Defining an audience task 2 copy 1


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Defining an audience task 2 copy 1

  1. 1. Critical approaches– Task 2 Creating for an audience Patrick Gouldsbrough
  2. 2. Target audiences Q Magazine With 473,000 readers of the magazine, Q has become one of the most popular niche market magazines in the UK. The content is niche because it focuses on one area/interest, instead of a wide range of topics. With the ABC1 socio-economic demographic been targeted most, Q will make sure the content mainly includes formal lexis and a professional layout, so it will appeal to the ABC1 target audience. The average age of a reader of Q magazine is 29, this data enables Q to make a magazine to appeal to this demographic. The media producers of Q will make sure they generate a magazine that looks young and fresh, but not so young and colourful that it puts off the older part of the demographic. Last thing that the credentials (right) state are that males out buy females on this particular product (75%/25%). The producers of Q magazine will then analyse these figures and decide to amend the features of the magazine to suit a male audience. The layout, colours, fonts and images may be some of the features that could be changed to appeal to the demographic. Usually, Q magazine successfully appeal to the demographic, due to the sales figures rising in the past few years. They tend to keep the customer (majority males) satisfied by putting male cover stars on the front, while using a layout and house style that will appeal to this particular audience.
  3. 3. Target audiences Top Gear At 1.7 million readers, Top Gear is one of the biggest niche market magazine in the UK, which tops Q magazine by 4 times the amount of readers. Top Gear has a majority of ABC1 socio economic readers compared to C2DE. However, Q magazine had a 68% ABC1 viewership, while Top Gear have 55%. This, in essence, means that Top Gear must, and do, use mostly formal lexis for the majority of articles. However, the close to half statistic tied to C2DE means more informal language will be used in this popular motoring magazine, compared to Q magazine. The age demographic for this media product has a greater range than Q magazine, instead of having one average age, Top Gear has an age range. As you can see on the right hand side, the majority of consumers are 15-34 (76.4%), which will mean features must be added to appeal to this demographic. This may include brighter colours for the backgrounds and fonts, while keeping it relatively neutral at points also, this is due to the media producer wanting to appeal to both points of the age spectrum. This is achieved by the popular car magazine using the right colours, layouts, feature articles and fonts for the correct demographic, this has made it one of the biggest niche market magazines in the UK. Gender readership is the last thing that can be measured accurately for magazine sales. Like Q magazine, males out buy females. This is due to, first, the genre of the magazine and second, the writers of the articles are from a male point of view, Top Gear have no female writers. The cars on the cover and in articles, the neutral colours and the layout of text and information to consume on the cover are a few techniques Top Gear use to try and entice a more male orientated audience. Readership 1,724,000 Socio economic status ABC1 – 55.3% C2DE – 44.7% Gender readership Male – 83.4% Female – 16.6% Age 15-34 – 76.4% 35+ - 23.6%
  4. 4. Images Q Magazine The images in Q are both striking and dominant to the front cover. They have, and want, this effect because the audiences eyes are drawn to the image on the page because it’s the only image on there. The media producer will have decided to construct the front cover to have one picture because then everyone knows what the main cover story will be about before reading any text. The way in which Noel is captured on the cover also links to the anchorage on the page. The caption states Noel is “still pulling punches”, which is then captured in the image on this particular cover. In terms of the images within the magazine itself: they connect to the stories which they are about, which they should. Q magazine always seem to generate exclusive pictures that capture music stars in a different light, compared to the way in which they are normally portrayed. These images give the audience a different view of music stars and change their outlook, which is a strong feature that media products are trying to communicate to the audience. These images, linked with the content, is the reason why Q magazine is one of the biggest niche market magazines in the UK.
  5. 5. Images Top Gear Similar to Q magazine, Top Gear also only have one dominant image on the front cover. This is to draw the attention of the audience, while informing them about the main piece within the magazine, without reading the anchorage around the cover of the magazine. However, Top Gear have a few other images on the cover, which explain other stories within the magazine. This maybe seen as a way of taking attention off the main piece, but with 1.7 million readers, it is also one of the most popular niche market magazines. Like most magazines, not just Q magazine, Top Gear have used images to link with the particular story on the page. This particular story features many images because it is comparing a few cars in extensive detail. These additional pictures give the article a visual, which aids the reader to understand the full extent to these cars been written about.
