Target Market News®
The Black Consumer Market Authority








Advertising & PR News
Marketing News
TV & Cable News
Radio News
Magazine News
Newspaper News
Internet News

Retailing News
Consumer Research

Expenditure Data
People in the News
Industry News
Company Bios and

Are you getting the latest industry news when it happens via e-mail

Click here for free delivery of the Target Market News Bulletin
You'll receive news of breaking stories, exclusives, updates and headlines on the latest developments in African American marketing and media

Frequently requested data on African American consumers

Black Buying Power:
  $656 Billion (2003)

Black U.S. Population:
  38.3 million

Top Five Black Cities
  - New York
  - Chicago
  - Detroit
  - Philadelphia
  - Houston

Top Five Black Metros:
  - New York-New Jersey
  - Washington-Baltimore
  - Chicago-Gary
  - Los Angeles
  - Philadelphia

Top Five Expenditures:
 - Housing 145.2 bil.
 - Food 56.5 bil.
 - Cars/Trucks 32.6 bil.
 - Clothing 23.0 bil.
 - Health Care 18.0 bil.

Click here for more stats from "The Buying Power of Black America."

Get quick access to key
U.S. Census 
Bureau Data

Click here to go to African-American Census Bureau data

© 2004 by
Target Market News Inc.

All rights reserved
Business address:
228 S. Wabash Ave.
Suite 210
Chicago, IL 60604
t. 312-408-1881
f. 312-408-1867


July Consumer Confidence Survey shows more optimism on jobs than spending
Blacks, whites have similar job outlooks, but blacks more uncertain on big purchases

August 25, 2005) Blacks and whites both express more certainty their job status for the near future, according to the July 2005 Target Market News/NiaOnline Black Consumer Confidence Survey. Seventy-two percent of U.S. blacks feel secure about their current employment status for the next 90 days, compared with seventy-three percent of U.S. whites, This represents a three-point increase for both groups over responses in the the June survey.

Twenty-eight percent of blacks in the latest survey said they are not sure they will be in their current job 90 days from now, as did 27 percent of whites.

Confidence on jobs by blacks was not matched by plans to buy a big-ticket item such as a car, major appliance, or high-end electronics. Twenty-six percent of blacks said yes in the July 2005 survey, down from 29 percent in the June 2005 survey. The percentage of whites saying they would make such purchases remained the same, at 16 percent.

Though African-Americans and whites both expressed an increase in certainty about their employment status, black consumers had a significant increase in uncertainty on the purchase of big-ticket merchandise,” said Ken Smikle, president of Target Market News. “The six-point rise in blacks’ uncertainty could be the impact of rising gas prices on everyday spending. The intention, however, to make a major purchase among blacks is still much higher than that for whites [26% vs.16%].“

”Perceptions about the economy, rather than their future job status, appear to be having more impact on all consumers’ thinking about purchases,” said Cheryl Mayberry McKissack, president and CEO of Nia Enterprises. “Both blacks and whites had a three-point increase in confidence about being in their current jobs for the next 90 days.”

The latest Target Market News/NiaOnline Black Consumer Confidence Survey was conducted in July 2005 by Chicago-based Nia Enterprises, LLC through its NiaOnline Quick Response survey service ( All respondents to the survey were members of's Consumer Advisory Panel, which reaches over 125,000 black household members. The results are based on responses from 467 black respondents and 450 white respondents.

How do you feel about your job status for the next 90 days?
BLACKS                            May         June       July
Will be in current job           69%         69%         72%
May not be in current job     31%         31%         28%
Will be in current job            71%         70%       73%
May not be in current job      29%         30%       27%
Do you think you'll buy a big-ticket item in the next 90 days?

BLACKS     May              June              July
Yes             25%              29%               26%
No               51%              55%               53%
Not sure      24%              15%                21%

Yes             17%              16%              16%
No               58%              60%              59%
Not sure       25%              24%              25%

Source: TMN/Nia Online Consumer Confidence Survey for July 2005

Study finds more black women than whites use Internet for info prior to making purchases 

(August 12, 2005) Black women Internet users are more heavily influenced by online information about the products they buy than white women Internet users, suggests a new research report based on an online survey of over 1,700 women by The NiaOnline Research Monitor: The African-American Household Online examines how black women are adopting and using the Internet, as well as how they are influenced by it in their buying decisions.

Nearly 65 percent of African-American respondents to the survey said they frequently or almost always visit the web site of a product when deciding to purchase it, compared with 58 percent of white respondents. Furthermore, 16 percent of African-American respondents said their favorite web sites have a major influence on purchase decisions, versus 12 percent of white respondents.

"This makes the Internet an especially effective medium for marketers hoping to reach black families," says Cheryl Mayberry McKissack, who is founder, president and CEO of Nia Enterprises, LLC, which owns the black women's interest web community
The study is the first major, independent research report to put a spotlight on the black female consumer online.

Nia Enterprises administered the survey during Winter 2004-2005 to its opt-in, permission-based online Consumer Advisory Panel (CAP), which reaches over 125,000 African-American household members, as well as members of other ethnic groups.

The report also compares black women Internet users to their white counterparts, as well as to average black female demographic characteristics contained in U.S. Census data. The report also includes research conducted by NiaOnline during June 2005 on the impact of culturally relevant messages to black women's purchase decisions.

What the NiaOnline Research Monitor reveals is a consumer whose approach to the Internet is utilitarian. She is comfortable with using the Internet, and is more likely than her white counterparts to treat it as a no-nonsense tool for gathering information and transacting business--as opposed to a means of recreation and social interaction.
For instance, African-American respondents to the NiaOnline Research Monitor skewed much more heavily toward using E-mail for work-related purposes than white respondents--not surprising, since more than three times as many said they most often access the Internet from work (32% of black respondents versus 9% of whites).
Black women were half as likely as white women to say that their reasons for sending e-mail were “usually personal.” (39% versus 78%, respectively) Correspondingly, fewer African-American respondents than white respondents said they were likely to use e-mail to “share news about children, other family members or people” they know; while more African-American respondents said they were likely to “communicate about work-related issues and activities.”
"We decided to focus on black women online because more black women are the primary decision-makers in their households than women of other U.S. ethnic groups," says McKissack. "If you want to reach the black family, you really need to connect with women."
For more information on the NiaOnline Research Monitor contact Heather Davis, V.P. of Sales and Marketing, at 312-222-0943 or

Latest census data show black, Hispanic populations moving in different directions

By Paul Overberg
and Haya El Nasser
(August 10, 2005) The nation's two largest minority groups are following strikingly different paths: Hispanics are moving to areas with few from their ethnic group; African-Americans are moving to suburbs in the South that have large black populations, Census estimates released Thursday show.

