Your audience can’t be ‘everyone’

Identifying your audience—and your competition, for that matter—is essential for devising, measuring, and fine-tuning your strategy.

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I was listening to NPR on my way home from work and heard an interview with Debra Lee, the chief executive of BET (Black Entertainment Television).

At one point, she was asked whom she defines as her competition, and she said:

“Everyone. Anyone that’s fighting for eyeballs, whether it’s a cable network, video game, movie theater—I define my competition as any entertainment outlet that’s fighting for eyeballs.”

Earlier in the interview, when asked about BET’s role, she said:

“BET’s been around for 32 years, and our role today is the same as it’s always been … to provide a platform for African-American programming and news and information for our audience. Even with the addition of all the new channels and cable and satellite and digital, there [are] still very few outlets that target African-Americans.”

Those answers seem contradictory.

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