  6. 6. Words Q Magazine As stated in the target audience slide, the socio-economic audience for this magazine is ABC1, which requires a much higher level of lexis than the average magazine. From the articles, you can see this is clear from the copy that is written throughout the articles. Formal language is used throughout, which carries out the function Q magazine set itself in the credentials (Q magazine target audience slide). The music terminology is also carried out, but at the same time, still understandable to the audience. An example of this would be in the article with Muse (right) when it’s explaining features of the new album, it goes through it extensively, but still maintains a simple wording of the process. The front cover has a lot of text to take in about the articles within the product. The words that are used on the cover are normally the main quotes from inside the articles, which you’ll have to buy to find out more, this is how the producer hooks you. In this case, the quote about Noel suggests a few anecdotes from Liam’s past, which will entice the audience to purchase Q. Another technique that could be used, and used on this cover, are play on words. These are cleverly thought about and constructed when planning the issues. This cover, as it happens, does have an example of one of these. “Liam’s Beady Eye kicks off” is playing on the name of Gallagher’s new band, while linking with the image of a reflection in his glasses, which cover his beady eyes.
  7. 7. Words Top Gear On the front of the magazine, Top Gear have stuck to the idea of appealing to a male dominated demographic. This is evident from this particular cover that conveys the words “more powerrr!” . This particular lexis choice will appeal to a mostly male audience. On the other hand, this example of gender specific wording goes against Top Gears targeting of the ABC1 socio-economic demographic, due to the “more powerrr!” been classified as informal. As for inside the magazine, a technique that is used quite often from Top Gear is play on words. Like most magazines, including Q on the last slide, play on words are a good way of drawing in and keeping the audience. This example of ‘Arcade Fire’ which consumers will assume is the band, however, is in fact a car next to an arcade. This heading has more significance though, Top Gear have used a cross-genre technique that involves one magazine, in this case, a motoring magazine, using a name or bit of terminology from another genre of magazine, this case music.
  8. 8. Colours Q Magazine The colours used in Q magazine tend to be quite restrained and traditionally aren’t made up of bright colours. This though was Q’s target because they are trying to appeal to 29 year olds, which will not be appealed to with bright and loud colours. The Kasabian cover on the right is made up of colours which denote dull and boring. However, the bi-line is ‘life inside rock’s new royalty’ which connotes reserved colours and not bright colours, which haven’t been used. The other cover uses very different techniques in terms of colours. The dark nature of the band that are on the front, Nirvana, has been transferred onto lead singer Kurt Cobain, who is wearing very dark colours himself. As for the colour of the titles, The important and key parts are highlighted in red. This helps the audience identify key talking points of the magazine without reading the whole of the front cover. Colours in the articles are restrained and neutral colours, which reflects the targeting of a 29 year old male audience. Bright colours won’t appeal to the older side of the audience of the product, however, fonts and boxes are filled with colour in certain sections, which will appeal to the young age demographic that consume this music magazine. Even the colours of the images, especially on the left example, are dull, restrained.
  9. 9. Colours Top Gear The colours used on the front of Top Gear magazine are very different to the ones on the front of Q. Bright and bold colours are used on both the backing of the text, the fonts and the images that are used. This is expected when you take into account the outcome of the target audience statistics: Top Gear is read by a 15-34 year age demographic. These loud colours appeal to the younger part of the demographic, while the rest of the demographic, mostly male, are enticed by the cars on the front. While the colours on the far right cover are more restrained, they are still brighter than the more neutral Q magazine. Where as in Q magazine, the layout or colours don’t change from week to week, (bright colour free images and red highlighted fonts to inform you of the cover star), Top Gear alters the colours on the cover. This links to Psychographics in task one, a young demographic, like a few that read Top Gear, tend to be explorers and aspirers, which traditionally like to see new things and care about aesthetic features, rather than the actual product. Top Gear fulfils these gratifications for the audience, while making sure the colours aren’t too bright for those who are in the older part of the demographic bracket. Now the magazine has got your attention from the covers design features, the bright and loud colours stop to some extent. This is mainly to appeal to the majority of the target demographics, but it also wants to maintain a professional look to the magazine, which bright colours will not generate. While some articles have the odd bright box or title, Top Gear turns into a product similar to Q magazine, the black and white photo style (left) becomes more evident, the black font and the increase in text is more evident than before. Top Gear turns into a high end, professional supplement, which still appeals to all it’s demographics with the car genre and trivial copy writing from Clarkson and co.
