For the last several years we have worked on creating the most effective messaging strategies, content, and training to:
- Neutralize attackers
- Turn non-supporters into supporters
- Turn supporters into champions.
After working with dozens of companies and other organizations and studying many more, and testing/refining our approach in every medium imaginable with the general public, I am confident that we have developed a system that, if widely adopted in the industry, would transform it from a national thought follower to a national thought leader in the energy debate.
After spending just a few weeks meeting with top executives in Houston, the energy capital of the world, I realize that I have not done nearly enough to share our system and how well it works.
Thus, I have decided to do two things.
First I am explaining our system to a degree I have never done publicly.
Second, I am making a standalone version our system available, for free, to every organization—so that they can use it to create better communications strategies, persuasive messages, employee training, and executive advocacy.
Today, I want to share our methodology for communications strategy.
Fundamentals of Communications Strategy
At CIP, we are known for our pro-human, big-picture messaging, which we believe is unmatched in neutralizing attackers, turning non-supporters into supporters, and supporters into champions. But for that message or any message to be used effectively, it must be part of a broader strategy—a results-based communications strategy based on clear metrics and proven methods of persuasion.
Too often, organizations use hope-based communications strategies with little/no ROI-related measurement using traditional, ineffectual messages and methods of persuasion. For example, it is common practice to delegate the task of persuasive energy messaging to agencies who are not even themselves convinced of fossil fuels’ goodness. It is also common practice to default to television ads instead of looking at far more cost-effective options.
I have found that every strategy must carefully consider a set of questions I call “the 10 Ms.”
I ask these questions in our Stakeholder Strategy Sessions to elicit all the relevant goals and facts needed to make a results-based communications strategy.
Now I want to encourage teams throughout the industry to use these questions themselves on any project at any time with what I call the Stakeholder Strategizer tool.
You can download it here in Word format so that it’s easy to fill in.
If you’re not in energy communications you still might find it interesting. And if you know anyone in energy communications, please forward it to them.
If you fill one in and want my feedback, just email me.