Good messages are the foundation of good communications. They clarify concepts and make abstract ideas concrete and meaningful. They help audiences of all kinds keep the big picture in mind while encouraging people to care about what you're doing. Good messages can also effectively address issues or potential areas of concern, using the principles and best practices of risk communication.  
At Seed Stories, we help you create key messages that highlight the positive aspects of your work. We start by asking "What do people most want to know about this topic?" Then we draft simple statements, supported by credible statistics and stories to illustrate them.  
Messages and 'message maps' with well-organized supporting information can be used as the basis for all of your communications strategies and materials including websites, media interviews, publications, and presentations.
An example of our work:  

For one client, we took existing messages about agriculture technology and made them more specific to fit the realities of farming and food in Asia. General messages about safe farming practices were expanded with information about specific training programs in the region, and broad statements about food safety were supplemented with information about fresh (or ‘wet’) markets that are common across Asia.
Strong messages
  • 'start with why'
  • incorporate stories and images
  • are updated often

Building on key messages, we create powerful stories that catch and hold people’s attention, while inspiring respect and support for your work.  
We work with your existing resources to develop new content, choosing words and images that are accurate, and at the same time meaningful and easily understandable to your audiences. One of the best ways to do this is to focus on the real people involved in agriculture and food production around the world.  
Seed Stories content brings new life to all your materials – fact sheets, videos, case studies, brochures, speeches, presentations, and websites.
An example of our work:  

Seed Stories worked with video and photo crews on behalf of an international organization to gather stories from small-scale vegetable and citrus farmers in China, India and Indonesia about their use of agriculture technology. For another project, we developed case studies about an agriculture association’s successful public outreach activities through interviews with members around the world in order to highlight successes, best practices and lessons learned. Content from both projects has been used in on-line and print publications.

At Seed Stories, we know how to orchestrate effective communications strategies that build interest and support for agriculture programs around the world.  
The first phase of strategy development is to assess your current situation and issues, existing communications and the views of your stakeholder audiences. We’ll then develop the full package of key messages, outreach plans, and informational materials that highlight the most important aspects of your work while preparing for any tough questions that may arise.  
From planning through implementation, Seed Stories ensures that new strategies fit your organization’s culture and style, and can be sustained by your own staff when our work together is complete.

An example of our work:  

Launching a new agriculture product these days means taking into account stakeholders in farming, food and political communities. Seed Stories is currently working with a client on a comprehensive communications strategy to launch a new product. The strategy includes plans to create key messages, develop a product identity, reach out to key stakeholders, manage media interest, and support key milestones in the research and development process. Seed Stories is also helping to build capacity within the client's organization for implementing the strategy.

Best Practice
Why is it so difficult to communicate about agriculture? And what can we do to communicate more clearly, so that people understand and support our work?  
Seed Stories has a unique perspective on these questions, drawing on our corporate experience, our work with clients and ideas from other sectors. We are committed to turning the answers into best practices in agriculture communication and sharing these broadly.  
Seed Stories best practices presentations and training modules provide information on communications concepts, such as risk communications, together with message mapping and other exercises that immediately put the big ideas to practical use.  
Our best practices can be used by communications professionals, scientists and company representatives alike to explain your work to funding agencies, community members, the media or other stakeholders. Each session and presentation is designed to be relevant to the knowledge and needs of the audience and can be customized for one-on-one training as well as groups.
An example of our work:  
Seed Stories worked with trainees in one research institute to help them understand what makes agriculture difficult for non-experts to comprehend, and how to make themselves more easily understood. Together we developed the outline of a communications strategy for a new agriculture product, including key messages, issues and audiences. The trainees left the session with a short list of simple actions they can take to make their communications more effective.