Sunday, July 17, 2005

Framing the message

One of the first things new DFL chair Brian Melendez has done is work on developing the DFL message. (See the Minnesota Stories Project as an example). One important step in doing that is deciding how to "frame" the message. Framing is NOT the message, but it does shape people's world view. That way they are more open to your message. A frame has to correlate to a voter's life and must be consistent and repeated.

Example: Republicans have framed the message with "giving money to the government is a bad thing. It's your money! Keep it." Of course, Republicans are happy to use the roads and other benefits of government investment, but don't want to pay for it.

Focusing on trying to say negative things about that frame is not going to change people's minds. Instead, you need to create your own frame. One of the more powerful suggestions at the DFL Central Committee meeting in Alexandria is this:
The DFL is the defender and protector of what is good in Minnesota.
Republicans are the plunderers and squanderers of Minnesota's legacy.

That frame exposes the current Republican agenda for what it is and makes it relevant to all voters. All messages then get delivered in the context of that frame.

Interesting stuff.


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