreach), there must be a strategic direction for the message. At ConwayStrategic we call this the Message Compass. It provides the fundamental underpinning, architecture, and framing of a message to ensure consistent communication throughout a campaign.
ConwayStrategic has worked with opinion researchers, psychologists, and cognitive linguists to develop groundbreaking, effective Message Compasses on some of the toughest issues of our day, including marriage equality, domestic partnerships, and reproductive health.
Violence and reproductive health: different issues, different places to go for help, and different conversations. That’s the way it works today in politics, health care, and the public discourse - but that’s not the way it works in real life. Not for millions of women, especially young adults, whose reproductive health is affected by sexual and domestic violence.
ConwayStrategic has been working with the Family Violence Prevention Fund to create kNOwMore, a project that makes the link between violence, coercion, and their reproductive health outcomes. The integrated effort combines policy development, public education, and partnerships to tell women's stories and create solutions. See more of the work here.
Let California Ring
Creating a campaign to increase people's comfort with gay marriage had to be about more than an ad. Beginning with groundbreaking research, we uncovered the deep-seated conflicts our target audience held around not only marriage, but also gays and lesbians themselves.
Let California Ring was the campaign that asked the target audience - a sympathetic but conflicted straight person - to walk in the shoes of a person who can't marry the one they love. It provided an aspirational theme for supporters to rally around, and provided a new way of talking about same-sex marriage.
Domestic Partnerships in Wisconsin
After a ballot measure outlawed same-sex marriage or anything "substantially similar," Fair Wisconsin, the state LGBT advocacy organization, was seeking to achieve limited legal protections for gay and lesbian couples in Wisconsin. With a smart legislative strategy and a supportive governor and legislature, they needed to ensure that their message and media strategy would energize their supporters and persuade those in the middle.
ConwayStrategic worked with Greenberg Quinlan Rosner research to devise effective, winning messages and develop a Message Compass. We provided PR strategy and ongoing support in media outreach, trained spokespeople, and developed written matierials.
The result? Fair Wisconsin dominated the message environment from the moment the legislation was introduced. Media coverage consistently included FW's messages, editorial boards overwhelmingly supported the plan and reflected the message frame, and even legislators used the key messages. Domestic partnership protections are now available to couples in Wisconsin.