African-Americans Younger, More Urban; Find Appeal in Black Media

September 24, 2012

This article is included in these additional categories:

African-American | Analytics, Automated & MarTech | Boomers & Older | Data-driven | Television | Youth & Gen X

On average, the African-American population is 14% younger than the American population as a whole, according to [download page] a September 2012 report from Nielsen. The median age for African-Americans is 32, and 54% of the Black population is under the age of 35, compared to 47% of the general population. 22% of African-Americans are Baby Boomers (aged between 45 and 64), and this group spends more time than their Generation Y counterparts at retail locations, fast food restaurants and gyms, and overall prefer TV and print as primary media sources, reveals the “African-American Consumers: Still Vital, Still Growing 2012” report, a collaboration between Nielsen and the National Newspaper Publishers Association (NNPA), a 72-year-old federation of 200 Black community newspapers.

In a separate report released earlier in September, Nielsen found African-Americans to spend on average far more time viewing TV during Q1 than any other race or ethnicity.

African-Americans Over-Index in Urban Areas

African-Americans are 72% more likely than the general population to live in an urban locale in and around a “Big City Urban” center. 29% of all African-American households can be found in those centers, a rate 12% points higher than for the total population.

While African Americans are far more urban than is the general population, they are far less likely to be located in areas considered “Town and Country” (24% vs. 41%).

Among the Top 10 Nielsen designated market areas (DMAs) for highest concentrations of African American Households, the Washington DC Metro leads, with African-American households accounting for one-quarter of the area’s households. San Francisco (19%) follows, ahead of New York and Boston (both at 16%), with LA in fifth (15%).

Black Media Resonates Strongly

According to the report, advertising spending in Black media totaled $2.1 billion in 2011, comprising just 1.8% of the $120 billion spent with general market media during the same time period.

Still, 91% of Blacks (of which African-Americans represent 88.8%) believe that Black media is more relevant to them, and 81% of Blacks believe that products advertised on Black media are more relevant to them. 68% want to see more commercials directed specifically to Black audiences, and about the same proportion want to see more advertising targeting Black consumers.

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