Nancy Duarte writes about her decision to create a free multimedia version of her best-selling book, Resonate: Present Visual Stories that Transform Audiences.

resonate multimedia

You don’t get many defining moments in life, but I had a big one a few years ago. All my life I’ve been passionate about helping people communicate world-changing ideas that they’ve kept hidden inside of them. This passion drove me to analyze hundreds of speeches that had immense impact on the world throughout history. But I wanted to come up with a shape for these speeches to help codify the art and science that made them work.

One Saturday morning, I finally found a shape that worked, and I cried from happiness – and I’m not ashamed to admit it. That shape mapped the tension and release pattern of great speeches, which move back and forth between “What Is” and “What Could Be” themes. This idea formed the basic concept behind Resonate: Present Visual Stories that Transform Audiences, which I finally published in 2010.

I’ve reached another defining moment as my firm and I release Resonate in a new multimedia format today. I now understand the media conundrum authors are facing: visual books are extremely popular, but publishers haven’t figured out how to turn them into compelling digital experiences. I found that there wasn’t one single distribution platform that works on desktop and devices that’s easy to build in or to use. We’re in an era when publishers need to become their own agencies, and agencies need to be publishers. I believe so deeply in presenting content in a way that’s customized to the reader that I decided to offer this version of Resonate free of charge.

The new multimedia version of Resonate is available on Apple’s iBooks for iPad and Mac users, and in a unique HTML5 format optimized for any platform, device or browser. Both formats have 37 immersive videos, 13 case studies, 20 beautiful interactive graphics, plus dozens of audio clips, quizzes and interactive widgets that let you interact with the analysis of famous speeches like Martin Luther King Jr.’s “I have a dream” speech or Steve Jobs’ 2007 iPhone release. You can also click through 35 “Director’s Cut” notes for more personal insights from me and details about how my firm likes to work (and play).

This is the first free interactive business book made available on the open, flexible HTML5 platform. Using this format for Resonate gave us the flexibility for increased speed and a more compelling viewing experience through asynchronous page loads. Content can be easily searched, bookmarked or embedded into presentations, with the option to share content from the book with friends on Twitter and Facebook.

I’m excited to be the first author to release a business book on these interactive platforms, and my hope is that Resonate raises the bar for what a cross-media, multimedia-rich book should be. I loved creating Resonate because I found that you can’t be a student of story and not be changed yourself. My hope is that as you dig in and get caught up in the power of story, you’ll be changed like I was when I wrote it.

Explore the browser-based book for free: Resonate

Download the book from Apple’s iBooks for free: iTunes

Receive a complimentary eCourse module: After reading Resonate, put your skills to the test and dive into creating your own presentations by accessing a module from the new Duarte eCourse. Sign up here to receive a free enrollment key.

Contact Duarte