1. What is an audience?
    • An audience is who the product is aimed at or who is going to use the product.
  2. What are the characteristics of audience?
    • When designing an ICT product such as websites, PowerPoint and databases, etc., you should consider who is going to use it.  There are a range of audience characteristics that should be taken into account:
      • Age
      • Gender
      • Income level
      • Interests
    • These things should be considered before the product is created.  By knowing who will use the product, you can ensure that it will be possible for them to use it and that it will interest them.
    • Characteristics of an audience:
    • Age:-  This can affect whether or not someone will be interested in your product.  For example; Website for children aged 6 and under.  The large font styles, child-like content and colourful pages would attract this audience.
    • Gender:-  Products should be designed towards a gender in order to ensure that they attract the right type of person.  For example; Website for younger girls.  The pink colour, toy dolls and beauty content would attract this audience.
    • Income:-  ICT products can be aimed at people with different income levels.  For example; Website to promote and sell expensive houses.  The houses on display and clear prices would put off people with lower income.
    • Interests:-  Knowing your customer’s interests can help you decide on content.  For example; Website for fans of Classic Rock.  The website should have precise content.  The news articles, songs, videos and images would keep the target audience coming back to the site.
    • Disabilities:-  Knowing if your audience include people with disabilities can help you to design the best possible product.  For example;  In a  website use contrasting colours between background fonts.  Use large fonts and keep the content simple.  This will help visually impaired users to access the content.
  3. What are the needs of an audience?
    • Different audiences have different needs and the developers of an ICT product have to make sure that they meet as many of those needs as possible.  The more needs that the ICT product caters for, the more likely that the intended audience will be able to use it.
    • Some needs:
    • Young children:-
      • Bright and cheerful colours
      • Animations and sounds
      • Lots of pictures
      • Less text
      • Simple wording
      • Large text fonts
      • Games/activities for content
      • Easy to use (click buttons rather than type)
    • Teens / Adults:-
      • Attractive colours (not bright)
      • Interesting content (school work, hobbies, social media)
      • Balance of pictures and text
      • Uncluttered (use white space)
      • Don’t use childish language
      • Clear fonts
      • Use bullet fonts (easier to absorb information)
    • Seniors:-
      • Contrasting colours (easier to read)
      • Include clear instructions
      • Use larger font sizes than normal
      • Minimise the use of technical terms
      • Consistent design (navigation buttons in the same place, etc.)
      • Easy to use (click buttons rather than type)
  4. Why solutions should meet the needs of the audience?
    • If you don’t produce ICT solutions that are built for a specific audience, you could run into a variety of problems:
      • Can’t read fonts:-  If your audience are older, they could have eye sight problems.  Standard sized fonts and poor consideration for colour schemes could make text difficult for them to read.
      • Can’t understand wording:-  If your audience is very young children and you use complex wording, there is a good chance that they won’t understand.  This will make the product useless to them.
      • Not interesting enough to use:-  If the content of your ICT product is not interesting enough for your target audience, they won’t use it.
        • For example; talking about Doremon on a website that is supposed to be for adults is unlikely to hold their interest.
      • No attraction:-  Attracting correct people to use an ICT product is often accomplished with colour schemes.
        • For example; attracting children to read a PowerPoint would require bright, cheerful colours.  This would draw them to look at the slides.
        • Teens and adults are more drawn to well designed, professional looking products that use complimentary colour schemes.
      • Can’t use the product:-  If you make a complex product that requires a lot of typing or uses lots of buttons, this would be too difficult for a child to use.
    • By knowing who the product is aimed at before you you start to build it, you can ensure that steps are taken so that the product is suitable. There is a better chance that the product will be used and will be successful.

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