Assignment 2

Unit 3: Research and Techniques
Purpose of Research
So, let’s say you are about to start a project as a media producer. You’d
want to jump right in with the script yeah? No, you are wrong. Before you
even come up with the idea you want to use for the final piece you must
do one extremely important thing which will guide you to success and
help your project to gain a pretty good status.
The first thing you need to do is research. This isn’t what you’d first think.
It’s not researching cameras and whatever to get a better knowledge. It’s
research which involves getting feedback from other people to help you
get a better overall piece of media at the end of the project. There are a
few things you must thing about when doing this research.
Let’s start with the Audience. Considering for a student, the project isn’t
going to be on a large scale nor televised so this is the one you want to
focus on more than the others because doing the correct research on this
specific area gets more people actually watching what you have produced.
So, basically as you are planning the main production idea you must
consider the audience.
For example, what are the ages of the people you want to watch this,
what type of people would be intrigued into watching it? (This is called
audience profiling) This is because finding the target audience early on
will help you a lot in the future when getting a solid idea of the production.
We do audience research to find out the taste of the audience. It can be
used to gain specific feedback to ensure a production is successful. One
other thing I should mention is that audience research is primary. (I will
get into more detail with that later on.)
The methods of audience research that are most handy are
questionnaires, I’m sure you already know what they are as you most
likely already have experience in using them. These are easy to make and
carry out and they help you receive Quantitative data. Another method
you could use is Vox Pop which involves recording the public’s opinions
and answers to questions of things you have asked them. For example the

news uses this method pretty often. This data you receive from doing this
method will be Qualitative.

Pros and Cons of Audience Research
Pros –

It’s very good for collecting information to determine demographics
of audiences to help you out with the productions ideas as a whole.
 Carrying out Vox Pop and Questionnaires are very straight forward
and easy to do, all you need is a normal/busy location, and people.
 Greatly helps in which way to market the production.
Cons If you sent the questionnaire out as an email you can never
determine how many people will actually get back to you and this
will affect the end results you get because not many people may
actually reply meaning you won’t get enough results you need.
 Must make sure there is a variety of male and female people who
you are sending the questionnaire’s out to or doing a Vox Pop with
otherwise the results could be bias depending on male of female
opinions on the ideas you tell them about.

Now let’s move onto the Market section. It is used for discovering what
people want, need or believe. The purpose of Market Research in the
media industry is to determine whether a piece will be accepted amongst
different demographics, e.g. gender, age, location, culture, income levels
and many other variables. This is focused on mainly for people looking to
make money from the production meaning it’s going to be a large project
and a budget is going to be involved. Market research is used to gather a
target market from a set of information you will gather, it’s also a key
factor in maintaining competitiveness over competitors. The main point of
market research is to help you gain insight or support decision making
throughout the production process. For example say you’ve got the idea
for the production and aren't sure how it will be viewed you can have a
market research experiment to get some info from potential viewers.

For a large scale production you would have to look at the recent films
that have been released and see the genre of them to see if there is a
demand on action films for example meaning if you were to make an
action film more people are going to watch it as there is high demand for
them at the point in time.
Also doing a bit of research into your competitors will also help as you
can compare your idea to theirs and more importantly make sure it’s
better. So market research is important to get an idea of what things
people are looking for and what type of films are on demand to the public.
All these things will help you get a better outcome.
Why does traditional market research still work?
People get it. Surveys and polls are a known quantity. Those in the
industry know how to ask the right question to assemble the necessary
data, so it’s a comfortable, obvious way to mine thoughts and opinions.
It’s easy to explain. Everyone knows what “In a recent survey…”means, so
traditional methods make it easier for researchers to explain exactly how
they got their results. It’s a simple process of survey, subject, and
response that can be tailored for just about any topic.
Pros and Cons of Market Research
Pros –

Cost effective, you really get the information you need if you do this
 Knowledge of Industry, it helps to know what you are doing when
you are carrying out this type of research.
Cons –

Insufficient tools and resources, maybe you don’t have access to
create a questionnaire or the stuff you can get your hands on ends
up being out of date, being careful with things like that.
 Doing this research takes time, quite a lot in fact