"These are two major waves in America," says William Frey, demographer at the Brookings Institution in Washington. "One is the black return to the South. The other is Hispanics going to places where everybody else is moving, following the jobs."

The July 1, 2004, estimates show that the share of Hispanics living in counties with large concentrations of Hispanics is slipping.

In the 1990s, most Hispanic immigrants came to the USA through five "gateways": California, Texas, Illinois, New York and Florida. "Now, you're just as likely to go to Iowa, South Carolina or Tennessee," Frey says. (Click here for Top 100 Hispanic counties)

The spreading out of Hispanics challenges the communities they settle in and Hispanics themselves. Schools and local governments often are not equipped to deal with Spanish speakers.

Hispanics make up at least 5% of the population in 28 states, up from 16 in 1990, Frey says.

"You've got a very large share of the population living not in stereotypical neighborhoods where all the signs are in Spanish," says Roberto Suro, director of the Pew Hispanic Center, a research group in Washington. "There are still a lot living in densely Hispanic neighborhoods, but there are more who are scattered all over the landscape."

Some are middle-class Hispanics moving to the suburbs. Others are less-educated, poorer immigrants seeking jobs in construction, service industries and retailing.

Blacks' patterns are very different. The percentage in counties that have the largest share of blacks is inching up. More than 17 million — almost half of all blacks — live in the 11 states that were in the Confederacy, up a million from 2000. (Click here for Top 100 black counties)

Many black professionals are leaving Northern black strongholds such as Baltimore and Philadelphia and settling in mostly black suburbs of Atlanta, Birmingham, Ala., Charlotte and other Sun Belt metros.

"They have housing options," says Roderick Harrison, demographer at the Joint Center for Political and Economic Studies, a think tank specializing in African-American studies. "They're seeking places where there are other successful upper-income blacks, where people feel they'll be more comfortable."

The data also show that Texas has joined Hawaii, New Mexico and California as states whose minorities exceed 50% of the population.

June Consumer Confidence Survey shows blacks more likely to make big purchases  
Both segments remain optimistic about employment status

(July 31, 2005) The confidence that black consumers have about their job status has apparently given a boost to their confidence about buying expensive durable goods. According to the June 2005 Target Market News/NiaOnline Black Consumer Confidence Survey, African-Americans are still twice as likely as whites to buy big-ticket products such as a car or high-en electronics.

Approximately 70% of both blacks and whites in the survey said they believe they will be in their current jobs for the next 90 days. However, future job status impacts each segment differently. The confidence of blacks on buying durable goods grew by four points between May and June (25% to 29%), while confidence among whites dropped one point for the period (17% to 16%).

"The proportion of blacks planning big purchases has continued growing this summer, widening the confidence gap in that area with whites," said Cheryl Mayberry McKissack, president and CEO of Nia Enterprises in Chicago.

"We know that the economy is showing signs of improvement," said Ken Smikle, president of Target Market News, “Black workers generally will be among the first to experience any change. So long as their job status seems steady, African-Americans are more likely to pursue postponed purchases.”

The latest Target Market News/NiaOnline Black Consumer Confidence Survey was conducted in June 2005 by Chicago-based Nia Enterprises, LLC through its NiaOnline Quick Response survey service ( All respondents to the survey were members of's Consumer Advisory Panel, which reaches over 125,000 black household members. The results are based on responses from 509 black respondents and 482 white respondents.
Do you think you'll buy a big-ticket item in the next 90 days?

BLACKS     May              June
Yes             25%              29%
No               51%              55%
Not sure      24%             15%

Yes             17%              16%
No               58%              60%
Not sure      25%              24%

How do you feel about your job status for the next 90 days?
BLACKS                             May         June
Will be in current job             69%         69%
May not be in current job       31%         31%
Will be in current job             71%         70%
May not be in current job       29%         30%
Due to rounding, all categories may not add up to 100 percent )
Source: TMN/Nia Online Consumer Confidence Survey for June 2005

New Ariel-Schwab Survey: More blacks using stocks in retirement plans

(July 20, 2005) For African-Americans, who have historically lagged Whites in stock market participation, employer- sponsored retirement plans have the potential to be an effective entree into the world of investing, according to the 8th Annual Ariel-Schwab Black Investor Survey.

The survey finds that African-Americans who are saving primarily for retirement are almost twice as likely to be stock investors as those who are saving for other reasons, such as to pay for education. Whites, however, are equally likely to be investors regardless of their saving and investment goals.

Carla A. Foster, a vice president with Charles Schwab Corporation, believes that one way to continue to narrow the investment gap between Blacks and Whites is through employer-sponsored retirement plans. "We know that retirement planning is a gateway to investing for many individuals, but we learned that it is truly the key driver for African-Americans."

Ariel Capital Management President Mellody Hobson said, "A lot of us in the African-American community didn’t grow up talking about the stock market around the dinner table, but now we are talking about it around the water cooler."

Among the other findings highlighted in this year’s survey:

The percentage of higher income Blacks (households making over $50,000 annually) who own stocks or mutual funds continues to lag behind higher income Whites, with 65% of Blacks vs.80% of Whites invested in the market. Black investing has fluctuated over the years from a low of 57% in 1998 to a high of 74% in 2002; the corresponding figures for Whites have remained statistically flat, hovering around 80%.

* Home ownership rates among higher income Blacks are lower than among higher income Whites: 77% for Blacks versus 90% for Whites.

