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data on African American consumers
Black Buying Power:
$656 Billion (2003)
Black U.S. Population:
Top Five Black Cities
- New York
Top Five Black Metros:
- New York-New Jersey
- Los Angeles
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
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Click here to go to African-American Census Bureau
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THE LATEST ON
CONSUMER PRODUCTS AND SERVICES
uses real customer stories in multi-media campaign from
8, 2005) The stars of a first-of-its-kind integrated, multi-media
multicultural grassroots marketing campaign are real people who are
pursuing their entrepreneurial and community service passions with the
help of Verizon broadband services.
developed the campaign - "Realize" - with advertising/communications
partner, Chicago-based Burrell, one of the nation's leading
African-American owned full service communications agencies. Using a
combination of traditional and non-traditional media, Verizon speaks
directly to people in some of the very Washington, D.C. and Philadelphia
area neighborhoods where the dreams of customers featured in its campaign
Branded communications go to market beginning, Sept. 12 and include
posters, mobile billboards, wraps for magazines given to hair salon
patrons, advertorials in African American newspapers, targeted radio, bus
shelters and a hand-painted mural.
"'Realize' is about real people - the guy next door or the mom of your
child's classmate - people from actual neighborhoods where the advertising
appears, friends and neighbors who are starting their own businesses or
strengthening their communities with the help of Verizon's broadband
services," said Jerri DeVard, Verizon's senior vice president, brand
management and marketing communications. "This grassroots effort is the
result of marketing insights that reveal large percentages of working
African-Americans and other minorities in the country are investing -
often as a 'side business' -- in their entrepreneurial dreams."
The first four weeks of the campaign, which began Aug. 15, included
unbranded positive messages on mobile billboards, posters in convenience
store windows and magazine wrappers. The messages were powerful words and
images, such as "Realize Opportunity" with a photograph of a stack of
books and "Realize Potential" along with a pair of boxing gloves. The
second phase of the Realize campaign ties the unbranded messages to the
brand and product -- Verizon Online DSL -- and connects each of the
messages to a customer.
Simultaneously, Verizon's African American employee resource group,
Consortium of Information and Telecommunications Executives, will work
with Multicultural Marketing to show consumers first-hand how they can use
broadband to pursue their passions. The hands-on experiences will take
place on a special Realize mobile unit, which will travel to
company-sponsored community events and other venues in the Philadelphia
and Washington, D.C. areas. In addition, at undisclosed locations and
times, selected customers will perform demonstrations before live
audiences and via web cam to show how, with the help of Verizon broadband
services, they are pursuing their passions and dreams.
Serena Williams to create cosmetics
collection for Estee Lauder’s Flirt line
31, 2005)Tennis superstar Serena Williams has teamed up with Estee Lauder
Companies to be the 2006 guest creator for its Flirt! cosmetics line.
William's first collection will debut in February 2006 at Kohl's
Department Stores nationwide and online at kohls.com.
"Flirt! is a brand driven by pop culture," stated Jane Hudis, President,
Flirt! cosmetics. "Serena is the perfect personality to continue the buzz
with a celebrity collection. She is fearless on the court, dynamic and
energetic, yet when she steps on the red carpet she is sexy, flirtatious
and completely alluring."
Flirt!, the makeup line with more then 250 colors pushes the boundaries to
be a little more daring with makeup. Flirt! enlists the creative talents
of favorite personalities from pop culture to express their unique sense
of style and creativity in cosmetics. The Guest Creator may work on a new
color, a new product, a new accessory or an entire collection.
"I am a complete beauty junkie and being in the fashion business, I stay
ahead of the trends," stated Williams. "Now I am able to create makeup
that works with what is in style. Creating cosmetics allows me to be
glamorous and adventurous plus show off my flirtatious side, a fun
contrast to my life on the court."
gives executives clarity and insights on African-American consumers
31, 2005) Two of the nation's foremost African-American marketers have
joined forces to author a landmark book that contains power strategies
designed to help companies capture more of the $700 billion dollar buying
power from the African-American consumer.
Written by Pepper Miller and Herb Kemp (above) and titled, What's Black
About It? Insights to Increase Your Share of the Changing African-American
Market, this pioneering reference is being hailed as a long-awaited
tool and a standout in the universe of marketing references.
Gleaned from their decades of market research and observations, What's
Black About It? offers in-depth, qualitative insights and quantitative
information on Black culture. It also gives a unique glimpse into the
breadth and depth of the Black experience.
The book debunks myths and provides rare clarity into the mindsets,
aspirations and subtle differences. Importantly, if understood,
appreciated and applied, the information can motivate marketers to create
inspired and intelligent advertising and marketing campaigns that will
resonate with the customer and propel sales.
Among the topics and perspectives covered by the authors are:
- The economic value of marketing to African-Americans
- The fundamental cultural differences between African-American and
general market consumers
- Why mainstream communications may "miss the mark" with black consumers
- The reason why savvy marketers should reconsider dismissing of reducing
marketing programs targeting African-Americans
The importance of corporate infrastructure that support black target
Miller, "Many advertising agencies and corporate marketers are too often
guilty of viewing Black life through media images that hype, distort,
exaggerate and 'caricaturize' the black experience."
Kemp adds, "Most marketers don't realize that the African-American
consumer market is projected to exceed $1 trillion by 2010 and is one of
the largest, highly-visible and most-influential segments; yet, seemingly,
it is also the most misunderstood and undervalued by today's corporate
According to William Mitchell, Director of Customer Research for American
Airlines, What's Black About It? is a "first-rate book that will,
no doubt, alter the way Corporate America views and markets to
What's Black About It? lists for $39.95. For a limited time, the
book can be purchased for $29.95 online at
www.paramountbooks.com or by
contacting Paramount Market Publishing, Inc., at 1-888-787-8100.
teams with Wal-Mart on launch of new branded DVD entertainment line
30, 2005) BET and Wal-Mart are forming a marketing alliance to meet the
demand for urban-oriented music and movie offerings with BET content and
branding. BET President and CEO Debra L. Lee and Wal-Mart Vice President
of Merchandising David Porter made the joint announcement today at BET
headquarters in Washington and Wal-Mart's global headquarters in
Under the alliance, BET will provide Wal-Mart with DVDs containing
exclusive BET programming and other content related to featured
urban-oriented music and movie releases. These DVDs will be packaged with
the featured releases and sold as "BET Official" branded two-packs in
BET-branded retail sections and other merchandising displays throughout
thousands of Wal- Mart and SAM'S CLUB locations.
