Question's 4&5 Audience Who Would Be The Audience For Your Media Product? How Did You Attract/Address Your Audience?
In planning our final piece, we created a “Audience Profile” so we knew who we were aiming to appeal to. This was it…. Audience Profile Male or female Aged 12-34 Western Likes to stay up late Likes to be scared, loves the thrill Not scared to go out on their own at night
After doing research we felt that these were the sort of demographics of people who would be interested in Horror Films. ( male or female…12-34…etc) Using the socio-economic model we felt we could further identify our target audience. We felt they would fall in the groups c1 downwards. These people tend to have a little more time on their hands, and in some cases eg students, they have more disposable income to spend on things like films. By looking back at out graph ( shown previously) this matches that profile as the average earnings were 0-30K a year. As for psychographics, we felt that in Cross Cultural Consumer Characteristics, the audience would possibly be mainstream – if the film could be made big and commercialised, as horror films are already quite popular and accepted in our culture- or else, it would appeal to individuals or radicals (little bit rebellious) The latest in lifestyle analysis, has created some tools to help define market research. It defines values, attitudes and beliefs. The LifeMatrix is one of these tools. Using this, I feel our target audience would fall in the first segment –Tribe Wired : digital, free-spirited, creative young singles.
A Typical Audience Member From this its quite easy to create our typical audience. Fun Easy-going Slightly Unique, but doesn’t deviate too far from mainstream Young Free-spirited Has free time on their hands Loves the thrill of horror
This means our beginnings of a film, should be appropriate for this target audience, in order for them to want to watch it, and more importantly in the media industry; pay for it. In order to attract and appeal to this audience, therefore, it meant we had to include typical functions/conventions of horror films - Scary, blood, gore, tense music, darkness. We had typical haunting music, dark scenes, tension and drama. So a typical horror audience should be attracted to this. ( other conventions mentioned in Q1) To make it more interesting, it also needed other things such as enigma codes. Which the introduction of the knife was meant to be. As well as the whole of the flash forwards. The audience were supposed to question what happened and be intrigued into this girls life.
In theory, if we had got this correct, the audience should have been interested in this and wanted to watch more. Our film should have appealed to our audience. To test this we asked a group of 12 people – students aged 16-18, male and female - who really should have been part of our ideal audience, to watch our film and then anonymously give us their comments and feedback. If we were successful with the address of our horror film, the target audience should have liked and accepted the values and messages that we intended.
The feedback we got from the comments were extremely useful. If this had been real, in the film industry we could have taken these comments and made some final edits to improve it further. However I will just take these comments with me for future. T’was cool Good techniques, effect things Couldn’t really read writing =[ Would have changed the name to “static” Part from that it was wicked Good use of sound and cinematography creates a really tense atmosphere and the fast paced editing really involves the viewer and immediately grabs their attention. No bad points =] Audio of the static bit loud… Like the swing faded bit… Don’t really get the story line but looked good … =] xx The swing part dragged on for maybe too long but the effects were really good. The different cuts fitted in well together. Likes- Love the blurring of the swing @ beginning Like the sounding Like camera angle when girl has a go at the camera and shakes it Good connections Dislikes- Scene where guy goes to kill girl doesn’t look as good or effective as the rest of film Good use of sound climax Good camera effects as characters overlap A little hard to read titles behind static Positive- nice techniques with the children fading out on swings good music soundtracks – matched film genre Negative- more realistic characters/costume + Good effects (girl on swing) + Liked the static screen, but don’t really know why its there! + Good shots Good use of music and sound and cinematography Well edited; smooth, flowed Was a slightly confusing storyline BUT the music choice was very good, it built up tension & was scary. It looked really good with the girl on the swing and the effects you used. <3 -Really good motion edits - Camera shudder when she’s angry and the girls talking to the camera “insults” are really good. - Some music was a little cheesy (was it meant to be a bit funny?) but still good! - Really loved the filming, smooth continuity editing (especially on the swings) x Titles not quite visible x good sound use x good use of echoing laugh x very fast moving x storyline a bit random/confusing I Liked It
I’m quite happy and confident with these comments. They are all very insightful and helpful. Overall I think that the audience seemed to like it. All 12 comments had positive things to say and generally it looks as though they enjoyed it. Over View:- There was a few comments about the “static”. One person said it was too loud, 2 people said it was a little hard to read the titles from and one person said they didn’t really know why it was there! My feelings on this are that those who mentioned the titles have a fair point. I myself thought it was slightly hard to read, but to overcome that we left the titles up on screen for quite a while. I think this compensated for the slight visual problems, and did make it easier. The font was also made white, as this was the clearest colour on the static background. However I can see there point. The sound issue I don’t see as much of a problem as the audio on the static was meant to be loud to stand out and cause massive impact. 5 other people commented on the sound ( not music) as being “good” or that they “liked it” so I’m not overly worried by one comment against it.