* The preference of Blacks for real estate investments continues, though it is down considerably from last year. This year, 54% of Blacks versus 39% of Whites viewed real estate as the “ best investment overall,” ahead of stocks, bonds, mutual funds and insurance. Last year, 61% of Blacks and 51% of Whites chose real estate as the best investment.

In another finding, 61% of Blacks and 55% of Whites view home improvement as a better investment than the stock market; in 2003 the corresponding figure was 76% for Blacks and 64% for Whites.

The eighth annual Ariel-Schwab Black Investor Survey was conducted by telephone between March 18 and April 8, 2005 by Argosy Research. The results are based on a random sample survey of 500 Black and 500 White households earning over $50,000 annually. The margin of error is approximately 4.5%.

To download the Black Investor Survey, log on to or

Burrell/Yankelovich Multicultural Monitor reveals latest black consumer attitudes

(July 7, 2005) When African-Americans shop, their buying decisions are influenced by how a company treats them, involves itself in their communities and portrays them in advertising. Though marketers have long been aware of these factors, they have now been confirmed by a new research study.
McGhee Williams Osse (above), co-CEO of Burrell, shared those findings today in Chicago at the Black Consumer Research and Advertising Summit, which examined the latest trends, findings and practices in marketing to African-American consumers.

The data is published in the 2005 Yankelovich MONITOR Multicultural Marketing Study, developed in collaboration with Burrell. "Identifying and recognizing important cultural connectors for the multicultural market will afford marketers important insights to help them better connect with the ethnic consumer," said Sonya Suarez-Hammond, Director of Yankelovich Inc.

According to the study, 68 percent of African Americans, compared to 46 percent of non-Hispanic whites, say how a store treats customers based on race is extremely important in deciding where to shop. A full 56 percent of African Americans compared to 17 percent of Non-Hispanic white consumers agreed that, "In the past I have felt a security guard/store clerk was watching me more closely than other shoppers."

In fact 88 percent of African Americans say discrimination is still a part of most African Americans' day-to-day lives - something amplified recently when a Paris Hermes boutique refused to allow Oprah in to shop. Hermes and other brands will find that African Americans are more receptive and loyal to brands that respect them and support their communities.

Forty six percent of African Americans compared to 28 percent of Non-Hispanic Whites said they were more inclined to buy from a company that would contribute a small amount of money towards a child's future each time a purchase was made. African Americans also want to see positive, relevant depictions of their community. Williams Osse said the report shows that African Americans are not homogenous consumers.

There is increasing segmentation among African-American consumers based upon socio-economic status, yet African Americans still largely filter every message through the lens of their ethnicity.

"Despite these segment differences, there is still a strong racial awareness that has resulted in black pride and a deep solidarity with other African Americans, which affects purchasing decisions," said McGhee Williams Osse, Co-CEO of Burrell Communications. "African Americans say they are loyal to companies that reflect an understanding of this awareness and their ethnic affinity. Marketers, who have not experienced exclusion based on race or color, may find it difficult to understand that this sensitivity exists. Yet it is a feeling that is shared by African Americans across the board, even at the highest social strata and economic brackets."

According to the study, the African American market can be broken into six socio-behavioral segments:

Emulators (11% of African Americans) - are generally students, with a median age of 17, who identify with the young urban trendsetters within the African American culture, but see themselves as unique and independent. They are trendsetters whose purchases reflect a need to be unconventional. But they also have a need for social and emotional reassurance of brands that most reflect status or achievement.

Seekers (19% of African Americans) - Share some characteristics with emulators, but are older and more disillusioned about life. They work part-time or are temporarily unemployed. They seek image and status brands that are popular among the culture. They are a median age of 40 and have a median income of $18,000.

Reachers (24% of African Americans) are strivers who are working toward the American dream, but are not on the fast track. Often single parents who care for children and/or an elderly parent, they are stressed out, they want products and services that give them the biggest bang for the buck. They are a median age of 40 and have a median income of $28,000.

Attainers (27% of African Americans) - Have a more defined sense of self and a solid plan for the future. They seek and appreciate appropriate marketing and advertising that gives them gives them useful ideas and information about how to make their lives easier and better. They have a median income of $55,000 and are a median age of 40 years old.

Elites (5% of African Americans) - Upwardly mobile African Americans who live and work in a more mainstream environment, but retain their cultural identity and allegiances. Marketers must appeal to them through a broader range of campaigns and executions generally reserved for non-Hispanic whites, but can be personalized for them. They are a median age of 46 and have a median income of $113,000.

Conservers (14% of African Americans) - An older segment with a median age of 67 and income of $38,000. This group is set in its ways and is slow to adapt to the dynamism of the African American culture. Mostly retired, their beliefs and values are deeply grounded in experience and wisdom that helped shapes their lives. Marketers must approach them in a straightforward manner.

"The bottom line is that African Americans are no more homogeneous than other consumers. "Understanding these differences will equip marketers with more practical and tactical methods of communicating to African Americans," Williams Osse said.

Phoenix Marketing launching African American investor survey to examine marketing's impact

(July 6, 2005) Juice Market Research, a division of Phoenix Marketing International announces the launch of a new syndicated market research product on active African American investors. More than 900 respondents were surveyed via the Internet from August 2004-June 2005. It is the first syndicated research product of its kind and enables investment services companies to find out which firms are viewed most favorably among African American active investors.

The reports will address:

- Advertising recall
- Aided and unaided awareness
- Overall impression
- Likelihood to consider
- Approach to investing and use of financial advisors
- Portfolio make-up by investment type and company
- Retention efficiency
- Referral source
- Demographics

The report compares active African American investors and mass affluent African American active investors to the general population of active investors including mass affluent. Mass affluent is being defined as those with $100,000 or more in investable assets.

The report will be delivered in three volumes with the first being a General Market Comparison, followed by an Advertising Study and the last being Volumetrics. The reports will be appended with demographics. The first volume will be available in early August. More information is available at

Black-themed shows are highly ranked by Nielsen's LPMs in D.C. and Philly

(June 24, 2005) Nielsen Media Research said that a review of May 2005 viewing in Washington, D.C. and Philadelphia showed that African American-themed programming ranks higher among African Americans measured in Local People Meter (LPM) samples than in set meter samples.

