Listen Up Marketers: New Report Shows the Importance of Black Media to Black Consumers

September 24, 2012  |  

The  National Newspaper Publishers Association (aka Black Press of America) and Nielsen have released a new report, “African-American Consumers: Still Vital, Still Growing 2012 Report,” finding that black consumers turn to black media outlets to find items of relevance to them. This may seem like a no-brainer, but the report also found that advertising in black media only represents a small portion of the amount spent on advertising as a whole. So there are great opportunities for companies to reach out to this market in places that they’re turning to for information.

“Marketers underestimate the opportunities missed by overlooking Black consumers’ frustration of not having products that meet their needs in their neighborhoods,” NNPA chairman Cloves Campbell says in this story on Politic365. “And companies that don’t advertise using Black media risk having African-Americans perceive them as being dismissive of issues that matter to Black consumers.”

The report found that an overwhelming majority, 91 percent, of blacks think black media is relevant to them. Another big majority, 81 percent, think products advertised in black media are relevant to them. And brand name items represent 82 percent of the purchased in black homes.

However, 2011 advertising in black media outlets was $2.1 billion. In the same year, $120 billion was spent on general mass media advertising. The report predicts that black buying power will total $1.1 trillion in 2015.

The study also highlights the importance of social media and online engagement to the black community. And notes that black consumers, especially older ones, tend to make more shopping trips, spending less than the broader population during each trip.

“As is true among non-Black households, the younger generation of Black households offset fewer overall shopping trips with higher per-trip spending than their older counterparts. But, in all instances, Black households spend less per trip than non-Black households,” the Nielsen blog writes. The black population is 14 percent younger than the broader population with a media age of 32 years old.

This report was timed to release during the Congressional Black Caucus Foundation’s annual conference. We also wrote about the roundtable discussing the link between small business ownership and the wealth gap, which took place during this conference.
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