  10. 10. Fonts Q Magazine The traditional font for Q magazine, impact, (text such as the ‘Arcade Fire’ and ‘Muse’) is the norm for most Q magazine issues and the font used in the majority of the magazine. However, many titles on cover are in a special font. For example the far cover on the right uses the font to write “The Stone Roses” in the font the Mancunian band used on their debut album. This was used to appeal to the fans of the band, while still appealing to the loyal Q fans by using a quite regular font still. As for the other cover, the font that’s used depicts a font that would be commonly seen in comic books. This may appeal to a younger demographic who still read comic books or quite recently consumed them, while making other readers wonder why this font is different to the traditional Q font. This then begs the question of what he has said, which, in turn, makes it even more intriguing to the reader, who Q have potentially hooked to buy the product through this technique. The big and bold font will also appeal to the intended audience, a male one, while the colours, which were covered in the colour section, also do this. Like most magazines, Q magazine aren’t any different in their use of Arial font for the inside of their magazine. This font is simple to use, clear and still maintains a professional look. While the font would appeal to most audiences, Arial would appeal to a more male readership, due to the simple nature of it, where as a female demographic would be appealed to more by a fancy font, like Vogue magazine uses. Arial is not an age specific font, but the colours of it, which were discussed on the last few pages, is the feature which dictates this. As for the titles in the articles, they have the same impact font as the front cover. However, these titles tend to be quotes, so must be noticed by the audience, this is why in the image on the left, some of the text is bigger than others, while a key word is highlighted. This word, associated with the singer, will be the word Q want to communicate to the consumer, hence the highlighting. The font used in Vogue, which will appeal to a more female orientated audience.
  11. 11. Fonts Top Gear Unlike Q magazine, Top Gear doesn’t change fonts on their magazines. The logo and the titles of the cover stay the same from issue to issue, while only changing the colour of them. Another difference between the two print products is the font used on the covers. Where as Q uses Impact, Top Gear go for more of a bold option, with Berlin Sans FB Demi with black piping. The boldness and simplicity however, have the same effect as Q magazine, they appeal to the correct demographics, gender and age wise. On the other hand, the font used is a modern font, which won’t appeal to the older section of the age bracket drawn up by the NRS. Yet, the font can’t please everyone in the demographic so Q magazine have managed to carry out their font choices successfully. The inside of the magazine uses Arial, like most magazines. Like explained in the Q font section, Arial is simple to read, while it’s gender neutral. You would think this gender neutral font would be bad for both Q and Top Gear, due to them been gender specific product, but the revenue generated from female sales still contributes to a huge profit, which they couldn’t afford to lose. This is why magazines like these can’t put all features in a product that appeal to just one gender, instead, features that will appeal to the other section of the demographic must be added. The titles in the magazine have the same problem as the front cover, especially on this article (left), they’re too modern for the 34 year old, who is the top end of the age demographic for this magazine.
  12. 12. Layout Q Magazine Q magazines layout is simply constructed, while maintaining the look of sufficient information and professionalism that’s required for this type of magazine. The layout changes from week to week, depending on the cover star, sometimes it’s a quote from the musician or a fact, this dictates the layout, as well as the size of the figures image. In most cases, the cover star fills the whole page, but in these two examples, another picture features on the cover, which doesn’t usually occur on Q magazine. The text that accompanies the image traditionally is in a different colour to the other pieces of writing on the cover, this is usually so you can easily differentiate the two. The only thing that doesn’t change from issue to issue is the logo and the top line about the UK’s biggest music magazine. Even if these elements are distorted, like on the muse cover (left, they still maintain a constant position on the front. This simplicity of the layout, in tandem with the lack of text, leans toward a male targeted audience, who are young. This is the audience that the magazine attract on a month to month basis, which prompts the media producers to not alter the layout. Inside the magazine, much of the same can be seen, an ordered, clear layout. The articles aren’t cluttered with various images stroon about, the text stays in ordered paragraphs, instead of the sections been sorted around the page in a muddled order. On this particular page from Q there is only one image to go with the copy, this helps the layout stay simple and clear. Even in the other example, where there’s a collection of pictures, it is still easy to follow, while obtaining a modern style, which Q wanted to go for, due to the article been entitled ‘The Teenagers’. With articles such as these, Q have made sure they try and find an article for everyone, so at least something will appeal to every kind of person from the various demographics. The majority of articles look like my two examples so will appeal to a young to mid age demographic, which Q are targeting. Apart from the review section been cluttered in it’s layout, Q maintains a clear professional look that will appeal to it’s majority of ABC1 targeted readership.
