Where’s The Bling?
By David Morse, President & CEO, New American Dimensions, LLC
A new report released by Packaged Facts called The U.S. Urban Youth Market estimates that urban youth consumers number nearly 24 million people with a spending power of about $500 billion. The report also estimates that the spending power of urban youth consumers will grow to $644 billion by 2010.
However, the report stresses that “urban” is a mindset, not a geographic place. Its definition of “Urban Youth” is 15 to 29-year olds who chose hip-hop music as a favorite music type in the Simmons National Consumer Survey of adults and teens.
Hip-hop began in the early 1970’s as an underground movement, largely embraced by African Americans, but it has since grown to a mainstream consumer phenomenon. Today, one in three hip-hop consumers lives in small cities and towns outside the top 100 metropolitan areas.
Some highlights from the study:
- The popularity of hip-hop declines with age. Among 15 to 17-year olds, about half are hip-hop fans. The percentage drops to a little over a third for those in the 25 to 29-year age range.
- Females are a strong force in the Urban Youth population, making up nearly six in ten urban consumers.
- Hip-hop consumers are disproportionately black, though a majority are Non-Hispanic white. Though two out of three African Americans in the 15 to 29-year age group was classified as a hip-hop consumer, whites make up about 55 percent of the hip-hop population.
- Hip-hoppers are much more likely to say that they live for the moment, are motivated by money, value non-conformity, and that they see themselves as influencers.
- As consumers, they use more personal care products, prefer SUV’s and foreign cars, like to snack, try out new drinks and eat at fast food restaurants. They are more likely to see themselves as spenders and have a positive attitude about advertising.
Moderator’s Comment: Should brands and retailers looking to connect with teens and young adults attach themselves to a hip-hop persona? Is there any
As consumers, hip-hoppers are a marketer’s dream. They have spawned an entire economy going well beyond music that includes products as wide ranging as
clothing, footwear, jewelry, soft drinks, cell phones, autos and credit cards.
They pay attention to ads, appreciate them, remember them, and respond to them. And, if a brand is real lucky, it might get mentioned in the lyrics of a
To quote brandchannel.com, “Formerly perceived as a niche strategy, some of today’s successful brands realize that the term ‘urban marketing’ now expands
across the entire youth demographic.” –
David Morse – Moderator