Science Fair Project Encyclopedia
A media market, broadcast market, or simply market is a region where the population can receive the same (or similar) television and radio station offerings, and may also include other types of media including newspapers or Internet content. They can coincide with metropolitan areas, though rural regions with few significant population centers can also be designated as markets. Conversely, very large metropolitan areas can sometimes be subdivided into multiple segments. While it is human nature to try to classify things strictly, these regions overlap, meaning that people residing on the edge of one media market may be able to receive content from other nearby markets as well. They are widely used in ratings, which are compiled in the United States by Nielsen Media Research (television) and Arbitron (radio).
Markets are identified by the largest city, which is usually located in the center. However, geography and the fact that some metropolitan areas have large cities separated by some distance can make markets have unusual shapes and result in two, three, or more names being used to identify a single region. In North America, radio markets are generally a bit smaller than their television counterparts, as broadcast power restrictions are stricter for radio than TV, and TV reaches further via cable. AM band and FM band radio ratings are sometimes separated, as are broadcast and cable television. Market researchers also subdivide ratings demographically between different age groups, genders, and ethnic backgrounds; as well as psychographically between income levels and other non-physical factors. This information is used by advertisers to determine how to reach a specific audience.
A Designated Market Area® (DMA) is a group of counties in the United States that are covered by a specific group of television stations. The term was coined by Nielsen Media Research. There are 210 DMAs in the United States.
The size of a DMA is determined by the number of television households (homes with a TV) contained within that area, and the percentage of the area's population in relation to the entire U.S.. These figures are then used to determine Nielsen ratings for specific television shows and stations.
Canada also has a similar system, run by the Bureau of Broadcast Measurement (BBM ).
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