  13. 13. Top Gear Layout The layout of this magazine is very different to Q magazine, in terms of the amount of text on the front cover. Q magazine doesn’t have much to look at, where as Top Gear wants to try and tell you as much as you can about the articles within the product. Both techniques are good to use for very different reasons. Top Gear is telling you everything about the articles and will get the audience enticed to buy the issue of the magazine. However, some of the enigma codes are lost after this, there are now no mystery articles within and the audience may not buy it because of this. Where as Q magazine has that element of mystery shadowing the issues of their magazine. They don’t give the articles away, but the audience may not be comfortable buying a magazine without finding out a little bit more about the content. The packed layout will appeal to many people in the 15-34 age demographic but may lose a few with the amount of text, especially young readers, due to the young readers been unwilling to read large bits of text. A chunk of the male demographic maybe lost by this feature too, but like many features, you can’t please every single member of a certain target audience. These two articles to the left are the variations of stories you can find in Top Gear magazine, which are on the opposite sides of the scale. The left article has coloured boxes, a lot of images to break the text up and a little bit of text to tell you the main points. This article is aimed at the younger male audience that it is meant o be aimed at, even though the older section of the bracket won’t be appealed to. Just like Q magazine, there are articles for everyone, such as the ‘cars for women’ section in this particular issue, which will generate the 16.6% of female readership that currently purchase Top Gear. The other article is the complete opposite, plenty of text, a few images and a lack of colours. This will not appeal to a younger reader, but will to the top end of the 15-34 age demographic. Unlike many magazines however, Top Gear doesn’t include any ‘filler’ writing, which is traditionally used to fill a gap in the articles. This is usually in an informal supplement, which Top Gear is not, due to the ABC1 socioeconomic majority that is consuming this motoring magazine.
  14. 14. Captions Q Magazine Captions on the front of Q, and any magazine for that matter, usually have a title that includes a quote, play on words or a description. For this particular product though, the media producer of Q likes to have a quote or description from inside the magazine. The right image uses a quote from Foo fighters front man Dave Grohl to try and advertise the magazine. Magazines have to think about how much of the quote they want to give away. In this case, not much has been communicated to the audience, which raises more questions than it answers: it leaves the audience with the question of why will it kill him? what exactly will kill him? And how will it do that?. Q will then hope these enigma codes will be enough to sell copies of this particular issue. On the other hand, a magazine usually needs another feature to help generate sales, which is why the music magazine is giving away a free CD with this issue. While the text about the pictured person isn’t technically a caption, it helps to advertise and explain the image so is still counted as some sort of text based explanation. In terms of various demographics, the 29 year old average will be attracted by the enigma, while the male audience will be enticed with the use of a fiery image as well as the colours used, if not the band itself, who has a majority of male fans. The only target demographic this example may not appeal to is the ABC1 socio-economic, who maybe put off by the rock genre that is featured in this particular issue. As both captions appear, Q magazine like to associate puns with their imagery throughout the magazine, which is unlike the ‘captions’ on the front cover. The Jay-Z caption is a cleverly constructed pun that is linked directly to the image that Q have taken. The same can be said for the Amy Winehouse image, except this caption has been based on another media product, which is an example of a cross-media reference, which Q execute very well. At first, I’m sure Q experimented with puns and got feedback from it’s readers before making most captions a humorous nature. As the readership figures show, males of a 29/30 age demographic are mostly the targets of these humour filled captions, while an ABC1 socio-economic demographic will also be subject to Q’s caption targeting. This is due to the C2DE demographic been more likely appealed to by controversial and cheap humour, usually found in media products such as The Sun
  15. 15. Top Gear Captions Top Gear use very different techniques for their captions on the front cover, compared to Q. The motoring magazine like to use word play and rhetorical questions as their ‘captions’. Normally Top Gear uses one of these features to try and caption their images on the front cover, however, on this example, they’ve used both. “One Beauty…Two Beasts” suggests a lot of power, while also personifying the cars, which will suggest the idea of these cars been more relatable to the audience. The rhetorical question of “1007KW SSC: Fastest car in the world?” allows the consumer to think about it, but not answer it, while letting the audience know the answer will be inside, which is an example of an enigma, which, as established earlier, is used more by Q. However, the younger section of the 15-34 age demographic will not mind too much about captions. This is coming back to the idea of Psychographics, which states young people mainly tend to be aspirers, which means they care more about an attractive product, rather than the content. These types won’t read the captions or, in most cases, a bit of the articles too, instead looking at the pictures and small text boxes. Explanation is a recurring feature of the captions inside Top Gear. Instead of using play on words, rhetorical questions or humour, the media producers have seen the captions as an opportunity to add more depth to the articles. As well as the explanation, an opinion has also been added, which is a controversial statement that the audience could highly debate. You may think this is a bad thing for an audience to disagree with a statement the magazine has made, but if people are discussing the product, more people will know about the media product, therefore, more sales for the media company. Again, the same applies to captions in the articles, a younger age group will not be too concerned about reading the captions accompanying the images. It is however an appealing feature to a male audience because, instead of a big chunk of text, it’s broken up into little sections, which will appeal to the majority of male readers, which Top Gear rightly targets.
