Where Did My Audience Go?
With the fragmentation of today’s media landscape, organizations are tasked with finding a way to break through all the noise and create impactful marketing messages. It is reported the average consumer is exposed to some 10,000 marketing messages a day. From television and mobile streaming to print and online media, the barrage of organizations fighting for the attention of your audience is overwhelming.
Yet, the savvier nonprofits, faith-based and distance learning organizations find a way to fight through the clutter and rise to the top. These brands inevitably understand something that many do not grasp:
- A strong audience still exists.
- Your audience islooking for you.
- It’s your mission to find them.
Media of Old
When we lived in an analog media world, our media selection was limited to say the least. We focused our eyes on the content that was produced. In the traditional world, content didn’t have to be of superior quality to gain traction. A simple presence all but garnered an audience’s attention.
In today’s multiscreen world, content is abundant which means we have to work a little harder to gain our audience’s attention.
Even the most researched, flawlessly-designed content can fail to grab the attention that once received just a decade ago. Despite an organization’s ability to reach a worldwide audience through online sources, there are so few that find the ultimate success they are looking for.
Audience fragmentation has left brands chasing the hottest platforms and marketing trends, only to have those platforms be replaced by the next wave of latest and greatest outlets.
What Is Audience Fragmentation?
What once was a mass audience has evolved into small groups each devoting a portion of their time to the wide spectrum of media outlets. As more media outlets emerge, audiences are no longer divided by television and radio consumption as they were just a couple of decades ago.
Media platforms are so diverse that the division is now referred to as video and audio. This creates niche outlets and devices that fill each segment. For example, radio long dominated any form of audio audience, but with the birth of podcasts and music channels that can be streamed from a smartphone, the audience is fragmented into smaller groups.
Audiences now have the power to dictate what they’ll consume, for how long, and which methods allow them to bypass marketing and advertising altogether.
The world of cable television, for example, is now fighting against Over the Top (OTT) media like Apple TV, Hulu, Roku, and Netflix.
Your audience consumes media on the outlet that works for their lifestyle and time.
So Now What?!
The good news!
Today, there are hundreds of video, audio, and digital options available catering to niche audiences. Although this can be a challenge in the beginning – there really is a huge opportunity for organizations to be able to locate their audience on a more direct, intimate level.
While it might seem like your audience has all but disappeared from one channel or platform, it doesn’t mean you can’t find them on another. And when you find them again – you’ll find many others who more than likely will want to learn more about your organization. We call this – Opportunity! Opportunity that was not available 15+ years ago!
If you found your audience on FM jazz radio ‘yesterday’, today, you’ll find them on Pandora and Spotify with a customized jazz artist list. You’ll have also found hundreds or thousands of others with similar interests.
Now that you know where your audience went – the next very important step is to truly identify who your audience is. As they spread into niche areas, who you thought your audience truly was and what they need might need to be revisited.
There is no doubt, defining your audience can be a challenge and requires you to really dig deep. But it’s worth the time you spend in brainstorming sessions with your team and outside partners. Once you know WHO your audience really is, the next question is, “How do I find where they spend their time?”
Stay tuned – and be sure to comment below. We’ll be posting a blog soon with more interactive tips to help you identify your niche audience that will naturally lead long term, high-value sustainers.