Monday, 14 January 2013

Types of audience

Everybody has an audience. Even the hermit meditating in wilderness has an audience.
The word ‘audience’ is used here not to denote listeners of a speech alone. ‘Audience’ is used to signify the target people of a speech, writing, artistic works, deeds, business, product etc. Thus a speaker’s audience is his listeners; a painter’s audience is the spectators; a writer’s audience is the readers; for one who does charitable activities his audience are the beneficiaries. With business and banking the customers are the audience.

Any person who does something for or among the people has audience.

There are different kinds of audience to each person. Their social category or financial condition is not discussed here. Let us discuss different types of audience according to their response to whatever presented before them. For brevity, I do relate only the relation between a motivational speaker and his audience. But the same principle is applicable to all others. Kindly apply it to all other activities.

The first kind of audience understands our motive. They understand what we speak. They appreciate us in public and private. Their appreciation comes from their heart. They practice what we taught them. The result of the application of the theory is reported. They are eager to maintain a relationship with us. The relation is reciprocal.

They are the best class of audience. They give immense satisfaction. They are a motivation to go forward. Consider them as blood relatives. They will help us to fulfill our life’s mission.

The second type of audience, understands us, they appreciate us in public and private. But they never practice what we taught them. They agree to all we said. But they find it unpractical or find no reason to practice it. Great ideas are for others. They have enough of them.

These people are not bad. They are also an encouragement to us. They are doing something to keep us floating.

The third category of audience, understand every word and idea we speak, but never appreciate. They never practice the thoughts. They listen to every word and goes out without a word. If we ask them whether they could understand our thoughts, they will answer in the affirmative.

The time they spend with us is neither profitable for us nor for them. They are just ‘space fillers’. They are like green leaves of a fruitless tree. It is fine to use them to attract people, but if the tree is fruitless, they may cause negative result. If the tree has rich fruits, use the green leaves to attract other audience. At some occasions, ‘space fillers’ are also useful.

Fourth kind of audience does not understand a thing we say. For them, the whole speech is only ‘Greek and Latin’. But they agree that something ‘great’ is said. So they appreciate. They may be the first to appreciate us. They wait to have a share in the photo session. They may take down our phone number, but never contact us. They may tell many others that the speech was ‘wonderful’. But they surely fail to share even a single idea.

When comes to business, they appreciate every product, but never buys one.

They are good people. Do not annoy them. They are the spice of our meetings (seminars/conferences). They do no harm to us. Keep them along.

The last category of audience does not understand any word we speak. Since they do not understand, they make fun of us. They jeer at us. They spread negative news. They think that we are idiots and they are wise. It is foolish to train them. We can never uplift them. Waiting for their refinement is a waste of time.

Avoid them at all cost. Do not associate with them. Never try to communicate with them. Do not share any of our worthy ideas with them. They are poison to our healthy life. Minimize talk with them. It is better that they do not come to our seminars (business firm/art gallery etc.). When they go east, let us go west.

Remember the advice: “Give not that which is holy unto the dogs, neither cast ye your pearls before swine, lest they trample them under their feet, and turn again and rend you.” (The Bible, Matthew 7.6 - KJV)

Professor Jacob Abraham

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