  16. 16. Anchorage Q Magazine In lots of articles, many things can be interpreted as Anchorage. In this particular piece, I interpret the ‘Anatomy of a song’ title as the main piece of anchorage on the page. I decided this because it gives the text its meaning and informs the audience of the topic they are about to read. If this key piece of anchorage wasn’t included in the article, I think the story would lose it’s meaning and wouldn’t be as effective as it currently is now. This anchorage isn’t beneficial to one demographic over another, therefore can’t be analysed. In this example the main piece of anchorage is the quote from pop star Lily Allen. This is the main form of anchorage on the page because without the addition of this feature it would be a bare looking article with no controversial talking points, but instead, a section of the copy is taken and put at the top to express the talking point of this article. From there the audience can then decide whether to read the article or not, this will of course depend on your opinion of the individual. Due to the controversial nature of the quote, this piece of anchorage can not be associated with a certain demographic or group. Another piece of anchorage on the page is the highlighted name of Lily Allen. This, in my opinion, is seen as anchorage because without this element, the whole article would be meaningless, due to people who didn’t recognise the star not having any textual aid.
  17. 17. Anchorage Top Gear Like captions, Top Gear use Anchorage very differently to Q magazine. Top Gear tend to use anchorage to convey a rhetorical message or bold title, rather than a quote, which can usually be found in Q. In this particular example on the right, the piece of anchorage on the page would be the ‘legal evil’ title. This is because it’s the striking text feature on the page, but unlike Q, if you took this piece of anchorage out, it would still have the same effect and have the same meaning. Rhetorical questions are the main form of Anchorage in Top Gear, as you can see from the BMW example on the left. While this article would still make sense without this particular anchorage, it wouldn’t be as effective without it. This is due to the addition of this title making the audience think about the statement, which gives the article a controversial side to it.
  18. 18. Codes and conventions – Colour scheme Q Magazine The red black and white colour scheme of Q magazine is the usual colour scheme from issue to issue. This, coupled with the one large image on the front, allows Q to build a familiarity with the audience through the same colour scheme month to month. Consumers will not even have to look round for this media product, they just have to look for the colours of the magazine, it’s that familiar to the audience. This colour scheme will appeal to a male orientated, ABC1 demographic, who are young to mid 20’s. Even though these colours will put off female readers, due to the lack of bright colours, Q doesn’t want to stand out, just create a personal relationship with the consumers through familiarity. The age demographic of 29 that Q are intending to target will be enticed by these relatively neutral colours, where as the young readers may not be appealed to by the colour scheme. This is due to brighter colours been the main technique that a young consumer may look for, due to them been categorised in the aspirer psychographic category. Inside the magazine, more neutral colour schemes can be found. However, unlike the front cover, these neutral colours are used to enable the images and bold text boxes to stand out more. Like many magazines, the colour scheme varies throughout the magazine, which will allow the overall product to appeal to many demographics, not just the target ones (it helps create a bigger profit). Colour schemes in magazines appeal to more demographics than the cover does, so can’t be pinpointed to a certain demographic or group. Young readers are appealed to by the brighter/ colourful articles, where as an older demographic will be looking for neutral/restrained colours.
