Research-Informed Communication Strategies

AIR focuses on communicating and engaging with intended audiences to influence their behavior with the ultimate goal of improving individual and community well-being and advancing health equity. Our team has expertise in evidence-based communication strategies, public health and behavior change communication, communication research, cross-sector collaboration, digital media and web design, technical writing, and publications and creative development. Our work spans national campaigns and comprehensive communication support programs and includes social media strategy, community engagement, and development of technical publications. Our clients include the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services (including Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services, National Institutes of Health, and the Assistant Secretary for Planning and Evaluation), Office of Disability and Employment Policy, universities including Gallaudet, and many nonprofit organizations including Planned Parenthood Federation of America.

We help audiences understand complex issues. We work closely with clients to translate complex information, including health information, into easy-to-understand information and engaging content. We implement multifaceted engagement and dissemination strategies across traditional, digital, mobile, and social media channels and integrate them with national and community partnerships. We often work closely with subject matter experts to communicate evidence and develop materials and programs for various audiences including vulnerable, at-risk populations as well as health care providers, patients, caregivers, policy makers, teachers, parents and students. We work across sectors and understand the opportunities and challenges associated with bringing diverse stakeholders together in a way that provides common language, a shared agenda and advances common outcomes.

Audience research is at the heart of what we do. We understand that communication is about much more than the messages we seek to disseminate. It is also about the audience we are trying to reach and influence. Audience research is at the heart of what we do from development, to execution, through evaluation. We involve persons with lived experience to inform our work, and conduct and apply formative research to drive strategy and develop audience-based behavior change models. We integrate the cultural models approach into our formative research, which allows us to uncover hidden barriers to effective communication, understand audiences on a deeper level, and make progress on issues that have been previously considered “stuck.” We use a variety of strategies to determine the reach and impact of our clients’ communication programs, and we use data to inform communication strategies.

Change is more than high-impact communication. We know that true change comes from more than high-impact communication. Ensuring that critical health information is delivered to people and trusted messengers and credible influencers has become essential in an age when communication channels are highly segmented and people seek out information from a wide array of sources. Over the years, we have built partnerships with public health practitioners across the United States; major organizations representing clinicians and advocates of all kinds; advocacy and community-based organizations, public health departments across the nation; universities; and representatives of the audiences we serve. We work hand in hand with our clients to engage communities—both online and on the street.

Eloisa Montes
Principal Communications Specialist