Developing Narratives

Developing Narratives

Help applying an established narrative to your issue or campaign.

For many broad issue areas, powerful narratives have already been written. Our Story can help you apply and adopt those narratives to your specific issue or issue campaign. The result will be a narrative guide that you can use in all your work on that issue.

Help developing a new narrative for your key issue areas.

Our Story can work with you to develop and refine a powerful narrative for your key issues. In doing so we will start with your values and core beliefs as you define them. We will be informed by other related, existing narratives and by public opinion research when helpful. The result will be a narrative that guides your organization’s communications.

Help developing a narrative for your state.

One major focus of Our Story is to help state leaders develop a shared narrative for their state. A state narrative is grounded in the shared values of participating organizations and in your state’s particular history, politics and culture. We will provide support, consultation and training, drawing directly on the expertise of other state narrative projects and our extensive grounding in national issue narratives.

  • We worked with groups in Colorado to develop their own overall economic narrative along with specific issue versions:
    You can link to the Colorado Economic Story
    And learn about the process of developing it and training groups to use.
  • Washington State’s Heroes’ Narrative is one example of a state narrative.

Help you use public opinion research smartly.

Many organizations use public opinion research to develop messages. We can help you get much more out of public opinion research – and avoid common pitfalls. Those include: thinking that the highest tested message is always the best; testing alternative messages instead of combined messages; recommending messages that contradict your values; and misunderstanding key audiences.

How we use public opinion research in narrative development.

Our narratives are aimed at promoting public understanding and support of progressive core beliefs. Public opinion research can be helpful in two ways:

1. It can help us understand the ways that different audiences understand the world now.

2. It can help test how different audiences react to alternative messages that express our core beliefs and our ideas.


We do not use public opinion research to tell us what’s popular. We use public opinion research as a tool to help make what we believe popular.
To learn more about polling read “10 Things to be Aware of in Using Polling to Guide Messages”


Please click here to find out how we can help you develop more powerful narratives