First to hit Wal-Mart stores under the new BET Official brand will be a
companion DVD featuring multi-talented, Grammy Award-winning
rapper/producer Kanye West. The DVD will be paired with West's
highly-anticipated new CD project, "Late Registration," in a special
CD/DVD two-pack available exclusively at SAM'S CLUB locations and Wal-Mart
"This marketing and promotion alliance with Wal-Mart pairs BET's powerful
brand and stellar content with trend-setting, urban-oriented music and
movies to enhance Wal-Mart's appeal in urban entertainment product," said
Lee. "Over the years, we've sought creative ways to deliver more BET
programming content through retail channels. And what better way than
combining the ultimate retailer with the greatest Black consumer brand on
"We're excited to be able to bring our customers some of the most popular
music and movie titles in this category and our relationship with BET
allows us to offer exclusive releases with award-winning artists," said
Wal-Mart's Porter. "This is a relationship that will bring cutting-edge
entertainment for customers of all ages."
The "BET Official Presents Kanye West" DVD contains BET-produced
programming along with never-before-seen footage of the superstar rapper,
producer and urban icon. Included on the DVD is a dynamic mix of content
featuring a BET behind-the-scenes "docu-feature" with West on the set of
his music video, “Diamonds From Sierra Leone;” West's interview and
performance on 106 & PARK: BET'S TOP 10 LIVE, and a series of West's
popular music videos including “Diamonds From Sierra Leone,” “Through the
Wire,” “The New Workout Plan,” and a previously unreleased version of the
multi-platinum “Jesus Walks.” The CD/DVD package will retail for $13.88,
and will be promoted through specially-designed BET-branded merchandising
displays, print and electronic advertising, in-store promotions and other
Brewers set baseball attendance record using black and Hispanic
29, 2005) The Milwaukee Brewers are on pace to have their best season at
the gate and in revenue since Miller Park's inaugural season in 2001.
With fan excitement over new ownership, improved play on the field that
has brought the team to near a .500 record, and an aggressive advertising
campaign, the team is averaging 28,140 per game through the first 57 home
games. That is a 9.5 percent increase over the per-game average of 25,688
through 57 games during the 2004 season.
[One] reason for the increased attendance has been the team's effort to
market to area Hispanics and African-Americans, Schlesinger said. In
April, the team hired Abrazo Multicultural Marketing and Communications,
Milwaukee, to enhance marketing efforts to the Hispanic community. The
team has opened five ticket branches in Latino neighborhoods, including
one at the United Community Center, along with increasing advertising in
Spanish newspapers and other publications.
The team followed that by hiring Malik Communications Inc., Milwaukee, to
coordinate the Brewers' direct marketing and ticket programs geared to the
"More fans are coming to Miller Park and we are
starting to see the fruits of our efforts to attract diverse groups,"
Schlesinger said. "This is not a one-year program, but the groundwork has
been set for continued growth in attendance from the African-American and
here to read entire story
Allianz Life Insurance names
Circulation Experti for black consumer marketing
26, 2005) Circulation Expertí, Ltd., a multicultural agency specializing
in providing public relations, advertising and marketing services,
recently announced that it was retained by Allianz Life Insurance Company
of North America and Allianz Life Insurance Company of New York to promote
the company’s products and services to the African-American market.
Allianz Life is a leading provider of fixed and variable annuities and
life policies, as well as long term care products throughout the U.S.
Earlier this year, the company initiated a campaign to generate greater
awareness of the company and its products among African-American, Asian
and Hispanic consumers. In addition, the company hopes to recruit a more
diverse distribution network, and provide greater support to existing
agents and registered representatives who serve multicultural markets.
Expertí will support these efforts with event marketing, media relations,
sponsorship participation and advertising services designed to assist
Allianz Life in increasing brand awareness and market share within
“Allianz Life recognizes that African-American consumers have the same
financial needs as the general population and that, with a buying power in
excess of $723 billion, this customer base presents a business opportunity
that, for the well-positioned financial services company, is capable of
providing significant rewards,” said W. Garrison Jackson, president and
CEO, Circulation Expertí (above). “Our agency looks forward to helping
Allianz Life enhance its presence and opportunities to do business in
“Our goal is to become the leading financial services company for emerging
markets,” explained Baron Carr, vice president of multicultural marketing,
Allianz Life. “We are committed to providing multicultural sales and
marketing tools, and building relationships with institutions in these
Anheuser-Busch to create
Inside Anheuser-Busch's changes in
African-American, Hispanic marketing
(August 21, 2005) Anheuser-Busch has
created two vice presidents' slots to lead the brewer's multicultural
Johnny Furr Jr., vp-sales development and community affairs, will oversee
African-American marketing efforts, and Henry Dominguez, vp-government
affairs West Region, is the new vp-Hispanic marketing.
The appointments follow promotion of Bob Lachky to the newly created post
of evp-global industry development, and the moving of new product
development vet Marlene Coulis to succeed him as the new vp-brand
management and director of global creative. Other moves mentioned in an
A-B memo include moving Keith Levy, vp-retail, and John Johnson, vp-regional
sales operations, to new sales posts. Jim Schumaker, vp-creative
development, and Dave English, vp-premium brands were appointed to
strategic development roles reporting to Coulis.
The changes among the executive ranks of Anheuser-Busch are perceived by
the brewer's distribution network more as tweaking the wisdom already in
house rather than a management shakeup. The newly promoted are, after all,
A-B quietly alerted wholesalers about the new executive appointments
through a company memo last week and used a Monday press conference to
announce the launch of Tilt, a new malt beverage with caffeine, guarana
and ginseng. The company did not return calls for comment.
The No. 1 brewer has had brand managers for target audiences before, but
creating two vice president slots marks the departure from marketing
strategy, which held that Budweiser, Bud Light and the Clydesdales have
such broad appeal that by reaching everyone, A-B can appeal to specific
consumer groups. That approach had frustrated African-American company
managers who confided to multicultural ad agency sources that brewing
executives failed to see that there is more to marketing to black
consumers than just community relations.
