The effect you can have
What does your content look like in somebody’s life?
I’ve been staying with my 84 year old Dad while Mum is in hospital.
Dad has Parkinson’s and watches a lot of television. He likes the morning programs then the quiz shows and the news in the late afternoon. After dinner, it’s undemanding company before bed (I suspect Dad needs a break from my talking by then).
I haven’t seen the morning shows since producing for them over twenty years ago. At home, we don’t watch TV. I’m not sure our 21 year old and nineteen year old sons realise it’s there. They’ve been streaming and YouTubing on their laptops for years.
I’d begun to think television was a dying form.
But I’m appreciating it in ways that didn’t occur to me until now.
When I worked in TV the focus was on the content – doing it faster and better than our competitors, with interviews and pictures that nobody else had.
Yet there was something we didn’t factor in: what it looks like in people’s lives.
Television content, any content, can go way beyond the creator’s intentions.
For my dad, like a lot of people, TV is company as well as content.
The morning shows start his day at home like I start my day in the office: some friendly chitchat, tales of who’s done what, bit of news, things to think about and above all, connection with other people’s lives.
Do the people making the shows realise that effect? I didn’t when I was in TV.
But after this time with dad, I can see that once we put our work into the world it becomes part of somebody else’s experience. What difference could it make if we were intentional about how we wanted to make people feel?
Dad feels connected and included by the morning show folks.
I want people to feel encouraged by my writing so they find it easier to create worthwhile content for their audience.
How do you want your audience to feel?