Your Audience

Someone somewhere touches a button… and there’s your news. If you’ve done your job well, that someone is fulfilled intellectually, emotionally and even socially. The greater the fulfillment, the greater the likelihood they’ll come back for more.

The NPR system has deep roots in local communities. Stations — and their news departments — seek to build relationships with people they serve.

In this section, we explore what public radio listeners have come to expect of us, how we know that, and ways to build upon it.


Public radio has amassed a body of knowledge about the listening public. This knowledge has informed numerous national and local programming decisions. More importantly, it explains the push toward greater news and information on public radio.


  • CPB Studies
  • Local News Research

more: Your Audience → Research


We have plenty of evidence to instruct us in what audiences want. Journalists allow this understanding to inform our judgment, but not to drive it.


  • Intellectual Needs
  • Emotional Needs
  • Social Needs

More: Your Audience → Expectations


The audience relationship is something to be cultivated. The news department may need some nudging to be more proactive, accountable and interactive with the public. This does not mean getting cozy with sources. Rather it’s about serving people better.


  • Proactivity
  • Accountability
  • Interactivity

more: Your Audience → Relations

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