Both African-American and Hispanic demographics are among the fastest
growing consumer segments with 57% of African-Americans younger than 35
and the overall black population expected to increase 27% by 2020. Latinos
of legal drinking age comprise a sizeable segment of Hispanic
consumers—the median age is 25.8 years old compared with 35.5 for the U.S
population—and that ethnic group is projected to grow 27% by 2010, per the
University of Georgia's Selig Center.
"Having vice presidents in the company cover these specific initiatives is
a great step in the right direction but it's really not a stride, and I
think there is a lot of work they are going to have to do," said Bob
McNeil Jr., founder and president of Images USA, an independent Atlanta
shop whose roster includes McDonalds, Pepsi, Wachovia, Bermuda Ministry of
Tourism, Home Depot and Cox Communications.
A-B has hit marketing homeruns by injecting the “Wassup” guys into popular
culture and utilizing the broad appeal of Cedric the Entertainer in the
current TV spots for Bud Light and designated-driver initiatives. But
McNeil notes that competitors are doing far more to break through into
both communities with much less.
For example, Coors has had multicultural outreaches crafted by Carol H.
Williams Advertising, New York, and Bromley Communications, San Antonio.
Miller has been involved in the Thurgood Marshall Foundation, and features
Mexican comedian Adal Ramones in spots from Bravo, New York.
And Heineken may be the best multicultural marketer in the beer category
with grassroots programs such as the NYC Latino Tour program of summer
concerts, and scholarships to support budding urban talent through the
Heineken Music Initiative.
"Adding these two people to their arsenal is good, and I'm sure they're
going to bring good ideas, but they'll have to find a way to have a
breakthrough on delivery to each one of the targets,' said Images' McNeil.
"They'll have to think about mature marketing in an innovative way because
their competitors are extremely hungry."
A-B is not starting from scratch in the multicultural marketing game
because it does have an infrastructure for gleaning insights about their
targets. For instance, the brewer teamed with Cadbury Schweppes' Clamato
to cross-promote in grocery stores purchases of Bud and the tomato
cocktail for mixing michiladas, a popular beverage among Mexican
Americans. The brewer is positioning Michelob among Asian Americans as a
cooking and beverage ingredient through efforts like "The Kitchen Gods"—a
calendar featuring Asian-America's best chefs—and backing events like the
Asian Pacific Filmmakers' reception at the Sundance Film Festival.
Other efforts include teaming Latin music acts with 3-on-3 soccer
tournaments and the Esta Noche Toca concert series.
On the African-American front, A-B has sponsored the Budweiser Essence
Music Festival and snagged urban and hip-hop artists to host private
parties in various markets under the Bud Light Lounge program.
A-B's roster of Hispanic agencies includes del Rivero Messianu DDB, Coral
Gables, Fla.; Dieste Harmel & Partners, Dallas; and LatinWorks Marketing,
Austin. Spike DDB, New York, which handled Super Bowl creative for Pepsi,
also has handled A-B duties.
While in his previous post, Lachky traveled to China and the UK and
oversaw creation of the British version of "Real Men of Genius” which
poked fun at American stereotypes. Now as the evp-global industry
development for the world's largest brewer, he is charged enhancing the
industry's image here and abroad.
"All I know is that whatever his role, it will be prominent," said an
backs anti-smoking effort targeting blacks through murals
16, 2005) GlaxoSmithKline (GSK) Consumer Healthcare has joined together
with the Madison Square Boys & Girls Club to celebrate and encourage
smoke-free lives with MyCityMyArt, an educational program designed to
reach out to the African-American population about the dangers of smoking.
The program -- which includes an art competition, art lessons for children
and a virtual art gallery to display their work -- will kickoff in five
major U.S. cities this week.
As part of
the program, Slang, a professional commercial artist, helped lead an art
class with children from Madison Square Boys & Girls Club to enlist them
to create their own creative quit-smoking themed art. The
results will become part of a nationwide competition against four other
artists in Atlanta, Chicago, Los Angeles and Philadelphia.
The murals from the five cities will be posted online at
the public to view and vote for the best mural. The winning artist will be
announced in October 2005 and will unveil his design at a prominent
location in his home city. The same web site features galleries of the
children's art and includes options to send your favorite mural designs to
friends and family.
murals have previously been used by the tobacco industry to market their
products, so we think it's about time we used this vehicle to help the
community," said GSK Consumer Healthcare's Vice-President, Smoking
Control, Bill Slivka. "MyCityMyArt is part of our commitment to helping
people tap into their inner strength. For many quitters, quitting is a
process measured by the little things that help end their relationship
with cigarettes. One of these murals or an email with a child's design may
inspire a smoker to think about quitting."
Restructuring at Ford puts
Darryl Hazel at head of marketing for company
10, 2005) Under a recently announced restructuring plan at Ford Motor Co.,
all marketing activities for Ford corporate, the Ford division and the
Lincoln division will overseen by Darryl B. Hazel (left) in his new position
as vice president of marketing. Hazel was already one of the auto industry’s
highest ranking executives in his previous post as vice president of Ford
Motor Co. and president of the Ford division.
The consolidation of the Ford and Lincoln-Mercury
marketing divisions will also include a reduction of two-thirds of the
number of field offices that support the 4,445 Ford and Lincoln Mercury
dealerships nationwide. The restructuring is an effort to lower operating
costs and streamline advertising, inventory management, customer service and
“We’re going to reach customers in smarter, more focused ways than ever
before while being extremely efficient with resources,” says Steve Lyons,
Ford group vice president, North America Marketing, Sales and Service. “This
new organization will help us develop a single-minded concentration on
reaching our customers with the strongest product lineup in our history.”
“Today's marketplace is fragmented into ever smaller niche groups than in
the past,” says Hazel. “Our new Marketing organization will focus on
reaching individual customers with increasing relevance and excitement.”
Hazel joined Ford Motor Company in 1972 as an analyst in Lincoln Mercury's
New York District Sales Office. During his six years in New York, he served
in various capacities, including marketing manager, business management
manager and field manager. He also had managerial assignments in Washington,
D.C., Philadelphia, Cleveland and Boston.