Local People Meters are an advanced system of meters that electronically and continuously record demographic viewing in sample homes. Nielsen is introducing them in the top ten markets, replacing the previous system of paper diaries and set meters.

Critics of LPMs have cited lower ratings among programs with predominant African-American casts and themes as a justification for opposing the introduction of a more accurate ratings system. But comparing the rankings of these programs among African American viewers in the only two markets where the LPM and meter/diary systems were operating side by side in May shows that African American-themed shows more than hold their own among African American audiences under LPMs.

Compared to the previous set meter samples, the LPM samples in these markets are larger, with more African American households. The composition of LPM samples also more closely represent the demographic composition of the communities they are measuring. Because of these factors, the LPM system is more accurate and allows Nielsen to capture a wider range and diversity of programming choices. The greater accuracy of local people meters also allows for better comparisons of how people watch television in different markets.

In Philadelphia, six of the ten most watched shows by African Americans measured by LPMs were African American-themed, compared to only two measured by the meter/diary system:

   Top Shows For African American Viewers
   May 2005
   7am-1am; African American HH Ratings

   *Show devoted to "American Idol" scandal

In Washington, D.C., three of the 30 most-watched shows among African Americans measured by LPMs were African American-themed (Girlfriends #9, Half & Half #19, and The Parkers #29), compared to two out of the top 30 measured by set meters (Girlfriends #15, and Half & Half #21). As measured by set meters, no African American-themed shows appeared in the top ten most watched shows; using LPMs, one of the ten most-watched shows by African Americans had African American themes:

   Washington, DC
   Top Shows For African American Viewers
   May 2005
   (7a-1a; African American HH Ratings)


*Show devoted to "American Idol" scandal

May Black Consumer Confidence Survey shows continued optimism on jobs, purchase plans
More blacks than whites planning big-ticket purchases

(June 23, 2005) Sixty-nine percent of African-Americans feel secure about their current employment status for the next 90 days, compared with 71 percent of whites, according to the May 2005 Target Market News/NiaOnline Black Consumer Confidence Survey.

Thirty-one percent of blacks in the latest survey said they are not sure they will be in their current job 90 days from now, as did 29 percent of whites.

When asked if they plan to buy a big-ticket item such as a car, major appliance, or high-end electronics, 25 percent of blacks said yes in the May 2005 survey, compared with 17 percent of whites. Fifty-one percent of black respondents and 58 percent of white respondents said no. Twenty-four percent of blacks said they were not sure, as did 25 percent of whites.

"As we go into the summer months, blacks remain more optimistic than whites about their plans to buy big-ticket items in the near future," observed Cheryl Mayberry McKissack, president and CEO of Nia Enterprises in Chicago.

In comparison, according to the April 2005 TMN/NiaOnline Black Consumer Confidence Survey, fifty-eight percent of African-Americans felt secure about their employment status for the next 90 days, compared with fifty-four percent of whites. Twenty percent of blacks in that survey said they were not sure they would be in their current job 90 days later, as did twelve percent of whites. 

However, in that survey and previous ones, respondents were also given the option to say "I am neither secure nor insecure about my current job." That middle option has been deleted in the May 2005 survey and will not appear in subsequent surveys.

In the April 2005 survey, 26 percent of blacks said they plan to buy a big-ticket item such as a car, major appliance, or high-end electronics, compared with 19 percent in of whites. Fifty-five percent of black respondents and 60 percent of white respondents said no in April. Eighteen percent of blacks said they were not sure, as did 22 percent of whites. (Due to rounding, numbers might not add up to 100 percent)

The latest Target Market News/NiaOnline Black Consumer Confidence Survey was conducted during the last week of May 2005 by Chicago-based Nia Enterprises, LLC through its NiaOnline Quick Response survey service ( All respondents to the survey were members of's Consumer Advisory Panel, which reaches over 125,000 household members. The results are based on responses from 534 black respondents and 512 white respondents.

Nielsen LPM data show blacks in New York had greatest growth in city's TV audience

(June 13, 2005) More people are watching more television in New York than were previously measured, according to information released from Nielsen Media Research. The segment with greatest growth rate in TV audiences was black viewers.

Among African Americans, New York's largest ethnic group, the percentage of viewers watching television increased from 25.6% in 2004 to 30.7% in 2005.The African American age group with the largest increase was Women 18-49 which increased from 25.9%% in 2004 to 31.9% in 2005.

According to measurements of electronic Local People Meters (LPMs), which were introduced in New York in June 2004, 9.1% more people watched television in May 2005 than in May 2004. The LPM information showed that, on average, 22.7% of New Yorkers were watching television throughout the day in May 2005,compared to 20.8% in May 2004 (in 2005, this ranged from 8.0% of viewers in the early morning to 40.8% during primetime). LPMs, which provide demographic information overnight, replaced the paper diary system that Nielsen had been using in sample homes for years to measure TV viewing in the New York market.

Among all adult viewers, the demographic group that showed the largest increase was Men 18-49. According to Nielsen, 18.6% of New York men in this category watched television in May 2005 on average versus 16.5% in May 2004, when diaries were used to record persons viewing. 

Local People Meters are able to detect larger numbers of viewers with greater precision because they electronically record the viewing of all household members on a continuous basis.

Nielsen also reported that New York viewers are watching a greater number of channels than was previously recorded in diaries.  According to May 2005LPM data, viewers watched 28% more channels (55 in 2005 versus 43 in 2004) than they did in May 2004.  Among viewers over 18-34, the increase was 41% (45in 2005 versus 32 in 2004); and the number of channels jumped 45% (55 in 2005versus 38 in 2004) among viewers 18-49.

Click here for more details from Nielsen

Nielsen issues data responding to people meter complaints in Washington and Philly

(June 6, 2005) Nielsen Media Research today released full-month May 2005 demographic viewing information from its Local People Meter (LPMs) samples in the Washington D.C. and Philadelphia television markets.

Nielsen delayed the rollout of its new LPM ratings system after major media outlets in Washington, D.C. and Philadelphia complained that the new system undercounts minority audiences.
The introduction of the system in those markets was postponed a month.

