Marketplace: TV Niche News


This lesson printed from:


NewsCompetition is affected by many things. One important influence on competition is the demographic (description of the consumer) of a particular product or market. In February 2002 the television news market was targeting a new demographic. In today's lesson, you will learn why the news market's targeted demographic changed and how this change affected competition between news networks.


In this lesson, you will listen to an audio file (from 22:00 through 26:40) about the changing demographics of news market consumers. While listening, you will use an interactive note-taker to record supporting details about three of the story's main ideas. Then, using your notes, you will answer questions related to the story.


Activity 1:

Listen to the Marketplace audio file 'TV Niche News' from 22:00 through 26:40.

While you are listening, use the note-taker to record major concepts and supporting details. These are the three main ideas you will be focusing on today are:

  • Why the Under-34 Demographic Avoids Cable or Network News Programs
  • Successful Strategies Cable and Network News Programs Use to Attract the Under-34 Demographic
  • Why Cable and Network News Executives Would Like to Attract the Under-34 Demographic

As you listen to the segment, record any words which you don't know or words that may be important economic terms.

Then listen to the audio file (from 22:00 to 26:40) again to gather additional supporting details and possible definitions of the vocabulary words using context clues, and record the details and definitions in your note-taker.

Finally, you will be asked a series of questions related to the story.

Activity 2:

The previous activity should help you see into why network news programs are interested in attracting the under-34 demographic and why the under-34 demographic is generally not interested in network news. Create an outline for a network news program that will attract the under-34 demographic, in competition and compete with the existing news programs. Consider the following as you create your outline:

  • What main topics in the news will your program focus on?
  • How will you directly involve the under-34 demographic in your news program?
  • In addition to younger newscasters, a faster pace, and topics of interest, what will your program offer that others may not?
  • What advertisers will you attract with your news program?
  • Are you interested in maintaining your viewers over time or continuing to add new under-34 viewers?


Discuss the concepts covered in this lessons. You should be able to describe why there has been a change in the demographic targeted by cable and network news programs, and how the change has affectedcompetition in the news market.


Print out your note-taker outline and submit it to your teacher. Your work should reflect an understanding of how changing demographics in the news markets affects competition.

Turn in your outline from Activity 2. Your outline should display an understanding of what news programs will have to do in order to compete for a new demographic.


1. Continue thinking about the concept of competition by completing the following:

Marketplace: Corporate Leapfrog 

What's Your Angle?