From August 2002 to April 2005, Hazel was president, Lincoln Mercury
Division. Prior to Lincoln Mercury, he was president of Ford Customer
Anheuser-Busch to create new African-American and Hispanic marketing
By Jim Arndorfer
(Augnust 8, 2005)
Anheuser-Busch is creating new VP positions to
oversee Hispanic and African-American marketing, reflecting the brewer’s
increased focus on ethnic markets as it struggles to reverse sales and
market share declines.
Henry Dominguez, a longtime Anheuser-Busch executive who has held sales
and marketing positions in the past, will return from California, where he
is currently vice president for government affairs for the western region
to take the top Hispanic job.
Mr. Dominguez’s appointment is expected to be announced this week, along
with that of Johnny Furr Jr. as vice president for African-American
marketing, according to several executives familiar with the matter. Mr.
Furr is vice president of sales development and community affairs, a job
in which he is already involved with consumer awareness, education and
marketing, and sales initiatives to African-American consumers.
The creation of a Hispanic marketing department headed by a vice president
includes the recent promotion of Juan Torres to the post of director of
Latino marketing. Mr. Torres, who is from Colombia, was previously
Hispanic brand manager for Budweiser. Rudy Beltran, Hispanic brand manager
for Bud Light, may also take on a somewhat different role, said executives
familiar with the changes.
Beer marketing is a highly competitive category in the Hispanic market.
Anheuser-Busch was the second-largest beer marketer, and ranked No. 36
overall, among Hispanic advertisers in 2004, spending $20 million. Only
SABMiller ranked higher, at No. 28, with ad spending of $24 million.
Click here to read entire story
to get an expanded role in Jeep's marketing plans
Detroit Free Press
28, 2005) At a time when the popularity of SUVs is waning, the new Jeep
Commander -- which the Chrysler Group will launch today at the Jefferson
North Assembly Plant in Detroit -- will be rolled out with an urban,
hip-hop marketing campaign.
Missy (Misdemeanor) Elliott is featuring the vehicle in her new video,
"Lose Control," and a Chrysler official confirmed that the automaker is in
negotiations to expand her promotion of the SUV in an effort to paint a
street-smart attitude for the vehicle.
Chrysler is working with Elliott to create 30 seconds of unique music that
is going to be featured in the first launch spot for the Commander, which
is to hit dealerships in September, and footage of her is expected to be
integrated in the advertisement, according to a source familiar with the
talks. The person wished to remain anonymous to avoid jeopardizing the
"We're in discussions for some future uses," Julie Roehm, director of
marketing communications for Chrysler, Dodge and Jeep, confirmed.
Although she would not elaborate on the relationship, Roehm noted that it
won't be in the style of Chrysler's coolly-received association with
Celine Dion, which featured a lot of advertisements that focused more on
the svelte diva than the company's vehicles.
Roehm said celebrity affiliations have to feel unobtrusive and natural.
Looser associations with hip-hop stars such as Snoop Dogg and 50 Cent have
helped propel the image of vehicles such as the Chrysler 300 and
competitors like the Cadillac Escalade. Some other rappers are hyping the
new Dodge Charger.
John Scott, general manager of Snethkamp Chrysler-Jeep in Redford, said
it's great to have the company's new products featured in any new videos,
regardless of who the artist is, to get the attention of younger buyers.
But Elliott is, arguably, the biggest hip-hop star to lend her name to a
Chrysler product, and the Jeep brand wants to maximize the promotional
opportunity -- especially the potential to tap into the growing minority
market, which has been one of the few demographics bolstering SUV sales.
Although Elliott's work is filled with profanity and sex, she is mostly
well regarded by critics and popular with consumers. She has won three
Grammy Awards for performances of hits such as "Work It," "Itchin' " and
"Get Ur Freak On."
Elliott also has produced and written a variety of hits for other artists,
such as the revised "Lady Marmalade," which was performed by Christina
Aguilera, Pink, Lil' Kim and Mya. Not so long ago, she also was featured
in a Gap commercial with Madonna.
As it happens, Elliott also is a car aficionado.
Myles Kovacs, president and cofounder of Dub magazine, which will hold an
auto-customizing show Aug. 7 in Detroit and the man who customized the
Commander for Elliott's video, said Elliott has been featured on its cover
"Her car collection is better than a lot of guys'," he said. "Missy is one
of the icons for female rappers in the world. She's a huge trend-setter
and influencer in the marketplace."
So the video featuring the new Jeep Commander is getting a lot of exposure
with a younger generation of consumers, to whom marketers nationwide are
trying to sell virtually everything, from magazines to vehicles. And
Elliott has the credibility to peddle it.
Jeep could use the extra attention.
Sales of large SUVs, which are highly profitable for their manufacturers,
are suffering overall -- largely a consequence of higher gas prices. Sales
of the largest SUVs were down 12.4% for the first six months of the year,
compared with the same period a year ago, according to Autodata Corp. of
Woodcliff Lake, N.J.
So the Commander, the first Jeep to have three rows of seats, will join
that less-popular crowd of hulking vehicles. Boosting the Commander's
image with younger buyers -- especially African Americans and Hispanics --
could prove critical to overcoming the obstacle faced by the largest SUVs.
The average age of a Jeep buyer is 44 years old, and about 38.5% of the
buyers are women, according to the Power Information Network.
But the percentage of African American and Hispanic buyers of the Jeep
Grand Cherokee, the largest Jeep currently on the market, is only 7.5% and
6.9% respectively, according to Art Spinella, president of CNW Marketing
Research in Bandon, Ore. He said that the appeal of the vehicle to
minorities may be more critical to improve because CNW research shows that
minorities are bolstering sales of several key large SUVs.
African Americans and Hispanics made up just about 11% and 12%,
respectively, of new vehicle buyers this year. But African Americans and
Hispanics bought 21% and 14% of the Cadillac Escalades this year.
"Obviously, what they're trying to do is increase their overall
African-American penetration," Spinella said of the latest Jeep marketing
its backing of 'Voice of Color' and ABFF film programs
13, 2005) Wal-Mart Stores has announced that this fall it will launch
Voices of Color, a unique, multi-dimensional program that aims to give
'voice' to a broader and more positive depiction of African-American
images, via wide range, quality programming for the whole family.
As a prelude to the Voices of Color program, the retailer has also
announced that it is sponsoring the 2005 American Black Film Festival,
July 13th through July 17th in Miami, Florida. The ABFF is expected to
draw more than 2,500 guests who will enjoy a showcase of the best in
independent black cinema.
