One prominent adviser told the candidate to sharpen his use of conservative code words and create “small pictures” — vivid imagery, in other words — to connect with voters. Another flew to Boston to say that Romney’s message is too businesslike and broad to capture the passion of angry Republican voters. Still others have gone on television and written opinion columns to hammer home what is becoming a common theme this year: that Romney has not been able to ignite a cause when the GOP is primed to become part of one…

After Tuesday, Romney’s team appears to be listening. There is agreement, one adviser said, that the candidate must liven up his road show, injecting energy into a stale stump and resuming the kind of town-hall events that let him interact with voters. He will hold his first such event since Jan. 13 on Friday in Portland, Maine. The state’s caucuses will end Saturday.

Romney is not expected to move too far to the right to accommodate the party base, the adviser said, adding, “You can’t make him who he’s not.” All of the Romney advisers interviewed declined to speak for attribution, saying they are not authorized to do so.