Basic Premise

What Does Our Name, “Basic Premise,” Mean?

People often ask, what does the name “Basic Premise” mean?

A basic premise is how you assume the world works, without even thinking about it. For instance, we all just assume that gravity will keep us grounded—it’s a basic premise of our lives.

Successful companies regularly ask themselves, “What business are we really in?” In doing so, they’re checking their basic premise. In the nonprofit sector, today’s survivors — and tomorrow’s successes — will be those who periodically make sure their basic premises are both sound and operational (which aren’t the same thing).

Here are examples of “basic premises” that have informed past work I’ve done, and which is showcased on this Web site.

  • For democratic public policy change, citizens must understand the terms of the debate.
  • Activism and engagement can be contagious.
  • Large, powerful public institutions, whether government or NGOs, should be accountable to the public whose good they exist to serve.
  • Public fear can be channeled into productive community activity.
  • High quality content is always important.

Having a sound basic premise is no guarantee of success. On the other hand, working on the basis of deeply flawed assumptions — for instance, that there’s a good chance of winning the lottery— will, eventually, lead to failure.

And so, working with our clients, we like to start from the basics. Clarity, we’ve discovered, makes for powerful PR campaigns that stay on message.

We’d love to hear about your organization, and schedule a brainstorming session about your campaign or special project needs.


Ellen Freudenheim, MA, MPH
President & Founder

basic premise communications, LLC
Brooklyn, N.Y.



Ellen consistently produced high quality content for our baby-booomer oriented website. She understood our market, and was brimming with good ideas and useful contacts. ~ Gail Ross, Phd, Co-founder,

View Our Cases
Basic Premise LLC works on special projects and research-based PR initiatives.

    We write PR plans, brainstorm about positioning, and create content, in the form of E-books, blogs, and articles.

    Our focal areas are health and human rights, aging and the longevity revolution, and the celebration of local solutions to big picture problems.

    Clients use our work for public education, in lobbying for legislative change, and to influence thought leaders.

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