• analysis comes prior to planning
  • recall “MICS”: meaning, identity, content, structure
  • analysis for narrative strategy must consider each
  • questions about meaning:
    • why is this narrative being told?
    • what is the objective?
    • who or what does this rendering of events serve?
    • what actions does it legitimate?
  • narratives hold events together to give each event meaning in relation to others
  • events that don’t contribute to the meaning are left out
  • people typically only register events, information, etc that reinforce their current narrative
  • authors can’t help unsubstantiated swipe at Russia, even though they’re demonstrably better at this
  • there are no defensive narratives; offense vs offense
  • when analyzing adversarial narratives, ask “what meaning does an adversarial narrative wish to convey?”
  • what is the meaning I want an audience to take away from my communication?
  • 5-Ws apply to narratives
  • narratives are more effective when they touch more layers of identity
  • authors focus on pain, fear, and trauma; these perspectives only work for short term manipulation
  • authors fail to address higher order impacts of their suggestions, eg OWS PSYOP destroying the US
  • what information to use varies by culture
    • Western audiences prefer facts, metrics, and points
    • but often weaving with individual stories works better
  • authors seem unaware that Western business narratives do that
  • influence requires attention
  • narrative structure is culturally dependent


  1. Target audience analysis forcuses on demographics, wealth, etc; narrative identity analysis additionally focuses on identity
  2. MICS = Meaning, Identity, Content, Structure