When making the idea for the project you would need to carry out
Production Research. This research will allow you to identify what
resources you will need to launch the end piece and whether your project
would be profitable within the current market. Production Research will
give you an idea of what factors, whether controllable or uncontrollable,

could affect the production of your project. Controllable factors include
promotion and distribution, whereas uncontrollable factors can include
technology, competition and cultural changes.
There are a few areas you must consider when doing this type of research.
Finance - You need to know where your finances will be coming from to
produce the project. Would you require sponsorship? How would you
balance income and expenditure? Where would you advertise, e.g.
magazines, TV, radio, Internet? You would also need to know of any
upcoming releases that may affect your views, either negatively or
Personnel – Does the production team have enough skills to produce the
piece? If not would the team require training or would you employ
temporary crew with the specialist skills required?
Equipment and Technology - Do you currently have up to date software
or would you purchase more advanced software? Do you need additional
hardware, e.g. computers, higher spec monitors? Will you purchase this
hardware or would you hire it?
Once you have considered all of these things when doing production,
market and audience research you have then pretty much done all the
correct research in order to start the production as you have information
regarding all of those areas that will help you out to get the best outcome
possible on the project.

Primary and Secondary Research

Primary research – This involves going out and gathering new data that
has not been collected before. For example, surveys using questionnaires
or interviews with groups of people in a focus group. For example you
could get someone who is part of the production team to go out into the
public and collect first-hand information from the public to gain knowledge
on either the audience side of things of the market side of things.
Pros of Primary Research
Easy to do, takes not long to go out and find some information
that will be really handy for you.
Can do what you want i.e.: surveys, phone surveys, mail
surveys, face to face surveys etc, you have control of what
type of results and information you are getting after research.

Quick and cheap for a small sample.

Can get Pacific answers that you want to know i.e.: only letting

the answer be yes or no.
Cons of Primary Research

Conducting primary research can be time consuming.
May not get the accurate results what you want.
Large scale can be time consuming.
Can cost lots.

Secondary research – This involves gathering existing data that has
already been produced. For example going online and finding data that
you have not gathered yourself.
Pros of Secondary Research
Easy to access.
 Quick to find.
 Often the only/best resource.

Cons of Secondary Research

Might not have all of the information that you need.
The information that you have found may be out of date.
Not all of the data that you find will be correct unless you find
it in an old book or it comes from the main source.

Qualitative and Quantitative Data
Qualitative –
Qualitative data is information that describes something. It focuses on
things you can qualify in words or pictures, instead of numbers. Research
methods include focus groups, individual interviews and observations.
• Your friends' favourite films

• Most common given around where you live
• How people describe the smell of a new aftershave
Quantitative –
Quantitative research is based on numerical analysis and statistics.
Quantitative research can be used to quantify attitudes, opinions,
behaviours and other variables.
• Counted (called "discrete data") or
• measured (called "continuous data")
Advantages of Qualitative Research

Great for exploratory purposes

In depth and richness of information not possible with quantitative
data alone
Disadvantages of Qualitative Research

 Moderators may be more prone to accusations of bias and personal

Advantages of Quantitative Research
Fast to carry out
Much more cost efficient and cheap
Allows researchers to test specific hypotheses
Disadvantages of Quantitative Research

 Don’t get specific details that you might be able to achieve with

So let’s just say you ignored everything I just told you about and decided
to go on with the project and complete it without taking any of the advice,
well it’s not gonna turn out great for you. I’ll tell you why.
If you don’t do any research you are not gonna know peoples general
opinion on the film you have created as you wouldn’t have asked their
opinion on your film idea in the first place as you didn’t do any primary
research, so you’ve already failed in that part… Also you’re not gonna get
the most out of the film as when you are doing the research in a way you

are advertising your film as you are letting people know about it so they
will be looking out for it, but obviously as you didn’t talk to anyone that
means no one will know about your film when it is first released.
Then it comes to the part of getting things wrong with the production, if
you didn’t research into things that people actually want to watch for
example action films or whatever, you could have got the idea of your film
completely wrong because it could be some genre that no one wants to
watch but you didn’t know that as you didn’t research what people
actually like to watch.
In conclusion to my conclusion just please do the research… It’ll give you
a whole load of help when developing the ideas of the production and you
most certainly will get a better outcome.
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