Knowing Your Audience
May 18, 2014
Knowing Your Audience
Before one decides to communicate information to the public, it is important to note that in today’s world of communication the general public no longer exists. The communication releases should be audience targeted; the key strategy is to identify the audience, their roles and needs, and how the message is to be delivered to achieve the intended purpose (Tennyson & Ray, 2005). The Chilean Copper Mine collapse on August 5, 2010 left 33 miners trapped for 69 days and nearly half mile underground. The collapse became a news media frenzy, which captured worldwide attention. Reporters were on stand-by and ready to give up-to-date information as it became available. What you may not know is that the rescue operation involved millions of dollars, specialist from NASA and drilling experts from various countries. People who have never crossed paths or knew of one another’s existence pulled together to help those trapped have another chance at life. During this event, the audience (viewing and on site) was comprised of the families, coworkers, friends, and community. A hopeful, transfixed world waited eagerly for each miner to emerge from the darkness. As the world waited, many questions were asked, some unanswered. In society, each of us comes from different backgrounds and roles. Despite our differences we all shared a common bond of emotional concern. Addressing the audience in a time of uncertainty and traumatic events, the speaker needs to have the understanding that emotions are high and the slightest word or comment could create an explosive backlash. In a time of anxiety, stress and heartache words become more powerful, this is all the more reason to plan carefully. One needs to be considerate and comforting to create a calm and trusting environment. Before speaking with the audience, whether addressing internal personnel or public, the speaker must obtain all the...
References: Franklin, J. (2010). The Washington Post: Trapped Chilean Miners, Families Frustrated Over Mail Delivery. Retrieved from http://www.washingtonpost.com/wp-dyn/content/article/2010/09/05/AR2010090503426.html
Tennyson, P. A., & Ray, K. (2005). Reaching Today’s Utility Audiences: Why There is no Such Thing as the General Public. American Water Works Association. Journal, 97 (1), 49-49-51. Retrieved from http://search.proquest.com/docview/221571012?accountid=45049
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