$ 90.00  USD
  • Course Code:  JN09

  • Term:  Self Paced

  • Open for Enrollment

  • Self-paced

  • Course Author(s)
    Chris Birkett

Discount Price:   $ 90.00   USD
Original Price:   $ 150.00   USD
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The business of journalism - Creating a brand and building an audience

Self Paced

  • Circles
    Thomson Foundation


Please contact journalismnow@thomsonfoundation.org if you are having difficulties enrolling into this course

This course includes a one-to-one 1 hour video conference feedback session with Chris Birkett who will also mark your course work.


This course carries 10 hours of Continuing Professional Development (CPD) credits.



This course will help you learn about two of your audiences: your core audience (the loyal viewers/readers/listeners who love your output and consume it regularly) and your discretionary audience (the people who only tune in when there's a big story).  We'll see how those part-timers can become part of your core audience.


"It's easy to apply the principles. I started applying them right away and used the ideas in a presentation in the officeJohn from Kenya. 



During this course, you will:

  • understand what strategies to use to attract, grow and retain audiences
  • appreciate the difference between ‘core’ and ‘discretionary’ audiences
  • see how news organisations try to attract a core audience through key 'influencers' like design, schedule, specialism and marketing. 
  • learn the golden rules of keeping the discretionary audience with you, e.g. humanising stories, offering live shots, using bold pictures, etc.
  • You will be able to discuss your own business case with Chris in a mentorship session.



Chris Birkett is your course instructor.  Chris is a media consultant with the Thomson Foundation and has previously worked in senior editorial positions at BBC News, Sky News and the Telegraph Media Group.


Helping Chris are:

  • John McAndrews, a programme maker with more than twenty years top-level experience of news and current affairs. 
  • Charlotte Kilbane, news editor at Eyewitness News in South Africa.
  • Fred Mwasa, deputy editor-in-chief of a Rwandan media group which has the most popular You Tube news channel in the country.
  • Ben Clissitt, former executive editor at the Telegraph Media Group.
  • Richard Evans, senior lecturer in journalism at City, University of London


The aim is to help you understand how audiences are built and kept, through a combination of editorial judgment and business thinking. 

  • Section 1 provides an overview and introduces the experts 
  • Section 2 describes the core audience and the discretionary audience
  • Section 3 shows how to attract the core audience
  • Section 4 explains what brings in the discretionary consumers
  • Section 5 is the course summary



You can complete this course within 10 hours across multiple sessions.

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The business of journalism - Creating a brand and building an audience

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