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Nielsen, NNPA Release Report on Growth of African-American Consumer

WI Web Staff Report | 9/21/2012, 11:06 a.m.

A consumer group which continues to experience population growth, has unique generational behavioral trends and characteristics, and a projected buying power of $1.1 trillion by 2015, African-Americans are still a viable market segment full of business opportunities, according to the African-American Consumers: Still Vital, Still Growing 2012 Report released by Nielsen and the NNPA today.

Released during the Congressional Black Caucus Foundation's (CBCF) 42nd Annual Legislative Conference, the report is the second of three annual installments of a collaboration between Nielsen, a global provider of information and insights into what consumers watch and buy, and the National Newspaper Publishers Association (NNPA), a 72-year-old federation of 200 Black community newspapers.

"Our collaboration with the NNPA has been successful," said Susan Whiting, vice chair, Nielsen. "NNPA's insertion of the report into its 200 publications allows Nielsen access to millions of African-American consumers, and allows us to share vital information that will help increase the awareness of Blacks' consumer power."

The 2012 report highlights important subsectors of the population, unique lifestyles, purchasing and viewing habits, and also sheds light on the disparities in advertising dollars spent with African-American media.

"Marketers underestimate the opportunities missed by overlooking Black consumers' frustration of not having products that meet their needs in their neighborhoods. 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," said Cloves Campbell, chairman, NNPA. "This report demonstrates what a sustainable and influential economic force we are."

The number of Blacks in America has reached almost 43 million. With a healthy representation of today's population, coupled with an attractive collective buying power, businesses have opportunities to increase market share with Black consumers.

Keeping the Black community informed and educated is one of the goals of the Congressional Black Caucus Foundation.

"By providing a resource that demonstrates how we can use our collective buying power, we are providing a service that is beneficial to the individual consumer and our collective communities at the same time," said Elsie L. Scott, president and CEO of CBCF.

Collaborations with community organizations helps Nielsen establish a corporate reputation that is valued and trusted among consumers.

"Nielsen's collaborative efforts with organizations such as the NNPA and the CBCF demonstrates unity and reinforces the company's credibility with Black consumers," said Rev. Jacques DeGraff, co-chair, Nielsen's external African-American Advisory Council (AAAC). "By engaging consumers in the conversation about economic power, the outcome can lead to improved products, more penetrating marketing messages and enhanced corporate/consumer partnerships in our communities," said Victor Bullock, co-chair, AAAC.

Key insights from the report include:

  • Advertising spending in Black media totaled $2.10 billion in 2011, compared to $120 billion spent with general market media during the same time period.
  • 91% of Blacks believe that Black media is more relevant to them.
  • Brand name products represent 82% of Black households' total purchases compared to 31% for private labels.
  • 81% of Blacks believe products advertised on Black media are more relevant to them.
  • 54% of African-Americans own a smartphone, a 21% increase from last year's ownership.
  • 54% of the Black population is under 35; compared to 47% of the general population.
  • 48% of Black grandparents live with their grandchildren and serve as primary caregivers.
  • African-American Baby Boomers (45-64) spend more time at the stores or grocers, fast food restaurants and the gym, and they prefer television and print as primary media sources.
  • Generation Y (18-34) African-Americans are more likely to spend time at someone else's home and select radio, mobile phones and gaming consoles as their media of choice.

To download a copy of the report click here or visit www.nielsenwire.com or www.nielsen.com/africanamerican.

Nielsen Holdings N.V. (NYSE: NLSN) is a global information and measurement company with leading market positions in marketing and consumer information, television and other media measurement, online intelligence, mobile measurement, trade shows and related properties. Nielsen has a presence in approximately 100 countries, with headquarters in New York, USA and Diemen, the Netherlands. For more information, visit www.nielsen.com.

The National Newspaper Publishers Association, also known as the Black Press of America, is a 72-year-old federation of more than 200 Black community newspapers from across the United States. Since World War II, it has also served as the industry's news service, a position that it has held without peer or competitor since the Associated Negro Press dissolved by 1970. In 2001, the NNPA, in association with the NNPA Foundation, began building the BlackPressUSA Network the nation's premier network of local Black community news and information portals.