Each Wednesday at 10am EST, we host a Weekly Communication Support Check-In to share best practices and discuss with each other how we are communicating differently (or the same) during the current social and health crisis. Here are some notes from this week’s meet-up that may help you navigate what’s most important to communicate now.

What’s It All About?

With so many changes and pivot plans being activated, it’s a good time to revisit your Core Message. This is the “all-in-one” narrative that explains your work in a nutshell. It forms the basis for boilerplate language on your website, written correspondence, grant proposals, etc. – any communication that needs the “About Us” information.

Watch the video for the full conversation about Core Message, the new Core Message Builder Tool, and even more discussion about how to facilitate group editing of boilerplate language. Key takeaways below.


  • Remember Outlines? They are still really important. Don’t worry about doing complicated traditional outlines with Roman numerals. What’s most important is that you get down a general plan for these key things:

    • What’s the “gist” of your Core Message?
    • Starter
    • Beginning
    • Middle 
    • End
    • Call to Action

  • The NEW Core Message Builder Tool can help you break down your “About Us” statement into a flow gets across the most informative and engaging info.
  • Thank you to Meghan Van Dyk for sharing her perspectives as a journalist and media advocate during today’s meeting. Journalists use an “inverted pyramid” to plan their stories. We also discussed a few other visual ways to envision story flow – see the video.

  • Don’t edit & write at the same time. After you create your outline, let yourself take a first cut at narrative and flow without worrying about picking apart the actual words and sentence structures. If you know that something isn’t right, just circle it/highlight it and work on it during the next Draft.

  • After you have a Draft you like, challenge yourself to go back and cut it down by 25%. Look at your word count and see what you can do to make everything more concise.


Join the Weekly Communication Support Zoom on Weds @10am EST