Identification of Target Audience:Audience categories are based upon more than age. If we identify the make-up of ouraudience, we are more able to ensure that we are targeting them specifically through ouruse of image design technique.There are a number of theories which relate to constructing an audience, or the make-up ofthe audience: • Graeme Burton identifies the difference between socially grouped audiences (e.g. grouped by age, gender, place in society, etc) and media grouped audiences (e.g. grouped by their relationship with the media, such as computer users, film goers and so on). Socially grouped audiences are explored in a minute, but consider your audience is there a way of reaching them- do their interests relate to a particular media product? If you are selling a CD for example, you are targeting a media grouped audience. • Hartley expands upon Burton’s classification of socially grouped audiences. He identifies 7 subjectives. If any of them apply to your audience, you have identified a more specific audience and should offer motives appropriate to that audience. The more specific your audience, the more you can target them exactly. 1. self: audiences can be grouped by their aspirations, etc. for example, if you target ambitious business people, you can offer a motive such as performance enhancement. 2. gender: there are associated motives depending on gender- we traditionally offer different gains to these audiences, or use different methods of targeting them (see later). 3. age group: different age groups, stereotypically have different priorities, needs and aims in life. You need to identify the age range you’re targeting as the methods you use depend on the group. 4. family: the place in the family, e.g. parent or child, will present a different way of targeting the group. E.g. a speeding announcement is better aimed at parents as they have a point of reference with losing a child. 5. class: again, different social classes are seen to have different priorities. You need to target a specific group in order to offer appropriate motives, e.g. save money, look sophisticated etc. 6. nation: the country a group come from and its style. Most western societies (e.g. Britain, America, France) follow common ideals, such as work hard to achieve your aims. Cultural Imperialism refers to the influence of American Media values on the world, e.g. beautiful = slim and sexy. Other cultures follow different values. You will all be using western values. 7. ethnicity: the ethnic grouping of your audience may play a role in your choice of images/actors and messages. If you are targeting society generally, make sure that your production reflects this.
• Fiske adds a further 5 factors to be considered when identifying audience: 1. education: the level of education received by the audience can offer different ways of targeting them. E.g. Uni students aged 24 will have need a different reason to follow your message than 24 year olds who left school at 16. 2. religion: are you targeting a particular religious group, or will your work present values common to all religions? 3. political allegiance: different political groups present different priorities in life. Labour for example apparently focuses on equality and the ‘common man’ whereas Conservative focuses on the ability for individuals to succeed if they work hard. Most of the people currently vote Labour. Can this influence your decisions? 4. region: there is a big difference between London and Leicester when looking at values, fashions, etc. London is the more powerful, so following values promoted by the capital might be a good idea. 5. urban vs rural: this is town vs country. There are different motives for each section. Most people live in town, therefore a focus on something like image is valid.Social Status Classifications:The social status of an audience group has an impact of the motives you will want to offer.Most of society falls into the (C) D and E categories.A higher managerial and professionalB middle managerial and professionalC1 supervisory, junior management and professionalC2 skilled manual workerD semi-skilled and unskilled manual workersE pensioners, lower grade workers and the unemployed.Once you have your audience make-up, you need to identify what motives are appropriatefor this group. This allows you to look at engaging the audience’s interest and to offerappropriate motives/reasons for them to listen to your message.