Who is your audience?

Knowing who your audience is and who else it could be, are important factors to think about as you plan your digital output and the choice of delivery channels for it.

It may come as no surprise that digital audiences grew during 2020 – 2021 as a result of the restrictions on in-person engagement.  What might be more surprising however, is how they grew and who was engaging in the different types of digital output.

Our research* discovered that while the audiences for video games remained largely the same (in both number of players and their demographics) during this period, for other types of digital experiences, audiences grew across a wide range of age groups.  Our survey work revealed that those most likely to tune into a livestream theatre or opera performance were 55-64 year olds – so it might be that your digital consumers are not the younger demographic you imagine it to be!


What does the audience want?

Whoever your target audience is, the most popular reasons to engage with a digital experience, regardless of age, included: the opportunity to ‘share’ an experience remotely, the chance to learn something new and simply for entertainment.

To ensure your digital audience gets the best out of their experience and engages with you in the future, our research suggested that good broadband speed, avoiding technical hiccups and reimagining productions specifically for an online experience will all make the difference.  As you plan your output, identifying and communicating the technical requirements for a good audience experience might help manage expectations.  If your digital experience is on-line, consider how your audience will enjoy a production differently from an in-person event.  How can it feel like a ‘shared’ occasion, are there physical items that could add to the overall experience, can you build the anticipation?

Our research suggested that chat functions were especially valued by age groups 25-34 and 35-41.  This could be one way of helping to build a sense of shared experience.

It seems that most people responding to our survey did not have a preference about the duration of digital content – so perhaps the length of your output does not need to be cut short for an on-line audience who, it appears, are happy to tune in to the entirety of an experience.


*DREEm’s audience experience survey ran from October 2020 to December 2021 and received 889 responses.