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 Black Stats  
Frequently requested data on African American consumers

Black Buying Power:
 $836 Billion (2010)

Black U.S. Population:
 41.1 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 $203.8 bil.
 - Food $65.2 bil.
 - Cars/Trucks $29.1 bil.
 - Clothing $29.3 bil.
 - Health Care $23.6 bil.
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Toyota launches campaign to market new RAV4 to African-American consumers

By Jane L. Levere
The N.Y. Times
(July 5, 2011) Toyota will introduce a new ad campaign next week, promoting its RAV4 compact sport utility vehicle to the African-American market.

Created by Burrell Communications, the campaign will be the first time Toyota has marketed this vehicle to African-Americans, though it has previously advertised many of its cars, including the Camry, Corolla, Avalon, Prius, Yaris, Matrix and Venza, to these consumers.

"The African-American market is looking for a vehicle that combines the utility of an S.U.V. with a more carlike ride," features the RAV4 offers, said Bob Zeinstra, national manager for advertising and strategic planning for Toyota Motor Sales USA.

The vehicle "fills a pretty important niche," added Monica Warden, group account director of Burrell Communications, which is based in Chicago, is 49 percent owned by Publicis Group and has previously worked with Toyota on campaigns for the Camry and other vehicles. African-American car owners "are looking for versatility, and the RAV4 drives like a car, has great acceleration and roominess. You sit up higher, so there's more feeling of control and command," she said.

The timing of the campaign, which begins July 11, is designed to coincide with the summer selling season, said Mr. Zeinstra, who also said Toyota wanted "to generate momentum as we move to the normal August sales event. Generating conversation around the vehicle is important at this time of year. People are active and outdoors, and this is the kind of vehicle they're looking for."

The star of the new campaign is a bulldog named Benny, who accompanies his owner, Mark, on several excursions around Los Angeles and its environs in their red 2012 RAV4; Benny's thoughts are heard in a voiceover.

In one of the campaign's two 30-second TV spots, Benny says he and Mark "were in the RAV4, it was a rough day. Got into a scuffle with the poodle across the street. It's a dog thing. Anyway, Mark decided we should flip the script and go on a road trip."

The two pick up Mark's friend, Nina, load the car with a few items, and drive off, playing music on the car's MP3 player while passing through mountain scenery. Later, as Mark and Nina sit holding hands and looking up at the starlit night sky, Benny says, "As always, the RAV handled the journey like a dream and we got to see something that would stay with us for the rest of our lives. I even forgot about the poodle. I love that day. It was one of my favs."

In the second TV spot, Benny says "one day Mark, the RAV4 and me were chillin', right ya know, ridin' down Broadway. The sun was shinin', that's when Mark had a great idea."

Mark then picks up three friends, they load the RAV4 with a grill, cooler and folding chairs, and Benny puts his bone in a well in the floor of the rear of the car. As the group dances on the beach at an impromptu party, Benny says, "We headed to the one spot that could top it all off. You know what I mean?" Drinking out of a doggy bowl with an umbrella in it, Benny concludes, "Yeah, that was a good day."

In a 30-second radio spot, Benny announces, after barking and clearing his throat, "I'm Benny and yep, I'm a bulldog. Me and my owner Mark are best friends, and with RAV4 we're a crew! RAV has everything, available third-row seats, great gas mileage, 73 cubic feet of cargo space with a secret compartment where I can store my doggy bone. Mark was even smart enough to get the value package, which includes a moon-roof and a JBL 9-speaker system. Now we don't take walks, we ride."

The two TV spots end with "Toyota, moving forward" the manufacturer's advertising slogan while the radio ad ends with "Toyota, moving forward, baby."

The TV ads will run on BET, TV One, TBS and TNT, while the radio spot will run on programs like the "Tom Joyner Morning Show."

On July 11 Toyota also will introduce digital and mobile ads featuring Benny in the RAV4; with banner advertising and rich media, these will run on sites like BlackAmericaWeb.com and Myxer.com.

Ms. Warden said her agency opted to have a dog star in the campaign because Benny was a "memorable character, and provides an interesting way in. A dog allows us to speak to men and women, and we're targeting both."

She said the African-American car buyers that Toyota was trying to reach with the campaign were 25 to 49 years old, "active, youthful, with fairly old-fashioned values, some college education" and a household income of over $50,000. Introduced in 1996, the RAV4 is now in its third generation, and has a base price of $22,475.

Awareness of the vehicle is "a big part of our goal," Ms. Warden added. "We want to make sure our target knows about it, understands its functionality. That's why we wanted to call out the cargo space, comfort, acceleration and miles per gallon."

According to industry sources, Toyota will spend $5 million to $10 million on the new advertising through early 2012.


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New "Buying Power" report: Black consumers spend as economy grows
Details $507 billion in expenditures

African-American consumers are cautiously increasing their spending in some key product categories, even as they continue to make adjustments in a slowly growing economy. The finding comes from the 16th annual edition of "The Buying Power of Black America" report published by Target Market News..

In 2009, black households spent an estimated $507 billion in 27 product and services categories. That's an increase of 16.6% over the $435 billion spent in 2008. African-Americans" total earned income for 2009 is estimated at $836 billion...

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