  19. 19. Codes and conventions – Colour scheme Top Gear Top Gear’s colour scheme is traditionally bright and colourful, which successfully entices it’s young demographic. However, unlike Q magazine, Top Gear change colour schemes from issue to issue. Also, unlike Q magazine, the motoring magazine don’t rely on the familiarity of colour schemes to sell magazine, they instead rely on the bright heading, which has the same font each issue. As it’s already been established, the bright colours will be more appealing to young readers, while also maybe appealing to female readership also, which contribute to more than 100,000 of top Gear’s viewership. Another factor that’s been established which applies here is that all demographics must be taken into account when designing a magazine, even the ones that aren’t been targeted. The colour schemes vary throughout the articles due to Top Gears willingness to try and appeal to a wide range of groups. This feature must work for the company because of the 1.7 million readership. Articles like this (left) use a bright coloured picture with toned doesn't text to contrast it, this allows the article to be aesthetically pleasing to most demographics that could potentially read top gear magazine. Other articles in this motoring magazine include neutral colour schemes, which appeal to the older bracket of age demographics (30-34). As well as colourful, bright and loud colour schemed articles, which appeal to the young bracket of the demographic (15-20). Top Gear are one of a handful of magazines that successfully appeal to a vary of groups, which put them in a unique ‘mainstream-niche’ category.
  20. 20. Codes and conventions – Photography Q Magazine Photography in Q magazine is made up of two types; Studio photography and live photography. The live photography, as it suggests, are pictures of a live event, in this case, a music event. Studio photographs are pictures that have been staged and posed by a particular musician. Studio images make up the majority of magazines photography, due to the ability to re-take the pictures, which you can’t do with live photography. The image on the right is an example of studio photography from Q magazine. These particular kinds of images may appeal more to an older demographic, due to them less likely to still going to live music events as often as they used to, thus, the studio images been more appealing to them. However, no age or socio-economic group can be targeted by these images because they don’t appeal to one over the other. Only two or three live photography images can be found in each issue of Q. This is down to the difficulty of generating these kind of photos because you can’t recreate a shot the same as you can with studio photography. Live images will appeal to a younger type of audience, who can relate to these gig or live music experiences they have been to. All the images are of quality, which attracts the target audience, while the colours of most of the magazines match the colour scheme of restrained colours. This would allow the photography to appeal to the demographic it should.
  21. 21. Codes and conventions – Photography Top Gear Top Gear magazine traditionally use 3 types of photography in their magazine. The three types are: still, action and collage. The still image’s main purpose is to portray the main features of the car. These images are traditionally taken on a neutral background, which will show how striking the automobile is. The still image has a lot of similarities to the studio photography in Q. For example, the neutral background where both are usually generated allows the car to be almost personified. The action shot, a Top Gear favourite, has the purpose to show the consumer how exciting it is to drive this car. This is normally communicated by the car been captured on a challenging or picturesque road, which will show the car can be fun to drive, fun that you could be having. The action shot is the Top Gear equivalent to Q magazines live shot, the only difference is, no group or demographic is particularly targeted by this piece of photography. The Collage shot is the last of the three shots in the Top Gear photography types. This kind captures different angles of the car, which are then presented as a collective. Reviews are the section that these images are usually used on. This is because the media producer wants to portray the car from as many angles as possible, whether this is the interior or exterior. Like the other Top ear photography types, no demographic is targeted in particular.
  22. 22. Codes and conventions – Writing style and language Q Magazine From the cover you can’t tell this magazine is targeting the majority of ABC1 socioeconomic readers. This is due to the language and writing style been very simple, which communicates a C2DE nature to the front cover. However, due to there not been much text on the cover, you can’t make the assumption that it is aimed toward a specific socio-economic, or any other demographic. When you read the opening couple of pages however, the informal lexis and simple vocabulary found on the cover disappears completely. From these couple of articles you can evidently see why the product is aimed at an ABC1 socioeconomic group. The lexis is complex, with such words as “connoisseur” (left), with some specialist lexis distributed throughout all the articles, which you expect from a niche market , specific interest magazine.