According to a statement, Nielsen said it will officially introduce electronic Local People meters in those markets on June 30, 2005, replacing the current ratings panel, which derives ratings from a combination of paper diaries and set meters. The information it released today for the month of May, which cannot be used for buying and selling television advertising until the service is officially introduced, Nielsen believes shows that LPMs deliver more accurate and representative ratings than the meter/diaries they will replace.

"The larger LPM samples, combined with the People Meter's continuous electronic monitoring capabilities, make LPMs a significantly more accurate ratings system," Nielsen said." LPMs do a better job of measuring all demographic groups, including people of color and hard-to-reach young audiences, and they capture viewing for a wider range of sources. The industry as a whole will benefit from their increased accuracy."

Among the key highlights of the data released today are:     

* The LPM samples are larger and more representative than the Set Meter samples.

-- In Washington, the size of the African American household LPM sample increased 29% - from 113 to 146 - while the size of the Latino and Asian household LPM samples went up 122% and 133% respectively.     

-- In Philadelphia, the size of the African American household LPM sample increased 59% - from 104 to 166 - while the size of the Latino and Asian household LPM samples went up 124% and 69%, respectively     

* When measured by LPMs, television viewing is up among key demographic groups. 

-- Among viewers 18-49, the number of people in Washington watching television during the full day is up 22% under LPMs vs. meter/diary data in the same period last year.  In Philadelphia, the number is up 15%.     

-- Total day viewing was up for more than 40 broadcast stations and cable networks in both Washington and Philadelphia under LPMs.

* LPMs more accurately capture the diversity of viewing in African American and Latino households. 

-- LPMs in Washington show that African American viewers age 18-49 watch 93% more viewing sources. In Philadelphia, the same group watches 78% more viewing sources.

-- Within the 18-49 demographic, primetime viewing for Spanish language broadcast under LPMs is up more than 300% in Washington and 67% in Philadelphia.

* Fault rates were lower in the LPM sample than in the Set Meter sample.

-- In Washington, the LPM metered (non-persons) fault rate for African American households was 11.6% vs. 16.8% for the Set Meter sample during the same period. 

-- In Philadelphia, the LPM metered (non-persons) fault rate for African American households was 11.4% vs. 20.2% for the Set Meter sample during the same period.

Click here for additional details on these results

NCM launches first comprehensive national survey of ethnic media usage

(May 31, 2005) New California Media (NCM), in partnership with the Center for American Progress (CAP) and the Leadership Conference on Civil Rights Education Fund (LCCREF), today announced the launch of the first national multilingual poll to document the collective role of ethnic media in the lives of America's ethnic communities. This groundbreaking poll marks the first time that a national study was commissioned to find out how ethnic Americans get their news and information from the media.

"Partnering with Washington's leading progressive think tank, and the public education arm of its oldest civil rights umbrella organization to undertake this poll underscores growing recognition that ethnic media are vital to America's future governance," said Sandy Close, executive director of NCM. "The U.S. Census predicts an ethnic majority society by 2050, and this poll will give us the first comprehensive data on the reach and impact of the media segment that is exploding with growth to serve them."

"At the Center for American Progress, we believe that a strong ethnic media is vital to the full expression of diversity in our nation," said CAP President John D. Podesta. "We are pleased to be joining New California Media and the Leadership Conference on Civil Rights in this important endeavor."

Wade Henderson, counselor to LCCREF and executive director of the Leadership Conference on Civil Rights said, "Our work is grounded in the belief that an informed public is more likely to support effective civil rights policies. We recognize the leadership role that ethnic media has played historically and will continue to play in the future, and are delighted to be a part of this important partnership."

Veteran pollster Sergio Bendixen, CEO of the Miami-based Bendixen & Associates, will conduct the survey in 10 languages, targeting 11 specific ethnic groups including Arab, Chinese, American Indian, Vietnamese, Filipino, Korean and African American.

"This survey will measure the media habits and sources of information of a really important group of Americans -- more than 50 million according to the Census -- who speak languages other than English and who are rarely included in public opinion surveys," Bendixen noted.

Poll results will be released at a press briefing on June 7 at the Asia Society in New York City. Representatives from the advertising industry's two major associations -- the American Association of Advertising Agencies and the Association of National Advertisers -- will discuss the poll's ramifications for the field at the June 7 press briefing. The poll's co-sponsors will discuss how the poll will help build a proactive, ongoing relationship between the progressive community and ethnic media.

NCM, founded in 1996 by the nonprofit Pacific News Service to promote ethnic media, has been a pioneer of multilingual polling since 2002, with support from a broad range of foundations and organizations, including the Ford Foundation, the James Irvine Foundation, Overbrook Foundation, the Evelyn and Walter Haas Jr. Fund, the Annie E. Casey Foundation, and the American Association of Advertising Agencies. Its first multilingual poll conducted by Bendixen & Associates in 2002 documented Hispanic, African American and Asian American ethnic media usage in California, where 40 percent of residents speak languages other than English. The poll found that over half of California's new ethnic majority relies on ethnic media as their primary source of daily news.

TMN/NiaOnline Black Confidence Survey shows black consumers still 'positive' on spending

(May 16, 2005) Fifty-eight percent of African-Americans feel secure about their current employment status for the next 90 days, compared with 54 percent of whites, according to the April 2005 Target Market News/NiaOnline Black Consumer Confidence Survey. These numbers are down slightly from the March 2005 survey, when 65 percent of blacks and 56 percent of whites said they feel secure about their current employment status.

In the latest survey 20 percent of blacks said they are not sure they will be in their current job 90 days from now, as did 12 percent of whites. Twenty-two percent of blacks said they felt neither secure nor insecure about their employment within the next 90 days, with 35 percent of whites answering they felt likewise. (Due to rounding, numbers may not equal 100 percent)

When asked if they plan to buy a big-ticket item such as a car, major appliance, or high-end electronics, 26 percent of blacks said yes in the April survey, unchanged from the March. The percentage of whites who said they would make such purchases decreased slightly, to 19 percent in April from 21 percent in March. Fifty-five percent of black respondents and 60 percent of white respondents said no in the latest survey. Eighteen percent of blacks said they were not sure, as did 22 percent of whites.