Wal-Mart recently partnered with Time Warner's Global Marketing group to
create an advertising-supported film series called The Voices of Color --
a compilation of important films that celebrate African Americans
including "The Color Purple." This and other titles will be available for
purchase in DVD and VHS formats from walmart.com and at select Wal-Mart
As part of the program, Wal-Mart will sponsor the broadcast of monthly
movie specials featuring significant black films on Time Warner-owned
television networks including TNT and TBS. These movie specials will also
be promoted in Time Inc.'s “Essence” magazine and through an exclusive
online partnership with AOL Black Voices, which will develop original
content features as an enhancement to the series. The series, which will
include films ranging from timeless classics to contemporary favorites, is
designed to highlight the range and depth of the African-American
"Wal-Mart is proud to support cinema that highlights the diversity and
depth of the African-American experience," said Troy Steiner, senior media
director, Wal-Mart Stores, Inc. "For many years, the roles African
Americans could play in mainstream films were very limited and the ABFF is
in part responsible for helping the film industry, and the world, see
African Americans in a different, more positive light."
"We are supporting African-American filmmaking because it makes good
business sense," said Steiner. "We would like to see these wonderful films
gain a wider audience, so we are making it possible for our customers to
enjoy them both on network television and by making them part of their
family film libraries. We certainly hope the Voices of Color film series
and the other program components serve as an invitation to African
Americans to consider Wal-Mart as their first choice when looking for
quality movies that tell their stories."
Pontiac/Oprah giveaway takes highest honor at Cannes Ad Fest
27, 2005) The Pontiac Division of General Motors Corporation won a Cannes
Gold Media Lion award last week in France at the Cannes Lions
International Advertising Festival for its unprecedented giveaway of 276
G6s to every audience member on the Oprah Winfrey Show "Wildest Dreams"
season opener in September 2004.
The campaign was created by the Vigilante agency and its senior vice
president, Andrea Fant-Hobbs (above). Pontiac was the only United States
entry to win a Media Lion. The annual Cannes event recognizes the very
best of international advertising, creativity and marketing communications
executions from entries representing 75 countries.
"With 44 different models in the mid-size car
segment, this program gave us an extraordinary opportunity to establish an
identity in a high risk, high reward manner to help introduce an all-new
Pontiac with an all-new name," said Mark-Hans Richer, Pontiac marketing
director. "It provided a rare chance to fully integrate advertising,
product placement, promotion and public relations activities into a single
event that created instant, high impact buzz across America."
The Oprah Winfrey Show giveaway also sparked huge
web traffic increases and consumer interest, global media coverage, and
even became a pop culture phenomenon that fueled late night television
discussions and political cartoons. As a result, Oprah Winfrey and Pontiac
G6 became top search items on Yahoo and Google and within two weeks,
Pontiac achieved 87 percent adult G6 awareness, the highest Google.com
click-thru rate ever at 17 percent and a 600 percent increase in traffic
plans black tourism ad
campaign around opening of museum
(June 13, 2005) City tourism officials are using this month's scheduled
opening of a museum spotlighting black history and culture to push
Baltimore as a destination of choice for African-American tourists.
With an eye on the planned opening June 25 of the Reginald F. Lewis Museum
of Maryland African American History and Culture, tourism officials
increased their spending on advertising in predominantly black media by
more than 66 percent over last year, to $224,900 from $134,800, said Nancy
Hinds, spokeswoman for the Baltimore Area Convention and Visitors
Association. Most of the money, $176,400, will be spent on radio
In addition, BACVA set aside $30,000 for a "familiarization tour"
centering on the museum's opening weekend. The group expects to bring in
20 to 30 meeting planners, group-tour operators and travel media
representatives from throughout the country. "The opening provides an
opportunity to really take advantage and really position Baltimore well in
this market," Hinds said.
Radio time has been purchased on three stations in Washington and two in
Philadelphia. Print ads have appeared in The Philadelphia Tribune and
Washington editions of The Afro American. Three Web sites - BET.com,
SoulOfAmerica.com and AOL.com - also will feature ads geared toward the
The newspaper ads, featuring pictures of Harriet Tubman and Frederick
Douglass, promote the museum opening and the annual African-American
Heritage Festival, set for that same weekend at Oriole Park at Camden
Yards. Exhorting the city's black heritage, the ads promise "your trip can
also be a journey of inspiration and pride."
Minority travel represents a $9 billion-a-year market nationwide, Hinds
said. Plans are to promote the Lewis Museum, which will be the second
largest African-American history museum in the country (after Detroit's
Museum of African American History), alongside such established city
attractions as the Great Blacks in Wax Museum and the many sites connected
"We know the opening of this museum will have an impact on Baltimore,"
Click here to read entire Baltimore Sun story
McDonald's targets black
women with digital campaign from Burrell and ImagineThat
Click Z Network
(June 6, 2005) McDonald's is promoting its new Fruit & Walnut Salad by
enticing African-American women to engage with rich media ad units.
The six-week campaign was designed by digital marketing agency ImagineThat
in conjunction with McDonald's multicultural marketing agency, Burrell, a
unit of Publicis. Spend wasn't disclosed.
"What we realized when we were doing the research was that women were
active gamers," said Derek Bonney, senior VP of ImagineThat. "Each one of
those units was built with a game inside of it. We realized women weren't
into the shoot-'em-up, kill-'em-type games. They were more into the mind
teasers that they could relax and share with friends."
The effort employs United Virtualities' Ooqa-Ooqa branded-browser
takeover, as well as expandable ads and interstitial units from Eyeblaster.
Standard Flash banners will also appear as part of the campaign. The media
buy includes BET.com, BlackPlanet.com, AOL BlackVoices, and Vibe Online.
The Ooqa-Ooqa ad, which will run exclusively on BET.com, is triggered
whenever an Internet Explorer user enters a content category ImagineThat
found to be popular with women -- books, health, or beauty. When the
browser launches, its usual navigation is replaced by a McDonald's themed
navigation, which includes a picture of the Fruit & Walnut Salad and a
button that says "play game." The themed browser remains until either the
user turns it off or leaves the channel.