  23. 23. Codes and conventions – Writing style and language Top Gear More people of a C2DE demographic read Top Gear than Q magazine, which would lead to the assumption that more informal and simple vocabulary would be used. However, the front cover doesn’t distribute these techniques, instead, giving a more ABC1 demographic fee to it. These is carried out by a specialist lexis of cars been displayed throughout the front cover. Even though the other vocabulary isn’t complex on the cover, compared to Q it’s the same, which would indicate a similar socio-ecomic targeting, but as you can see from the statistics slide, they differ. Unlike Q magazine, the language inside doesn’t differ from the front cover. Specialist lexis can be seen throughout the articles, like the front cover, but complex vocabulary isn’t seen as much. Words such as “sliding”, “drifting”, “Subaru” and “BRZ” are all examples of the specialist terms generated by articles in the product (left). It is now evident why this magazine is more C2DE equal than Q magazine, with the absence of complex lexis, which Q magazine uses throughout. In terms of other demographics, an age demographic wouldn’t apply to this particular feature. Due to the car terms used in the magazine, a more male orientated audience maybe appealed to more, in terms of age groups.
  24. 24. Codes and conventions – Text and picture ratio Q Magazine Text and picture ratio on the magazine varies from issue to issue, depending on how much the media producer wants to give away. The killers issue has a lot of text compared to the single picture that is on the cover. This suggests that the media producer felt the need to communicate the articles that are included within that particular issue. This makes the magazine appealing to all consumers who are not major fans of the main cover star. Already got sub money However, the prodigy issue is different, it doesn’t have much more text than the single picture. This is down to this particular issue been a subscriber exclusive. This means that the media producer will not mind about the profit generated by this particular issue because Q have already generated the money for sales, due to the buyers been subscribers. This suggests the content won’t be up to the standard of the regular Q magazine. In terms of text and picture ratio inside Q magazine, they vary from article to article. Some stories have the majority of pictures with mere explanations, compared to some that have large chunks of text and a single picture. This, similar to a lot of features Q carries out, is because of the wide range of demographics they are trying to target. This particular example (left) shows the majority of pictures example. Both types of articles can’t be linked to any demographic, age or other. Mainly because even though people of different demographics do differ in many ways, if you are interested in a certain subject, you are going to read about it. Therefore, the majority of Q consumers will digest the articles, due to their interest, not because of their age, socio-economic status or gender.
  25. 25. Codes and conventions – Text and picture ratio Top Gear Top Gear and Q magazine are similar in terms of text and picture ratio. The text on these particular issues (right) definitely outnumber the images, but this can be expected on most magazine covers. This feature helps communicate the content of the magazine to the consumer. The only reason the images will ever outweigh the text is when the media producer intends to create an enigma about the magazine. This technique however is a very risky one, which is why not many producers implement it. Also like Q magazine, this text and picture ratio can’t be related to a specific demographic, due to the niche market interests of the consumer who bought the product, wanting to read the products because of their interest, not because it’s mainstream. Much of the same is found inside the magazine, the text outweighs the pictures. This example on the left however is an example of where images are distributed to outweigh text. This technique is usually used to break the text up and make the articles look more manageable and appealing to it’s consumer. Also, on an article like this, pictures are sometime easier to communicate a point to the audience. The visual aids in the article work especially well, due to the futuristic looking car been hard to explain in words because the car is yet to be built.
  26. 26. Codes and conventions – Fonts Q Magazine As it can be deduced from the previous slides, Q uses a quite bold font to try and entice one of it’s main demographics, males. Even though these fonts are sometimes changed from issue to issue, due to the cover star, the font is still designed for a male audience. This is done by features like flicks and curls on letters getting avoided by media producers because they are viewed as female orientated font feature. These examples of magazines on the right that have had their font changed are still orientated to a male audience because of the bold nature. However, age demographics may be involved because the fonts that are used on these products are traditionally used by the band as their font. This is a factor because the bands fonts may not be recognised by certain age demographics, so therefore won’t appeal to a certain age bracket. The inside of the magazine features much of the same. Dependant on the musician covered, a different font is used. One thing that doesn’t change though is the sign that the magazine is a male targeted audience. This is due to the majority of male musicians featured in Q, which in turn, generates the fonts that entice a male consumer. The only other time the font changes is when a title or an interview question is featured in the magazine. This then prompts the text to become bolder or larger, which, if anything, increases the appeal to a male reader. One thing in terms of demographics not communicated through fonts is socioeconomics, due to a font not having any links to socio-economic class whatsoever.
