Marketers may be Shifting their Messages to African-Americans

As black history month approaches, marketers have plenty of reasons to target the African-​American community with their messages.  At least one study predicts that purchasing power of this demographic will account for 9% of spending or over $1 trillion by 2013. If spending power alone isn’t enough to encourage marketers to target this population, the details from another recently released demographic study may be:

  • The typical African-​American consumer is 6 years younger than the average American and in the peak spending years. The number of these consumers between ages 18 and 49: 47%
  • Households earning $75,000: The number of African-​Americans in this segment is increasing 1.5 times faster than the rest of the population.
  • African-​Americans statistically represent more households, spending units, than Hispanics because of average family size.

Peter Franchese, co-​author of the African-​Americans in 2010 study says, “[w]e tend to think of blacks living in the inner cities and nowhere else, but that’s no longer true.” As African-​Americans move to the suburbs, Franchese expects that distinct marketing campaigns will be needed to reach this demographic. But, as they begin to assimilate into suburbia, he also believes cultural differences will begin to fade in five or ten years. Until then, marketers seeking to increase sales should target this demographic with unique ad campaigns.

[Sources: Miley, Marissa. Don’t bypass African-​Americans, Advertising Age, 2.2.09; Wasserman, Todd. Report shows a Shifting African-​American Population, Brandweek, 1.12.10]
Kathy Crosett
Kathy is the Vice President of Research for SalesFuel. She holds a Masters in Business Administration from the University of Vermont and oversees a staff of researchers, writers and content providers for SalesFuel. Previously, she was co-​owner of several small businesses in the health care services sector.