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Audience Analysis: Term Definition

Audience analysis is an activity that involves a critical analysis of the audience so as to be able to cater to their diversified needs, interests, and objectives in the speech to be delivered. When analyzing an audience, it is important that the type of audience is looked at. One such group is the experts who are normally well-educated people who have all the information concerning the product in question. They also know the theory being talked about inside-out since they have designed it and have tested it (Online Technical Writing, n.d). The other group is the technicians who build and operate the things that have been designed by the experts. The executives’ work on the other hand is to make decisions that the technicians and the experts work with. Finally, there are the nonspecialists who have the least technical knowledge and their main aim is to use the product to accomplish a given task.

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After knowing the group that the audience belongs to, it is important that the speaker looks at the amount of knowledge or experience that his or her audience possesses as well as taking into consideration, their needs or interests. This may include looking at what the audience is expecting or how the audience plans to use the information. It may also be important to consider the audience’s properties such as age, religion, or political views.

Once the audience has been analyzed, it will therefore be important that the writer adjusts to his or her audience. This is crucial as it will help the nonspecialists to understand better the technical components of the information being given. This may therefore involve either adding or reducing the amount of information already in the document (Online Technical Writing, n.d). It may also involve the use of examples so as to make the information more understandable to the audience. Or it may involve altering the level of the information so that it can suit the audience. It is also important to use special writing skills and graphics to make the information more clear and easy to understand.

The Characteristics of the Audience Considered During Analysis

When writing an audience analysis paper, there are important features of the audience that needs to be looked into. These include health conditions, medical status, race, gender, and age of the members of the audience (McGee, 1999). These physical factors are important since they will determine the audience’s response. By looking at the age of the audience one shall be able to analyze the level of maturity of his or her audience and definitely alter the level of complexity of the content to be talked about. Race and gender also determine a lot how the audience will relate to the speaker especially where people of different nationalities or cultures are involved. It is therefore important that the content of the writing does not conflict with the beliefs of the audience (McGee. 1999). Indeed, these physical factors are important since they will determine.

The audience analysis paper also requires considering the ethnicity as this will help in the prevention of any biased statements. Knowing the audience’s occupation helps in determining the amount of income the audience earns and this will eventually assist in determining whether the product is affordable to them or not. In addition, the level of education of the audience helps in determining their level of exposure and may reflect the level of understanding they have in relation to the information being delivered. The residence of the audience is important as it will help the speaker to know if they (audience) really have access to the product or not. Ultimately, the audience’s lifestyle or the understanding of the subject being talked about assists in assessing the acceptability of the product to them (McGee. 1999).

The psychological characteristics such as bias, self-image, level of motivation, mental health status, attitudes, sensitivity, and interest will have a serious impact on the audience’s response towards the company’s products (McGee. 1999). These physical factors, when considered, will help in determining whether the audience knows the product if they have an interest in the product or not and if they are using it or not. The information may also help in determining the reasons behind the customers’ lack of interest in the product.

The Appropriate Communication Channels to use

An appropriate communication channel should be one that gets the audience involved in addition to meeting the needs of the person giving the presentation. External channels of communication which include public relations, marketing, press releases, web-related strategies, and publishing books and articles should be capable of solving the problem of the presenter. The choice of the communication channel is also dependent upon the kind of information to be passed on, the urgency of the message, the content of the message, and the target group. Like in the case where a presentation needs to be done to a group of stakeholders in a company, a communication channel such as a direct talk with the audience, use of web pages and even television to present the information may be considered.

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The Considerations to Keep In Mind Given the Diversity of the Audience

It is important to make the presentation in a clear language to cater to the diverse nationalities of the audience (Locker, and Kienzler, 2008). It may also be important to use/add graphics in the presentation as they will provide a visual picture that will make it easy for the audience especially the nonspecialists to gain a clear understanding of the complex terms. In addition, the use of examples so as to simplify the content of the material can be employed in the presentation. Moreover, it may be necessary to either remove or add some information to the document prepared earlier in order to have it suit the diversity of the audience (Locker and Kienzler, 2008).

How to Ensure That the Message Being Passed across is Effective

One can ensure the effectiveness of the message he or she is passing across by involving the participation of the audience, which will give immediate feedback on the level of involvement of the audience (Locker and Kienzler, 2008). Moreover, the audience can be allowed to ask questions or give comments on various issues being discussed. Another measure that can be used is the administration of questionnaires at the end of the presentation, which will help in assessing the audience’s understanding of the information being passed to them (Locker, Kienzler, 2008).

Conclusion

Audience analysis is a very crucial procedure before a speech is given because it enhances the presenter’s understanding of the audience in terms of their religion, culture, ethnicity, tastes, preferences, lifestyle, and educational achievements. This will help in preventing bias, misconceptions, and prejudice during the presentation of the speech. Therefore, it is important that once the analysis of the audience has been done, an adaptation of the material to the audience’s needs should be done so as to enhance effective communication with the audience.

References

Locker, K. Kienzler, D. (2008). Business and Administrative Communication. New York: MacGraw-Hill Irwin.

McGee. (1999). Important Characteristics of your Audience. Web.

Online Technical Writing. (n.d).Online Technical Writing: Audience Analysis. 2010. Web.

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