As for mode of reading, 4 of our audience ( including the person who didn’t understand the point of the static) commented that they didn’t understand, or that they found it confusing. This means it was aberrant reading. This is quite a bad thing for us, as it means they didn’t understand the messages in the film. As our film was shown to students, it should have been preferred reading as this is our target audience. My feelings are that the film was very fast paced, and a lot of information was introduced very quickly. Therefore I can see how this would be quite confusing. I think the only way to overcome this, would be to show the rest of the film. 3 members commented on the fast-pace of the film, but these were all positive, mentioning how it made it tense/scary and involved the audience.
The reactions most obvious to me form reading the comments, are that 10 out of the 12 comments mentioned the edits/effects/techniques. And all of these were positive. I found this extremely promising as the editing was aspect I was most worried about. All the comments mentioned that the editing was smooth or that the effects were good, which is something I’m very pleased about. The effects on the swing seemed to particularly appeal to those who watched it, as there are 6 mentions of this, again all positive. However one negative about the swings was that it “dragged on for maybe too long”. This was another thing I had concerns about. We shortened the swing clip many times before the final one, as we also felt it was too long. In fact I think we actually halved its time. As the rest of the film was so fast-paced, I feel that if we’d made the beginning shorter as well the binary contrast wouldn’t have been so obvious and it could have made the film opening even more confusing.
Finally there are the comments on our choice of music ( not sound). There are 6 comments specifically for the music, 5 are positive, 1 negative. The negative commenter felt that the music was “ a little cheesy (was it meant to be a bit funny?) but still good”. The rest felt that the music fitted in with our genre and that it was a “good use of music” and the sound climax was good also. My feelings are that the music was quite in-keeping with the genre. I can see why it could be perceived as “cheesy” as it was made very dramatic, almost to the point of being over-the-top. This was done purposefully as horror genres are usually loud and tense. I wanted to make a point of the music, as it emphasises what’s happening on the screen.
All of this feedback was very useful, and the reactions seemed positive. The biggest worry was that there was some aberrant reading. We really should only have got this from people outside of our target audience. So… I got reactions from a small group of people outside the target audience to see what these reactions were. It’s here that the opinions are still important, but it’s not as important for the audience to enjoy or accept what we are showing. These 2 video clips are from one man and one woman. Both outside of the age range of our target audience, and in the socio-economic grouping, they are A and B’s. They are basically not the target audience at all.
Again I found these comments extremely helpful. Interestingly a lot of the issues brought up were similar to those of our target audience. However I don’t think we got out target audience wrong as neither of these commenter's were too keen on horror films and seemed to be a lot more horrified by the abuse they saw, and not so keen to see the end if it was going to continue to be “disturbing”. Which a psychological horror film would. Once again it was commented on the editing or “technical bits” of the clip. Both male and female liked the editing, thought it was good, and the fade in on the swing was something “they’d not seen before”. They both enjoyed what they watched although Gill thought it was very sad and appeared to be a lot more shocked by what she saw, than our target audience did. Like some of our target audience, Nick didn’t like the static or “crunchy bits”, although he didn’t say why. Although they both understood what they saw, neither liked, or would seem to want to accept the messages they saw. Making this quite oppositional reading for people not in our target audience.
Summary ;- Overall I think we had the correct target audience for our film. The detailed target audience research helped us to mould what we needed, and who we needed it for. Although everyone who watched it said that they enjoyed it, those outside the target audience would be less keen to watch the entire film. This suggests to me, that our target audience were in the right brackets. I also think we reached our target audience quite well. The comments were positive, and it would seem like the audience approved of what they saw. Sadly it was not preferred reading for all that saw it, so I feel it wasn’t a complete success. However I think that issue could be easily addressed. If we’d found another way to join her flash forwards together, rather than the static, and not edited them together so quickly, we would have erased all of the negative points.
My opinion is that our film worked well, and most of the opinions from other people demonstrate this too. Therefore I think our audience research, and our address to the audience went well, and I’m pleased with the results.