"The goal was to find a unique way to bring the brand in front of the
users," said Bonney. "To date, we're very happy with the results as far as
people keeping it active in their browsers and continuing to surf through
Both the expandable creative and the interstitial unit feature games as
well. The expandable ad begins as a 160 x 600 unit that asks viewers "What
is Fruit Buzz?" and invites them to play a word scramble game to discover
the answer. Once the user comes up with the answer, a picture and
description of the salad appear. The creative also features a drawing of
an African-American woman.
The interstitial, or "commercial break" format, features a game that lets
the viewer manipulate a bowl with her mouse and catch pieces of fruit as
they fall from the top of the ad unit.
"With this campaign in particular we weren't particularly interested in
driving traffic to the landing page," said Bonney. "It was more about
generating awareness and brand exposure."
The online campaign is running in conjunction with TV and print creative
targeted to the same African-American audience.
Anderson Communications launches Black
Health NOW! with radio broadcasts
3, 2005) Anderson
Communications, creator of the Health Information Network, has launched
Black Health NOW! as a part of the second phase of its national health
communications initiative. Launched in June 2004, The Health Information
Network is a multi-faceted, multi-media program designed to promote
awareness and effect positive change in the health of the African American
community. “We want to make a difference in the health status of African
Americans by providing them with vital information that will help them be
more informed consumers and reduce the incidences of diseases in our
community,” said Al Anderson (above), chairman and founder of Anderson
Black Health NOW! includes a daily one-minute radio feature that is
currently being carried on 90+ radio stations across the country. Also
included in the program are weekly columns on health that will be seen in
selected black newspapers and magazines. The company has also launched a
website to support the program, www.blackhealthnow.com. Future plans call
for a special outreach to children, television, healthy living events and
“Many health outreach programs to the black community have failed to reach
and positively impact our citizens because they have depended on public
service announcements as the mechanism to get the message out to African
Americans,” said Anderson. “Our program, due to the great cooperation we
have received from black radio stations and black newspapers across the
country, is being carried every day at times when blacks are listening to
the radio and printed in newspapers distributed in our neighborhoods.”
Alexis Comer Byrd will serve as the program host for Black Health NOW!
radio broadcasts. Ms. Byrd, a native of Indiana, has over ten years of
broadcasting experience in news reporting and production, public affairs
and news oriented live call-in programs.
African American Medical Network begins
national roll-out with select markets
(June 1, 2005) AFMN, Inc. announced that its subsidiary, African American
Medical Network, the placed-based television network which produces and
distributes advertiser-supported patient education programming, began
installing TV/DVD viewing systems in doctors' offices in several major
metropolitan areas this month.
The installation of the TV/DVD viewing systems will occur in several
hundred subscribing doctors' offices across more than fifteen markets
including New York, Los Angeles, Chicago, Miami, Baltimore, Detroit, and
Atlanta. These installations are the first wave of equipment and
programming distribution prior to the full national roll-out to more than
3,000 offices which is expected in July, 2005.
According to Charles Richardson, president of the Los Angeles-based AAMN,
"Our equipment is free to subscribing doctors who we've been signing up
over the past several months. We know from their calls that they're
eagerly awaiting our equipment and programming. But to eliminate any
unforeseen challenges, we have decided to start out with this 'soft
launch' in order to fine-tune our installation process and work out any
kinks in our delivery system."
AFMN's primary goal is to provide educational programming about medical
and health issues related to the needs of African American patients.
Distributed monthly to doctors' offices, each updated DVD video magazine
is geared to create awareness about key diseases and the steps needed to
preserve and improve the quality of life. Hosted and voiced by veteran
actor Ernie Hudson, programming consists of fast-paced segments four to
seven minutes long that cover pertinent healthcare topics. African
American Medical's business model is funded, in part, by commercial
advertisers whose ads are reviewed and approved by its Medical Advisory
Lincoln and New
Edition join forces to enhance brand's appeal in urban markets
31, 2005) Ford Motor Company's Lincoln Brand and R&B supergroup New
Edition have announced a unique marketing collaboration tied to the
30-city "2005 New Edition Concert Tour." The two iconic brands, with
strong, celebrated pasts are reinvigorating their images among urban
consumers with Lincoln's launch of new vehicles -- like the all-new 2006
Lincoln Mark LT -- and New Edition's recent album One Love.
The multi-fold co-branded partnership involves integration of the Lincoln
Brand in the 30 cities of the concert tour. Lincoln will have a featured
role in the opening act of the concert with a two-minute theatrical video
-- that features Lincoln vehicles -- serving as lead-in for New Edition's
on-stage performance. The video portrays the five members of New Edition
admiring the Lincoln vehicles. They are so fascinated by the vehicles that
they decide to experience the Lincoln ride by taking one each for
"The Lincoln and New Edition partnership represents a merging of two
renowned and timeless brands," says Al Giombetti, president of Lincoln
Mercury. He adds, "The collaboration is part of a larger targeted
marketing effort that re-positions the Lincoln brand within the urban
consumer market space."
Adds New Edition's Michael Bivins, "We are excited about the alliance with
Lincoln. Both New Edition and Lincoln represent similar things -- style,
class and sophistication. We both are embarking on a new and exciting
phase in an already successful history, yet we continue to remain true to
our core values."
Lincoln integration will also include brand presence on the official tour
buses and Lincoln vehicles will transport New Edition members within the
local markets along tour stops.
Hilton Hotels creates multicultural
initiative with sales posts, advisory board
As part of
its continued commitment to formalizing its diversity practices
company-wide, Hilton Hotels Corporation has created two new director of
sales positions and a Multicultural Advisory Board.
The director of sales positions are responsible for creating initiatives
to increase the market share in the African American and Hispanic markets.
Carnita Chopin (above) has been named the director of multicultural sales
for the African American market, and Elvida Aparicio Rogers has been named
director of multicultural sales for the Hispanic market.
"The creation of these dedicated multicultural sales positions will
greatly enhance our ability to effectively target our outreach to these
important markets," said Larry Luteran, vice president of Group Sales and
Industry Relations. "We believe Carnita Chopin and Elvida Rogers have the
insight and tenacity required to increase our brand awareness and broaden
our reach into markets that are critically important to the Hilton Family
The Multicultural Advisory Board will recommend business
standards and practices and guide its outreach to multicultural markets.
