We’ve been busy over the past few weeks researching purchasing trends in the African American market, and we thought we’d share some of what we found with you! Looking for info on the Hispanic market? Check out our past blog post dedicated to the ever-changing Hispanic market.

African-American Brand Loyalty Insights

The African American market currently has an annual spending power of around $1 trillion, and that is projected to grow to more than $1.3 trillion by 2017. This trails only the Hispanic market in growth rate. According to a research study by Market Wired, African Americans show a much higher level of brand loyalty than any other demographic. Why? A separate study by Cone Communications shows that African Americans place a higher level of importance on Corporate Social Responsibility (CSR) initiatives and remain loyal to companies and brands that engage in CSR initiatives that have an impact on their communities. A whopping 86% of the African Americans polled said that they consider a company’s CSR initiatives before purchasing a product, and nearly 1/3rd of those polled said that they, “almost always choose brands because they come from companies that support causes they believe in,” compared to just one in five Non-Hispanic Whites.

What causes do African American consumers value most? The same Cone Communications study found that 41% of African Americans polled said that economic development initiatives were most important to them, followed by poverty and hunger at 16%, and Human Rights initiatives at 11%. With the African American unemployment rate nearly double the national average (as of July 2013), it’s no surprise that, like the U.S. population as a whole, African Americans believe the number one issue companies should address is economic development.

Companies should be aware of the opportunity to secure loyalty from the African American consumer and make an effort to get involved in the African American community. Companies that make this effort will find the loyalty of the African American consumer to be a critical asset in the long run.