  27. 27. Codes and conventions – Fonts Top Gear Similarities can be seen between the font used on both Top Gear magazine and Q magazine. For example the boldness of the font, which prompts another similarity, a male dominated target audience. This bold font, used on all Top Gear issues, doesn’t have any female features on. It’s kept simple, bold and still remains effective, so it can please the target audience, which is the male audience. Even on the awards issue, where the font has been glamorised to make it more relevant to the nature of the issue, still manages to be a male orientated font. The only difference between the cover fonts on the two magazines are the colours. Q have a restrained take on font colours, where as this motoring magazine will tend to use quite vibrant and bright colours on the titles and logo. This particular technique will appeal to a female audience, which Top Gear will still want to target, due to this group still generating a lot of profits for the company. Fonts on the inside of the magazine emulate those used on the cover. The impact font which is used for the cover, is used for the titles of the articles, while the copy is written in a smaller version of a similar font to impact. This feature is also where Top Gear and Q are similar in terms of font. On the other hand, unlike Q, age demographics can’t be tied to the Top Gear fonts, while the similarity of socio-economic status is shared.
  28. 28. Codes and conventions – Modes of address Q Magazine Q don’t use direct address to form a personal relationship with the audience, but instead focus on colloquial techniques such as rhetorical questions as their mode of address. On the front cover, occasionally, Q magazine will pose a question to the consumer. The most common explanation for this is the sales of the product will hopefully increase due to the reader wanting to know the answer to this question. The reason direct address isn’t used on this particular product is because a niche market magazines job isn’t to try and create a personal relationship with a consumer, but instead, report information abut a specific interest or topic, unlike mainstream print products. A lot can be said for the inside of the magazine, that hardly ever, if ever, uses direct address. Rhetorical questions are used a lot from this product, which gives the suggestion Q want to make the audience think about a particular article or topic, which will lead to them buying feature issues with similar or the same topics.
  29. 29. Codes and conventions – Modes of address Top Gear Similar techniques are found on the front of Top Gear which are also on the front of Q. The rhetorical questions are used on a few issues to generate consumer opinions and thoughts about the cars featured in the issues of Top Gear, like the example on the right. This, like Q magazine, will sell issues for this particular product. Unlike Q however, this feature is used very rarely, instead techniques like “best in the word” are added. These statements enable the audience to form opinions, while subconsciously thinking about the answer, without Top Gear even generating the rhetorical questions. A different approach to the mode of address is taken by Top Gear inside though. They go against niche market codes and conventions by using direct address. The use of “you” allows the audience to feel like the writer and the media producer is talking to them, forming a personal relationship with the company, which will therefore influence the consumer to purchaser future issues. On the other hand, Top Gear use this technique very rarely to entice the audience. Various demographics can’t be specifically targeted, due to direct address not been linked to one particular group.
  30. 30. Audience feedback Your product must be tried and tested before you put it in production, due to there been no guarantee a consumer will enjoy your product, regardless of the effort put in to generate this particular print product. Also, the quantity of the consumers that do enjoy the Magazine/newspaper will not necessarily make it a huge hit or successful. This is why it’s required to collect audience feedback on your products. There are a number ways of measuring this feedback: • Focus Groups • Audience panel • Trialling • Complaints Focus Groups This involves a group of people that talk about a product, aspect of production, new logos or re-designing of a website. The feedback is then recorded and the data will be refereed to when the design process is in progress. This feedback way could be a good way to find out honestly about someone's feedback on your product, but it can be difficult o get the quantity of people that you require for a thorough feedback process. Audience panel A group of people who are contacted o a regular basis about a specific product or service a company provide. It enables companies to receive feedback from the same, often a high in quantity group of people. This process maybe be over a number of months or years, this allow the individuals to get a great understanding for what the company is looking for in terms of feedback, as well as the company seeing what the individual is capable of in terms of feedback.
  31. 31. Audience feedback Trialling Products which are new are usually released in a trial version first. This enables consumer response to be received, while changes can be made before it’s completely released to the public. This can be highly costly to the company to make a trial version before the actual version, however, in the long run, companies could benefit from the trialling process if any faults are found at this process. Complaints Direct comments from the audience, in terms of a complaint, are an effective way of viewing the reaction to changes. A number of ways can be used to submit complaints to print producers, such as social media. Complaints are viewed as a negative thing for a company, but the product may have a flaw that needs adjusting, this will benefit the company if they can make the right adjustments from consumer analysis and complaints.