The Multicultural Advisory Board is comprised of a diverse representation
of industry leaders with proven success in the hospitality industry and
reaching diverse markets. The board met for the first time in February at
the Hilton New York in conjunction with the inaugural Hilton Diversity
Review, during which media, analysts and key business partners were
presented with an overview of Hilton's diversity practices in all areas of
the company. The board will convene annually.
"Hilton Hotels Corporation has shown a historic commitment to diversity,
and this Multicultural Advisory Board will help us convey that commitment
to multicultural audiences," said William Holland, vice president,
Workforce Planning & Analysis. "The incredible level of expertise
represented on this board will help us shape our diversity outreach so we
can attract a broader and more diverse consumer base into the Hilton
Among the 20 members of the Multicultural Advisory
Board currently are:
– Ana Aponte-Curtis
- Director of Events Planning, NAACP
– Barbara Collins - Director of Meetings and Travel, National Urban
– Sylvia Cyrus-Albritton - Executive Director, The Association for the
Study of African American Life and History, Inc.
– John Saunders III, CAE - Executive Director of the National Forum for
Black Public Administrators
UrbanWorld Wireless has aggressive growth
plans for the year
(April 25, 2005) Fox Films, Rocafella and FUBU have all launched
successful mobile marketing campaigns on UrbanWorld Wireless' network. Now
the company is announcing plans to be more aggressive in promoting itself
as the platform of choice for cutting edge companies.
This year UWW is expanding aggressively in both national and international
markets and currently distributes its content with over 23 different
wireless carriers and aggregators worldwide. In a related strategic move,
UWW has launched a rich web site, www.urbanworldwireless.co.uk, to serve
its consumers living in the UK, Jamaica, Canada and beyond.
"We position ourselves as an exclusive provider, offering original,
cutting-edge material valued by consumers. We always aim to please," says
CEO of UrbanWorld Wireless, Mike Johns. "Our mobile marketing division as
well as our ringtone and other mobile content are both tracking towards
records numbers. We remain true to our roots, even as the markets for our
products and services are now reaching far beyond the streets from which
Fox Films recently deployed wireless campaigns via UWW for "Johnson's
Family Vacation" and "Redemption" starring Oscar winner Jamie Foxx.
Rocafella was soon to follow with a UWW campaign for Jay-Z's "Fade To
Black" which helped generate mass appeal. New Line Cinema also used UWW as
the wireless tool to generate awareness about the film, "King's Ransom,"
which opened in theatres last week.
Beyond music and film, UWW is launching major mobile marketing initiatives
in the beverage and fashion categories. The company will help
market a new liquor, Seraphin Cognac XO and clothing line Ether via daily
tag lines in its Newz alerts which will inform consumers of these
Lincoln truck promotion matches Magic
Johnson with events and the Internet
21, 2005) Ford Motor Company's Lincoln brand has teamed up with NBA legend
Earvin "Magic" Johnson for a series of signature events that highlight the
newest member of its family, the all-new 2006 Mark LT truck. The first of
these luxury immersions took place last night at Atlanta hotspot,
"Successful marketing has always been centered on a company's ability to
accurately reflect the desires of the consumer," says Al Giombetti,
president of Lincoln Mercury. "Growing success will come from our unique
understanding of how to connect with consumers lifestyles -- from the
choices in clothes they wear, music they listen to, movies they watch to
cars they drive."
Recognizing the increasing demand for personalization, Lincoln has created
the "Step Into Unexpected Luxury" events to highlight the range in auto
customization options amidst an environment that showcases the essence of
true luxury. Custom-built Lincoln Mark LTs will be featured.
Joining Lincoln in defining this luxury experience is leading urban
lifestyle franchise DUB Magazine, widely known as the leading voice
of urban auto aficionados.
A special element to the program will be an auction of a customized DUB
edition Magic Lincoln Mark LT with a bedcover autographed by A-list
celebrities attending the events. The auction will take place on-line in
July 2005 with proceeds to benefit the Magic Johnson Foundation. The "Step
into Unexpected Luxury" events will also be staged in Los Angeles May 4,
Washington DC June 1 and Miami June 15.
Lincoln and basketball legend and businessman Earvin "Magic" Johnson have
enjoyed a successful partnership since 2003. Johnson has been featured in
advertising developed through the carmaker's ad agency UniWorld Group, and
in promotions between Lincoln Mercury and Magic Johnson's wide ranging
business and community programs.
In mid-2005, Lincoln and Magic will launch a unique digital campaign
featuring a Website with cars, basketball tips, and higher education
signs as sponsor of the Tom Joyner Morning Show 'Sky Shows'
15, 2005) Budget Rent A Car System, Inc. today announced its sponsorship
of the Tom Joyner Morning Show "Sky Shows," a series of live remote
broadcasts of the nation's #1 syndicated urban morning show. The shows
are free to the public and regularly feature a national recording artist
or group and the cast and crew of the Morning Show.
Through the end of the year, Budget will offer Tom Joyner Morning Show
listeners a discount on weekly and weekend rates while raising money for
Historical Black Colleges and Universities (HBCUs). For every completed
rental made in connection with the Tom Joyner Sky Show discount promotion,
Budget will donate $1.00 to the Tom Joyner Foundation, which helps
students continue their education by providing money directly to HBCUs.
Budget will hold a raffle at each of the 20 Sky Shows scheduled this year
in cities such as Richmond, Nashville, Houston, Philadelphia, Atlanta,
Orlando and Las Vegas, and one lucky attendee from each venue will receive
a Budget Travel Giveaway. The prize, valued at $500.00, includes a weekly
car rental from Budget and an American Express gift cheque.
"Budget recognizes the growth and buying power of the African American
consumer and we are working hard to earn their loyalty," stated Scott
Deaver, executive vice president of marketing for Cendant Car Rental
Group, parent of Budget. "Through our special relationship with Tom
Joyner, we are now able to offer his loyal listener base a great value
while providing financial support to the HBCUs that are responsible for
educating generations of African Americans."
"This is great news for students attending HBCUs," said Joyner. Joyner's
radio show reaches some 8 million listeners in 115 markets. "The
partnership will help fulfill our sole mission of keeping students in
school at HBCUs."
Medical Network to be acquired by PetCARE TV
(April 8, 2005) PetCARE
Television Network, Inc. announced today that it entered into a
non-binding Memorandum of Terms to acquire African American Medical
Network, Inc. ("African American Medical"), a wholly-owned subsidiary of
AFMN, Inc. . African American Medical, an advertiser-supported,
place-based media company provides educational programming for the waiting
rooms of doctors who serve the African American population.
