On Message
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“This book is a road map for success in creating powerful, lasting messages that will help you stand out in an information-overloaded world. Use it as a manual for developing winning communications that really connect with your audience. Whether it's the White House, community outreach or a board room these principals resonate” —Donnie Fowler, political TV commentator, CEO of Tech4America, co-founder The Democracy Labs, former Vice President of TechNet

“Today, new streams of information are trained on us like so many fire hoses. In self-defense we filter most of it out. What gets through? It’s not data, facts, or slogans. It’s a good story. In On Message, Zach Friend shows us how great narrative evokes emotion, spurs engagement, and creates action. Best of all, Friend practices what he preaches: this book is loaded with stories from business, politics, and yes, even children’s literature, to bring his concepts to life in ways we can all relate to and use.” —Gary Stockman, former CEO of global public relations firm Porter Novelli


“The great film producer Richard Zanuck once said, 'The most important thing is the story. . . . Not the script' It's the story people remember, the reason they love a movie. Zach Friend, something of a genius, figured out that's not just true about our favorite movies. It's true about everything anyone wants to tell you—or sell you. 'Things go better with Coke' promises you not just a great-tasting drink but a great meal experience.' Zanuck was right. So is Zach Friend.” —Chris Matthews, Host of MSNBC's Hardball

“Whether calling upon his own experience with the Barack Obama campaign or mining wonderful nuggets of dialogue from quirky movies like Best in Show, Zach Friend has written an entertaining and insightful guide to crafting messages in business, life, and politics. And as much as I personally chafe as a reporter over excessive message discipline in politics, I have to admit that in the real world his advice is dead-on.” —Walter Shapiro, former Washington Bureau Chief for Salon.com


In this era of information overload and real-time communication where anyone can publish and broadcast to millions of people with the click of a button, there is no shortage of people talking about the need to get their message across, or having a “narrative.” But for business, marketing, and political campaigns, there is no definitive how-to on crafting a compelling narrative that achieves lasting results. And without a narrative, no amount of framing, complex messaging, or facts will succeed.

In On Message, Zach Friend solves that problem, illustrating how effective communicators understand the power of narrative, emotion, and simple messaging, and posits that having a personal, emotional narrative is the basis for all successful communication.

Drawing on Friend’s own experience and insights from politics, advertising, communications, entertainment, and social psychology, On Message provides a simple process for applying the powerful principles behind crafting a narrative, ultimately paving the path to success. 


Paperback: 230 pages
Publisher: Turner (September 17, 2013)
Language: English
ISBN-10: 162045372X
ISBN-13: 978-1620453728