Quantitative Data is a way to specifically measure readership figures and
totals instead of specific opinions, and this is usually achieved by surveys and
polls instead of questionnaires and surveys which ask for more detailed
Audit Bureau of Circulations (ABC) – An industry body that offers estimates
for both print and film media. For a fee they will devise an estimate for the
total viewer count of a product or programme.
National Readership Survey (NRS) – A company that is more tailored for the
print media industry, and uses socio-economic breakdowns estimate a total
circulation and reader total for a print product.
Quantitative Data is useful for getting a rough estimate of figures for
viewership but is unsuitable for acquiring more complex and detailed
information about audiences
Qualitative Data is a much more detailed field of research and mainly
deals with the audience opinions and thoughts on a specific product.
Questionnaires are very useful for getting detailed opinions from
They are cheap to produce and distribute and do not require as much
effort as organizing an interview or other method. However, because
they are usually distributed in the mail or other forms of delivery
there is sometimes no way to regulate what answers are given,
therefore the interviewers may receive joke or bland answers that
will not contribute towards the research.
Qualitative Data – Cont.
Focus Groups: A group of people are chosen to review the product under free conditions, and
they are asked to provide their thoughts on the product.
Interviews: A one-on-one session where the interviewee will be asked a series of questions
about what they like and dislike about the product, which will then go into more detail.
Qualitative Data is overall extremely useful for gathering detailed information about the
feelings and opinions towards the product in question, with independent thought and
discussion encouraged with respondents.
On the other hand it offers no figures relating to the popularity of the product itself, which is
what quantitative research is suited for.
Using interviews or questionnaires, PB media can work out what their audience feels about
their publications or products. With either of these methods, they present questions that ask
for detailed opinions instead of check boxes that would solely be for a viewer count.
Audience profiles are a very apt way for media producers to
gather more detailed and accurate information about their
audience. They give information which is broken down into
categories that define who they are.
This is a good method to find out the products audience but
also makes it easier to decide what advertising brands to
feature on their product.
Although audience profiling is useful for asking the general
opinion of the biggest social groups, it does not cover all
The upper class is deemed as to small of a group to be
classified in general grouping.
This is an example of
audience profiling done for
the British music magazine,
Q. As you can see the profile
created here shows the
median age of readers and
their gender. It also shows
various other statistics
including the mass of their
audience in ABC1 and the
readership of it (the amount of
people who buy it).
Age is an important factor when classifying audiences as
people of similar ages usually tend to have similar likes
and dislikes, therefore buy the same product so the
producers have to make the said product more suitable
for their target audience.
For example, those in their twenties are more likely to live
at home or rent than people in their thirties.
This factors into SES by giving an estimate of income
and occupation because it is proven that younger people
up to their twenties and slightly above will still be living at
Socioeconomic Status is a term that defines the measure of a person’s economic (financial)
and social position, which is based on income, occupation and education.
This is based on research that has suggested that a higher education leads to a larger income
and a better/more stable occupation.
SES is used by several survey companies to estimate readership of magazines and newspapers
by breaking down the core demographics and sorting them via the three categories, which
allows them to work out the largest markets for that specific product.
For example, using SES to work out the market of the Daily Mail found that it’s most common
market was the middle class, which took around a 64% share of the Daily Mail’s entire
In general, SES is extremely useful for studying the core parts of the product’s viewership but
most of the data is vague and does not offer much in way of detail, making this a good basis of
Psychographics is a term that defines the study of the audience’s personality, lifestyle, beliefs
and attitudes. This information is grouped into 7 distinct categories that each describe a certain
This way of grouping can be extremely useful for studying the audience of a product as the
information collected and grouped allows for marketers to target them specifically by adhering to
their tastes, beliefs and and opinions.
For example, if PB Media were to create a auto magazine catered for young adult males (the
most common audience for similar products) it is likely that a bigger audience could be gathered
by including other things that this audience would enjoy, such as video games or football.
This method of study is a good way to specifically appeal to a certain audience because it
collects information that describes them as people – what they like, dislike, believe in, don’t
believe in – and a magazine will be able to adapt it’s content to specifically match these tastes.
Unfortunately this usually means that any other audiences will be alienated thanks to this content.
There are 7 mains psychographic categories.
The aspirer is materialistic and strives to be better in some way,
and could be described as a dreamer. Aspirers tend to be very
focused on their personal appearance and beauty, so naturally
they may be drawn to health/fashion magazines such as Vogue
Using personal characteristics to make generalizations
about a group of people and how they re defined
Men and women tend to have different interests so
finding out the genders of the majority of the audience
will help the producers decide what things to feature and
advertise in the said product.
Gender profiling is very vague, also occasionally males
or females prefer some things aimed at the opposite sex
and gender profiling doesn’t take that into consideration.
Mainstream or Niche?
Mainstream is the common current thought of the majority; this usually includes all
popular and media culture.
Products aiming at those mainstream are trying to attract a large audience, whereas
products aiming at niche are targeting a smaller audience whom have very particular
interests, but as it’s a smaller category, producers try to capture a majority of the
The producers of niche products, i.e. magazines are guaranteed a profit but a very
small one compared mainstream magazines. For example, Model Railroader, a
magazine solemnly aimed at those who are interested in model railway.
Although, magazine such as Heat and OK! are mainstream, they only focus on
targeting a select set of people, those who are interested in the lives of celebrities
whereas newspapers, like The Sun, do write about celebrities but also about real life
and real, important news stories.
Geodemographics is a study that involves data from the National Census.
A common belief is that people living in the same neighbourhood will often
share the same lifestyle, beliefs and attitudes.
Using this information marketers can aim to target specific areas that hold
similar traits. This means that a well-aimed product can bring in a wide
audience from this area.
Using geodemographics can also be helpful in accessing other data, such
as the wealth of people in the area, which can then factor into
Geodemographics is useful for acquiring information about a large area of
people and their general interests which can help with appealing to them,
but the information is not detailed, and there may be clashes in the kinds
of interests and beliefs in a certain group of people.