Knowing Your Audience When Writing for Television

In order to have a successful television show, you need to know what demographic you are writing for. So before you start writing, you have to decide what age group you want to be watching, what types of people do you want to be watching, along with what kinds of messages do you want to send to those who watch.

That means deciding the genre of show you want to create. This could range from children’s, drama, murder-mystery, sitcom, comedy, and more. In addition to that, that means choosing what type of plot you want to have. If you’re writing a children’s show, you cannot be cursing or dealing with heavier topics, such as alcohol, drugs, violence, or sex. Along those same lines, if you’re writing for adults, you don’t want cheesy characters and predictable endings.

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Photo credit: ET Online

Your show will need to have some kind of consistent theme, like how One Tree Hill had constant drama with character relationships, love triangles, near-death experiences,

unrealistic scenarios that viewers chose to believe could be possible, like many of the main characters achieving their career dreams following their high school experiences.

Another example of this would be how shows like Psych and Scrubs are detective and medical based shows respectively, but they also manage to be comedies as well, which contrast most of the shows within those types of genres. Their theme is making something that is typically serious into something more lighthearted.

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Photo credit: Pinterest

With that in mind, once you know your audience, you can also market to them through social media, ads, commercials, and anything else that works for that demographic. While you’re in the process of creating your show, you could also do surveys within your target demographic to find out what they would be interested in watching.

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Photo credit: Scrubs Wikia

Through knowing your audience, you have to make your show sound appealing to them so that they will be as invested in it as you are. You want an audience who will be dedicated and come back week after week waiting to find out what happens next with their new favorite characters. But you can’t do that without knowing what they want.

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