“Despite the fact that African-Americans had a seven percent decrease among those who felt confident about their current job situation, there was no change in the percent of those who intend to purchase big-ticket items,” said Ken Smikle, president of Target Market News. “Among whites, both job confidence and the intention to buy dropped. This suggests a significant difference in how both groups believe the economy will effect their spending decisions.”

The latest Target Market News/NiaOnline Black Consumer Confidence Survey was conducted during the last week of April 2005 by Chicago-based Nia Enterprises, LLC through its NiaOnline Quick Response survey service ( All respondents to the survey were members of's Consumer Advisory Panel, which reaches over 125,000 household members. The results are based on responses from 558 black respondents and 520 white respondents.

Study finds blacks, Hispanics spend twice as much as whites on video games

(May 11, 2005) Phoenix Marketing International's most recent market research study reveals that minority gamers spend almost twice as much as caucasian gamers on monthly electronic gaming purchases. According to David Pluchino, senior research manager at Phoenix "the results indicate that Gamers spend approximately $34 per month on software and/or hardware/accessories". Asians are spending the most, while Caucasians are spending the least amount of money on video games.

When asked about gaming genre preference the top three are "Action/Adventure," "Arcade" and "Racing". However, when you look at how much is being spent by preferred gaming genre, those who prefer "Shooters" spend the most each month ($50), "Real-time Strategy" and "Sports" games follow closely behind, added Pluchino.

Phoenix Marketing International also looked at the new Sony PSP. One- quarter of all Gamers plan to purchase a PSP unit in the near future. Interestingly, among those currently not "gaming", one-in-twenty claim they also are planning to purchase a Sony PSP. African-Americans and Asians are most likely to have already purchased a PSP, while Caucasians are both the least likely to have already purchased or plan to purchase a Sony PSP. Not surprising, with the slew of sports games available for the PSP, those gamers preferring "Sports" are most likely to have already purchased a PSP.

The results in this article are based on a market research study conducted by Phoenix Marketing International of more than 18,000 completed interviews. This robust sample yields a 95% confidence interval with an error margin of +/- 0.7%.

Black workers fared better than whites and Hispanics in weekly wages over past two years

(May 2, 2005) According to a new study, black workers fared better than whites or Hispanics in the ebb and flow of real median weekly earnings for the past two years. The finding is contained in a new report from the Pew Hispanic Center which analyzed Bureau of Labor Statistics and the  Census Bureau data.

In 2003 black workers wages rose 1.3 percent and white workers saw an increase of nine-tenths of one percent. Hispanic workers, however, had a decline of 2.2 percent in wages. Asian workers has an increase of 1.7 percent.

For 2004, blacks saw a decline in wages of one percent, while whites registered a decline of almost two percent. Hispanics' wages decreased by 2.6 percent, the only group of workers to have two consecutive years of declining wages. Asian workers posted an increase of 1.2 percent.

"Despite strong demand for immigrant workers, their growing supply and concentration in certain occupations suggests that the newest arrivals are competing with each other in the labor market to their own detriment," said the report's author, Rakesh Kochhar, a senior research associate at the Pew Hispanic Center.

The vast majority of new jobs for Hispanic workers were in relatively low-skill occupations calling for little other than a high school education. In contrast, non-Hispanic workers secured large increases in employment in higher-skill occupations requiring at least some college education.

"Hispanics and whites, the two largest groups of workers in the economy, are finding new jobs in such different occupations that they appear to be on separate paths in the labor market," said Kochhar, a veteran labor economist.

Click here to read entire Pew Hispanic Center report

March TMN/NiaOnline Consumer Confidence Survey shows blacks optimistic about jobs
Blacks outpacing whites on spending plans, job security

(April 19, 2005) African-Americans enter the spring months with growing confidence about their current employment status, according to the latest Target Market News/NiaOnline Black Consumer Confidence Survey.

In the online survey of 1052 people, conducted during the last week of March, 65 percent of blacks responding said that they feel secure about their current employment status for the next 90 days, compared to 47 percent of those responding to the previous Black Consumer Confidence Survey in February 2005. Fifty-six percent of whites said they feel secure in the latest survey, compared to 46 percent in the previous survey.

Nearly 14 percent of blacks in the latest survey said they are not sure they will be in their current job 90 days from now, as did seven percent of whites. Twenty-one percent of blacks said they felt neither secure nor insecure about their employment within the next 90 days, with 37 percent of whites answering they felt likewise.

How do you feel about your employment status
within the next 90 days?

Source: TMN/Niaonline    Key:      Black       White

However, that greater confidence in employment status did not seem to translate into more plans by blacks to buy big-ticket items within the next 90 days. Indeed, in the latest survey fewer blacks in March said they planned to make such purchases than those responding in February.

When asked if they plan to buy a big-ticket item such as a car or high-end electronics, 26 percent of blacks said yes, compared to 38 percent in the previous survey. The percentage of whites who said they would make such purchases stayed about even, at 21 percent and 22 percent, respectively. Fifty-four percent of black respondents and 55 percent of white respondents said no in the latest survey. Twenty percent of blacks said they were not sure, as did 24 percent of whites.

Do you plan to purchase a big-ticket item
in the next 90 days?

Source: TMN/Niaonline    Key:      Black       White

The latest Target Market News/NiaOnline Black Consumer Confidence Survey was conducted during the last week of March 2005 by Chicago-based Nia Enterprises, LLC through its NiaOnline Quick Response survey service ( All respondents to the survey were members of's Consumer Advisory Panel, which reaches over 125,000 household members. The results are based on responses from 552 black respondents and 500 white respondents.

VNU Marketing Information adds African-American household panel to portfolio

(March 30, 2005) VNU Marketing Information has announced two new services -- Target Track and Homescan African-American Consumer Panel -- that expand its portfolio of ethnic market information capabilities and give the consumer packaged goods industry new insights into these consumer segments.

Target Track, a joint offering of ACNielsen U.S. and Spectra, analyzes point-of-sale data from food, drug, and mass merchandise stores to quantify sales among Hispanic and African-American consumers, highlighting those categories and brands that skew toward each segment. In addition to performance tracking, the service also analyzes promotional effectiveness within each segment. Target Track offers reporting across the total U.S., as well as within 20 census-based retailer trade areas, 13 African-American markets, and 11 Hispanic markets.

