Understanding The Global Audience

Posted by By at 8 September, at 05 : 30 AM Print

Understanding The Global Audience

globeSo, you say you want to be an producer of awesome content? Audio show, video show, pick your medium but you’re going to run into the same problem in all of them: your audience is global. This is something many folks in the United States have a hard time understanding because we tend to be a very isolated group regardless to speedy plane travel and low-cost international calling plans.

Case in point, a man asks “what is club soda?” in a comment one of my cocktail shows. The response was one that I’ve seen before and will no doubt see again, “what is club soda????????? How did you log onto a computer and use finger muscles to type that question? … In another episode he uses cream for a white Russian let me know if you want to know what that is and I’ll explain…” Obviously the comment was left with a sarcastic tone but the point was made clear, someone doesn’t understand my international audience.

There are no stupid questions, only ignorant responders and I don’t mean this in a bad way. Some folks do not understand the idea of an international world where not everyone speaks English or the same English as we do in the United States. What is “Club Soda?” That’s actually a very good question but to answer it you first must do some investigation. Turns out the first commenter is from the United Kingdom while the responder was from the United States and these separate regions define carbonated products differently from one another.

Club Soda isn’t a global term, it’s not like “Coca Cola,” a product heavily marketed across many countries with a symbol, trademark and billion dollar namesake. The same can be said for the origin of Lemonade which may be entirely different from one country to another as may be the cocktail garnish we know here in the United States as a “Maraschino Cherry.”

We’re trying to create excellent video and audio content that streams the globe from time zone to time zone. However, we’re only human, we cannot understand every culture on earth and we cannot predict what people may or may not understand within our content. But, we can keep an open mind when the “stupid question” arises and rather than be condescending in our response, ask for the persons origin and a bit about their culture.

By opening a line of communication with your international audience it’s important to respect their efforts to speak your native tongue (no matter how bad) and understand that not all forms of English have the same meaning in all countries. After you’ve opened communications with your international audience you’re bound to not only answer their question in more detail but learn a bit about another culture in the process.

Creating content is a two-way road and while you may be teaching someone something, there is no limit to your own knowledge absorbed by those around you and abroad.

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