Producers need to understand the consumer terms used by the advertising and product placement industry when working with distributors, product placement and premium placement representatives, advertising agencies, and public relations and promotion companies. These terms are from reporting agencies like Nielsen Media Research, or Arbitron.

Know Your Audience BetterNielsen and Arbitron research consumer behaviour  and categorize consumers by age, income, lifestyle, education, gender, etc. These Such audience research tools make it easier for a producer to describe his target audience to advertising and promotion entities in terms of demographic and lifestyle information.

Say, for example, the target audience is men aged 18-34 who are college graduates, watch at least two movies a month, are active on a social network and download music once a month and own a mountain bike. Using the data from Nielsen and Arbitron, a producer can learn where the largest concentrations of this population live, what TV programs they watch, if they watch movies on a laptop or at a theatre, etc., and make assumptions about the best ways to reach them.

It is critical for producers to become familiar with this reliable data and become comfortable with the language used in the reporting. Once they can pinpoint the preferences of their audience, they can devise release strategies, create more-effective marketing campaigns, review media buys, and project more accurately the picture’s earnings.

Many producers are skilled at presenting the creative highlights of their pictures to distributors. But the most successful pitch meetings with distributors occur when producers present information about their project’s target audience as it pertains to the distributor’s bottom line.

Fundamental core information for the distributor includes: target audience data, comparable data from recently released pictures, and estimated gross receipts in the distributor’s territory. While distributors have their own sources of information and evaluation processes, giving the distributor the core information they need to make a decision puts the producer in the strongest position to negotiate.