"Target Track represents a real breakthrough in understanding the purchasing behavior of Hispanic and African-American consumers," said Alice Fawver, senior vice president of Marketing, ACNielsen U.S. "Used in conjunction with other VNU marketing information services, [it] will enable clients to more easily evaluate and refine their targeted marketing plans."

The ACNielsen Homescan African-American Consumer Panel provides integrated shopping and attitudinal insights into African-American consumers so that marketers can understand the unique product preferences of this fast growing consumer group. The panel consists of a nationally-representative sample of African-American households. Panelists record UPC purchases made at any retail outlet using patented in-home scanners and then download the information to ACNielsen for analysis.

The Homescan African-American Consumer Panel is a subset of the ACNielsen Homescan consumer panel. The national panel is being expanded from 91,500 households to 125,000 households by the end of this year, and will be further enhanced with country-of-origin information.

Census: Black women with college degrees earned more than white women grads

(March 27, 2005 - AP) Black and Asian women with bachelor's degrees earn slightly more than similarly educated white women, and white men with four-year degrees make more than anyone else.

A white woman with a bachelor's degree typically earned nearly $37,800 in 2003, compared with nearly $43,700 for a college-educated Asian woman and $41,100 for a college-educated black woman, according to data being released Monday by the Census Bureau. Hispanic women took home slightly less at $37,600 a year.

The bureau did not say why the differences exist. Economists and sociologists suggest possible factors: the tendency of minority women, especially blacks, to more often hold more than one job or work more than 40 hours a week, and the tendency of black professional women who take time off to have a child to return to the work force sooner than others.

Employers in some fields may give extra financial incentives to young black women, who graduate from college at higher rates than young black men, said Roderick Harrison, a researcher at the Joint Center for Political and Economic Studies, a think tank that studies minority issues.

"Given the relative scarcity, if you are a woman in the sciences - if you are a black woman - you would be a rare commodity," Harrison said.

Because study in the area is limited, it is hard to pinpoint specific reasons, said Barbara Gault, research director at the Washington-based Institute for Women's Policy Research.

"It could be the fields that educated black women are choosing," she said. "It also could be related to the important role that black women play in the total family income in African-American families.

Notions that black women are struggling financially as much other groups are should not be dismissed, Gault added.

For instance, nearly 39 percent of families headed by a single black woman were in poverty, compared with 21 percent of comparable white women, according to census estimates released last year.

A white male with a college diploma earns far more than any similarly educated man or woman - in excess of $66,000 a year, according to the Census Bureau. Among men with bachelor's degrees, Asians earned more than $52,000 a year, Hispanics earned $49,000 and blacks earned more than $45,000.

Workplace discrimination and the continuing difficulties of minorities to get into higher-paying management positions could help explain the disparities among men, experts say.

Demographics may offer an explanation: There are millions more college-educated white men in better paying jobs than there are black, Hispanic or Asian men.

Minorities also suffered more financially as a result of the 2001 recession and its aftermath, as has been the case with past economic downturns, said Jared Bernstein, chief economist with the Economic Policy Institute.

The figures come from the Census Bureau's annual look at educational achievement in America, culled from a survey in March 2004. Questions about income were asked for the previous calendar year.

Regardless of race or gender, a college graduate on average earned over $51,000, compared with $28,000 for someone with only a high school diploma or an equivalent degree. College-educated men typically made $63,000, compared with $33,000 for men with just a high school education.

Nielsen to adopt Task Force recommendations on research and workforce changes
Report addresses internal diversity issues

(March 24, 2005) After eight months of work, the Independent Task Force on Television Measurement delivered its final report to Nielsen Media Research. Among the areas where the task force recommended improvements were the size and composition of the audiences measured by Local People Meters, training for the field force, fault rates, the importance of increased diversity for Nielsen's own workforce, and better communications with the communities affected by ratings.

The 19-member Task Force was announced in April 2004, on a recommendation by Rep. Charles B. Rangel (D-NY), and was chaired by former Congresswoman Cardiss Collins of Illinois. It has been collecting information from Nielsen clients and community leaders, in order to make recommendations to Nielsen about how the ratings service can more accurately measure diverse television audiences.

"I am quite proud of the hard work that the Task Force members have devoted to this project," said Collins in a statement, "and I believe the report will be extremely helpful in [Nielsen's] efforts to ensure accurate measurement of persons of color."

Susan Whiting, CEO of Nielsen, said that work will begin immediately to implement the task force's findings. "Many of the recommendations by the task force will require support from our clients and agreement from the Media Rating Council which accredits audience measurement services such as Nielsen. We will work with our clients to obtain their support for these recommendations. We have an aggressive timetable for implementing these recommendations, and we need to move forward."

While the task force focused its attention on Nielsen's television research, the report also expressed concern about the lack of inclusiveness among persons of color within the greater television industry. Mrs. Collins' statement summarized the task force opinion that "... there is concern that the LPM controversy may distract attention from the larger issue of under- representation among persons of color in the television industry. It would be unfortunate if the industry's longstanding failure to adequately represent persons of color on television or in positions of authority were ignored because of the more highly publicized concerns over LPMs."

Among the specific recommendations made by the task force was the creation of an Independent Review Council to be comprised of "persons who represent diverse racial/ethnic communities with expertise in the media industry or research methods who can provide advice on ways to ensure accurate measurement of   people of color."

It was also suggested that the research firm create a new "Office of Domestic Expanding Markets" with three functions: creating a culture of diversity within Nielsen; implementing the task force recommendations, and working with the proposed independent review council.

The full report is available on

New Simmons study includes has demographic, psychographic and lifestyle profiles

(March 21, 2005) Reseach firm, Simmons has release of its two-year combined study. The Fall 2004 National Consumer Survey is designed for advertisers and marketers who want to connect with hard-to-reach consumer segments or understand low-incidence brands.

