Theoretical research

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This is my presentation for my theoretical research section of my media project

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Theoretical Research Audience Theory Cerys Mee

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What is Audience Theory? Audience Theory is "an element of thinking that developed within academic literary theory and cultural studies. With a specific focus on rhetoric, some, such as Walter Ong, have suggested that the audience is a construct made up by the rhetoric and the rhetorical situation the text is addressing." (from Wikipedia). Target Audience and these audience theories are really important for my regional magazine because this information will all depend on what I include in my magazine and my website and my billboard, and the language I use and the images I use and the angles etc. This means that before I start anything, doing my audience theory and my other theories I will include is really important for my project.

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Audience Type I feel that my magazine will be more aimed towards a niche audience (a smaller audience) because of the specific style I am using in my magazine. Although it would be better to attract a mass audience, I feel that talking about and having one magazine dedicated to the kind of style that is seen less is just as important as attracting huge audiences. I think the minority is important as well as the majority. I also think that my audience that I will choose is more of a psychographic approach rather than demographic. Demographic is looking more at age and gender and class and their occupation, whereas, psychographics are more like their hobbies and their interests. I think I am choosing this approach because it gives me more of a chance to explore the kinds of people in this style’s target audience.

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Web 2.0 Web 2.0 is the internet and social media. However, this little theory is not talking about the program itself, it is talking more about people’s approaches to it and their attitudes when using it which I think is really important to think about. Teens are seen more to be glued to their screens more than people think adults are. Some adults who look at this stereotype may think that the internet and web 2.0 is changing people’s ways of thinking and their attitudes towards the current affairs. As part of this brief I have chosen, I have to do a website. This is using web 2.0 to gain people’s attention. This may also mean I should include some kind of social media platform in order to gain readers and gain a bigger audience, or even state that they could download the issue of the magazine on their digital device, as most magazines are doing so in order to extend their audiences and to have a wider range of audiences.

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Uses and Gratifications This theory states that each product has the soul goal of satisfying certaineeds of the audiences. These needs are: P – Personal Identity: The need to develop personal identity through things like role models , aspirational lifestyles, aspects of behaviour in common life experiences, tastes in cultural life . I – Inform: The need for information, which may include things like news gathering but can extend again to information about people in the world, lifestyles and life choices . E – Entertainment and escapism: What you are consuming should give you enjoyment and also some form of 'escapism' enabling us to forget ur worries temporarily. S – Social Interaction: The need for social interaction by sharing in the consumption and engagement of texts with others.

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Uses and Gratifications Personal Identity I think that there are many ways in which I can acheive all of these different needs of the audience. However, for my project, not all of them maya be acheivable considereing my magazine subject anhe topic of it. Personal Identity - I think that this is acheivable depending who my main model is and the age and gender. This will also depend of my target audience. If my target audience is young teenage girls from the age of 15-19, then the model will most likely have to around that age and have a good personality to be a role model to the reader. If my target audience was boys in this same age groupthen, it will have to be around this age and once again be the right age group with a good role model material of a personality. It could also depend on what the reader's job or career status is or their hobbies. If they are working in a good paying place then maybe the model should have the similar kind of job or even have clothing that would be more applicable and inspring to this group of people. If the reader is still in education, maybe doing A levels or end of GCSE's then the model or the magazine in general will have to be about or keep school in mind and maybe give the correct tips and school hacks to help the reader through that particular time in their lives.

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Uses and Gratifications Inform This need for information is easily fulfilable in all of my products, my magazine and the ancillaries. Especially in the website. In the website, like most magazine websites there is always a section where the viewer can find the differnet news articles to stay within the current events and so they can find out more on that website. It is a really good way of getting people to read more of these articles and get more information. This means I could include things about the recent news on America and North Korea and the Hurricane news. It is all important in present day. Also just on my billboard, that is an opportunity for the magazine to give the reader more information on the magazines issues and the dates of key events like new releases.

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Uses and Gratifications Entertainment and Escapism The one easy way to acheive this need in the Uses and Gratifications theory is simply to keep the magazine interesting and entertaining and enjoyable all the way through. This allows the reader to feel enjoyment when reading all the articles adn all the pages. It also needs to allow the reader to feel involved with the magazine so much that they forget all the bad things happening in their lives and just focus on the magazines. It needs to allow the reader to dive into the article they are reading. Like the Personal Identity, This may depend on the target audience, allowing me to decide what in the magazine will invlove the reader the most. If they are in school, then maybe something that will relate so much to the reader that they will want to kep reading and will zone out to everything else around them for the time they are reading this article.

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Uses and Gratifications Social Interactions This is a nice one that is sometimes difficult to include in something like a magazine, maybe easier in a website, but for a reader to have the social interaction aspect achieved, then it needs to really be included all the way through all my ancillaries. To acheive this to the full capacity, I think that I will include the symbols of as many social media platforms as possible. This is seen very often on magazine pages and on billboards. It is a way of encouraging the reader or their audience to search and find their favourite magazine on any social media platform. It is a little easier on the website because there is the opportunity to include hyperlinked icons. However for my magazine I will not be able to do this. The main problem with doing social interaction from the uses and gratifications theory n my magazine and my ancillaries is that it will all have a huge effect on the target audience, and vise versa. For example, if my target audience were in their teens and are in school, then including social media will be of huge use and attraction because people of this age will more likely, stereotypically, use social media as their main communication platform. However, if the target audience were maybe in thier late twenties and are in a relationship with a fairly good job, then something like email would eb more sufficient, however, doing e-mail may be a little less used even for men and women of these agess. Age has a huge impact too. If they are from 18-21, not quite teens, and moving into adulthood, then they may still use social media as their main form of communication, however if they are from 22-30, it is less likely. This is regarding their job or career status.

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Conclusion In conclusion, I feel like the audience theories I have stated relate more to my magazine and the ancillaries. I am happy with how I intend to include and acheive these theories into my work and I feel like they will help hugely. And although I didn't include every single theory about audience there is out there, of which there is a lot, I still feel like the ones I have spoken about are key to my particular project. Audience is a really key part of all the 6 sections of theories, especially for a magazine. It can change all your ideas about what you wanted to do in your magazine, and it isn't just the target audience, it's all the things that you should include to show your magazine's full potential.

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