Segmentation can still work for TV

Torin Douglas is right to question the conclusions of the Barwise report about the BBC’s digital TV services (MW October 22). The report concludes: “Television is a mass medium, with only weak segmentation, not a niche medium.”

Since the BBC has committed 80 per cent of its resources for new services on channels targeting viewers under 35 years old, Barwise rightly focused on the connection between channel viewing and age.

A critical flaw in the BBC’s strategy, he said, was the belief that it could target programmes at specific groups – in this case age groups.

Every shred of evidence in the report showed that other than at the extremes of the age spectrum (the under-fives) the targeting of a channel at a specific age group did not work.

So far so good and so far Barwise cannot be faulted. Where Mr Douglas is right is questioning the evidence in the report to generalise the conclusion about niches to factors other than age.

The BBC’s focus on a narrow age band may have failed, but Barwise is wrong to conclude from this that all forms of niche TV channels, not based on age, will suffer the same fate.

Dick Stroud

Managing director

20plus30

London SW1

Latest from Marketing Week

PLEASE SIGN IN OR REGISTER. IT'S FREE, QUICK AND EASY!

Access Marketing Week’s wealth of insight, analysis and inspiration that will help you develop as a marketer and leader.

Register and receive the best content from the only title 100% dedicated to serving marketers' needs.

We’ll ask you just a few questions about what you do and where you work, so we can make Marketing Week more relevant to you.

Register now

THE BEST CONTENT

Our award winning editorial team and columnists will ask the biggest questions about the biggest issues on everything from strategy through to execution to help you navigate the fast moving modern marketing landscape.

THE BIGGEST ISSUES

From the opportunities and challenges of emerging technology to the need for greater effectiveness, from the challenge of measurement to building a marketing team fit for the future, we will be your guide.

PERSONAL AND PROFESSIONAL DEVELOPMENT

Information, inspiration and advice from the marketing world and beyond that will help you develop as a marketer and as a leader.

Dedicated to developing your skills and helping you achieve marketing excellence. Find guidance on leadership, professional development and the latest industry jobs.

Having problems?

Contact us on +44 (0)20 7292 3711 or email subscriptions@marketingweek.com

If you are looking for our Jobs site, please click here