The Two-Year Combined Study merges Simmons two most recent full-year National Consumer Studies for even more in-depth information. With a sample size of over 50,000 English and Spanish-speaking respondents, the study provides deeper levels of information so advertisers can examine data at a more granular level for targeting the smallest niche segments of the mass population. The NCS includes demographic, psychographic, and lifestyle descriptions of all Americans, including the Hispanic/Latino market.

"By combining the studies we have doubled the sample size and increased the amount of information available," said Chris Wilson, president of Simmons. "The findings, which are available through a simple and easy-to-use "drill down" menu, allow marketers to understand and communicate more effectively with their customers across multiple touch points."

Click here for more information at Simmons' website

New study forecasts multi trillion dollar wealth transfer for African-American households

(March 15, 2005) A new study from researchers at the Boston College Center on Wealth and Philanthropy (CWP) estimates that between $1.1 trillion and $3.4 trillion of wealth will be transferred from estates to African-American households by 2055.

Their new report, "Wealth Transfer Estimates Among African-American Households," also includes statistical patterns and trends in income, wealth, and philanthropic giving among African-American households, as well as information on the capacity of African-American households to make charitable gifts and to leave charitable bequests during the 2001 - 2055 period. The research was facilitated by funding from the Twenty-First Century Foundation.

"By examining the major findings concerning recent trends in the financial resources and philanthropy of African-American households, the distribution of wealth and rates of growth in wealth among them, and the estimates of wealth transfer, we are attempting to paint part of an accurate financial picture of the African-American household, both today and in the future," said BC Center on Wealth and Philanthropy Director Paul Schervish.

In 2001 the net worth of African-American households reached $1 trillion (in 2003 dollars) after a decade of steady growth. In spite of this steady growth the African-American share of total household net worth fell because the wealth of other households grew more rapidly.

"We did find, however, that the growth in wealth among younger African-Americans who grew up after civil rights legislation was in effect identical to that for Caucasians of the same age and this is a hopeful sign for African-American wealth in the future," said CWP Associate Director John Havens, who directed the study.

The new report is an outgrowth of the nationally-noted study "Millionaires and the Millennium" issued by the Boston College researchers in 1999, which reported that $41 trillion ($46.3 trillion in 2003 dollars) would be transferred via estates in the U.S. over the next 55 years. Four times higher than the previous highest estimate of wealth transfer, the $41 trillion figure -- which was the lowest of three scenarios presented by CWP and of which $6 trillion ($7 trillion in 2003 dollars) is expected to go to charity ?- represents the largest intergenerational transfer of wealth in history.

The researchers note that while the estimates of wealth transfer from African-American households are large, they account for only a fraction of the $46.3 to $153.7 trillion (2003 dollars) of CWP's 1999 estimate of total wealth transfer for the nation.

The full report is available for download at

Nielsen announces big changes to address critics' concerns on research accuracy
(Feb. 21, 2005) In an eight-page letter addressed to clients, Nielsen Media Research CEO, Susan Whiting outlined a number of changes and developments at the company that she said will address criticism about the accuracy of data and shortcomings of methodologies.
 "We listen closely to what clients are telling us," said Whiting in the letter. "I want you to know that we've heard our clients loud and clear when they tell us they want more from Nielsen."
 Among the proposed changes is the creation of a $2.5 million research development fund that will be controlled by a yet-to-formed group representing Nielsen clients. The focus of the spending will be on looking at research methodology improvements.
 Whiting's letter also addresses the recent criticism leveled against Nielsen by the Media Ratings Council, which called for Congressional oversight of reforms.

"We have read with interest the recent letter from the MRC to Senator Burns and do not disagree with any of its main points," said Whiting. "However, the fact that this letter was even sent, and the questions that it raised in the broader television community, indicates that there is a lack of clarity about our commitment to the MRC process. Therefore, we are restating our continued commitment to the MRC process and will work with the MRC to create guidelines that further clarify our relationship with them within the scope of the legislation that created the MRC."

Also in the letter is a response to charges that ethnic audiences are under-represented in the current samples of diaries and Local People Meter users. Whiting said that effective with the May 2005 survey, the over-sampling index for African-American and Hispanic households in ethnic treatment markets will be increased from 70% to 90%.
Click here to read entire letter from Nielsen's Susan Whiting


Return to Homepage



The sixth annual event examining the latest trends, findings and practices in marketing to African-American consumers

Presentations from:

America Online
Arbitron Inc.
Carol H. Williams Advertising
E. Morris Communications
Ethnic Print Media Group
Hunter-Miller Group
Images USA
Nia Online
NSights Worldwide LLC
On Wheels Inc.
R.J. Dale Advertising & P.R.
Target Market News
U.S. Census Bureau

...and more!

Click here for descriptions of sessions and to order the workbook

 Ideas that solve problems
The 2004 Black Consumer Research and Advertising Summit Workbook

Did you miss the 2004 Black Consumer Research and Advertising Summit? Now you can own the hardcopy of all the presentations made at one of the industry's most anticipated annual events!

You'll get over 300 pages of the latest statistics, trends and analysis on the African American consumer market.

Presenters at this year's Summit:

Amalgamated Publishers, Inc.
American Urban Radio
Allen and Partners
Arbitron Inc.
E. Morris Communications
Hunter-Miller Group
Insights Marketing Group
Johnson Publishing Co.
M. Davis & Co.
Nielsen Media Research
NSights Worldwide
R.J. Dale Advertising
Starcom Worldwide
Target Market News
UniWorld Group
U.S. Dept. of Commerce
Wimbley Group

Click here to read the topics covered

Your research library is not complete and up-to-date without this invaluable reference on the African-American market.

Click here to order your copy today!


 11th Annual Edition Available Now

New 'Buying Power' report reveals surge by black households for consumer electronics

Despite tighter economic times, African-American households are significantly increasing their expenditures on consumer electronics for the home, according to the newest edition of The Buying Power of Black America report. In many categories such as video games, televisions, CD players, cable TV service and sound equipment, black households are spending more on average than their white counterparts.

According to the 103-page report, black households had $656 billion in earned income in 2003, an increase of 3.9% over the $631 earned in 2002.

Read more and see the latest expenditure figures for black consumers