Definitive agreements are being drafted, and coincident with closing,
PetCARE TV plans to change its name to Medical Media Networks, Inc.
("Medical Media Networks"). Medical Media Networks will form a new
wholly-owned subsidiary and will also serve as the parent company for
African American Medical.
Philip M. Cohen, the current President and CEO of PetCARE TV. Mr. Cohen
will hold the same title with the new firm, and also serve as the
producer/director of the educational programming for both networks. Since
1984, after serving as the Director of Special Markets with Twentieth
Century Fox, Mr. Cohen has produced educational programming direct to
video and founded, developed, or operated many place-based media networks.
Charles V. Richardson will continue to serve as President of African
American Medical. Mr. Richardson previously served as Director of
Healthcare Marketing with Footsteps, LLC, a marketing and advertising
agency specializing in culturally relevant, customized communications
targeting the multicultural marketplace. Footsteps, LLC is the
multicultural communications company affiliated with Omnicom Group, Inc.,
one of the world's largest communications companies that manages a
portfolio of global market leaders in the disciplines of advertising,
marketing services, specialty communications, interactive/digital media,
and media buying services.
Previously, Mr. Richardson was President of TRIAD/TRG, Inc., a marketing
and advertising communications company specializing in the African
American market providing market research, public relations, sales
promotion, and strategic planning to Fortune 1000 companies, the
healthcare industry, and government agencies. He is a marketing and
communications expert who has specialized in the urban consumer market for
more than 25 years.
African American Medical plans to provide educational programming to
millions of African American patients through installation of viewing
systems in doctor's offices serving the African American population.
Programming for both networks is funded, in part, by commercial
advertisers that are reviewed and approved by advisory boards for each
Medical Media Networks plans to launch similar place-based media networks
in the areas of pediatrics, obstetrics/gynecology, and dermatology with
programming specific to each specialty.
Bernie Mac's 'Guess
Who' is year's fifth black top opening week movie
But it's less of a surprise when you consider that "Guess," which had a
$20 million opening, is the fifth 2005 movie starring an African-American
to open at the top spot.
It follows fellow box office champs "Diary of a Mad Black Woman," the Will
Smith comedy "Hitch," the basketball drama "Coach Carter" with Samuel L.
Jackson, and Ice Cube's "Are We There Yet?"
"I think we're talking about this because it's so unusual and
unprecedented and exciting," said box office analyst Paul Dergarabedian,
president of Exhibitor Relations Co. "It just says that all these No. 1
films have struck a chord with audiences, and, more than anything, it has
to do with the universal appeal of most of these movies."
MGM will attempt to keep the momentum going Wednesday when it opens
"Beauty Shop," a comedy starring Queen Latifah with a largely black cast.
The movie is a spinoff of sorts of the studio's popular "Barbershop" film
and its sequel.
"I think there's more savvy on the part of Hollywood in terms of casting
and in terms of developing more authentic African-American roles," said
Howard Buford, chief executive officer of Prime Access Inc. a
multicultural advertising agency based in New York City.
"African-Americans, besides being a strong movie-going market, have a very
strong desire to see themselves and their lives reflected on screen."
Three of the films -- "Hitch," "Guess" and "Are We There Yet?" -- were
released by Sony Pictures Entertainment. The studio pointed out that 55
percent of the opening weekend audience for "Guess" was non-Caucasian but
also stressed the overall appeal of the films.
"I think what these movies that we released have in common is that they
are three broad comedies with stars in them, whether it be Ice Cube, Will
Smith or Bernie Mac and Ashton Kutcher, which is an incredible pairing,"
said Rory Bruer, Sony's president of distribution. "It sort of transcends
color with very accessible stories that audiences love."
MGM is looking for the same broad audience for "Beauty Shop," which has a
cast dominated by black performers but also features Alicia Silverstone,
Kevin Bacon, Mena Suvari and Andie McDowell.
"Obviously, (Queen) Latifah is the lead of our picture, but it appeals not
only to African-Americans but to women of all races and ages," said Eric
Lomis, MGM's president of domestic distribution. "And when you ask the
guys, they all like it. That's why we're opening it on a Wednesday, to
give word of mouth time to percolate."
While the studios seek to release movies with widespread appeal, Buford
said, the critical key to the success of many of these films lies in
appealing to black audiences first and foremost.
"The African-American population is younger overall, and you tend to have
larger families, so, per household, there tend to be more people of that
prime moviegoing age of up to 25," he said. "They are very strong
trendsetters among overall American culture, so these movies also tend to
pull in white youth because that culture is their youth culture."
But the movies still have to be generally good to win the seal of
approval, as evidenced by last fall's colossal bomb "Soul Plane," a
low-brow comedy loathed by critics and ignored by audiences. Even this
week's box office king, Bernie Mac, failed to draw a crowd in October to
his Disney baseball comedy, "Mr. 3000."
"You still have to have great marketing, you have to have a good cast, and
get a lot of press coverage," Dergarabedian said. "All the things that
make movies successful apply to these movies, and they attained this
success by all these channels. It still comes down to the work. If they
had been horribly marketed, terribly acted and had no buzz, they would
The critical and commercial success of "Ray," which won the Best Actor
Academy Award for Jamie Foxx, further helps the chances for blacks to land
leading roles in films ranging from comedy to drama to musicals, said
actress Anne-Marie Johnson, national chairwoman of the Screen Actors
Guild's Ethnic Employment Opportunity Committee.
"Many of us black performers have been in the business for a while and
never really believed the statement that African-Americans could not do
well globally," said Johnson, whose next film, "The L.A. Riots," will
premiere next month at the Tribeca Film Festival.
"I think we've proven that was definitely a myth, generally. Our argument
has been that a good story will play well, regardless of race, and I think
that's been proven, especially with the current films."
t was considered something of a box office upset
when "Guess Who," a comedy about an interracial romance starring Bernie
Mac and Ashton Kutcher, trounced Sandra Bullock's sequel to "Miss
Congeniality" to take first place over the Easter weekend.
Annual Edition Available
'Buying Power' report reveals surge by black households for consumer
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
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marketing to African-American consumers
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