Black Consumers Deserve Better Service From Black-Owned Businesses
I think that black business owners need to do a better job developing a compelling value proposition to the black consumer market. We need to give black consumers more credit. Black consumers know what products they like, they know when they want to purchase their products, they also know where they will receive the best customer service and shopper experience when purchasing a product or service. Black consumers are also prepared to pay good money for goods and services that they value just like any other demographic. What they expect in return is quality service, competitive prices, quality products and a great shopping experience when frequenting black-owned companies. Black business owners can’t and shouldn’t expect black people to shop at black owned establishments just because the owner is black. It’s not a good reason to start a business and if you are a black entrepreneur, that reasoning alone, will not stimulate black consumers to spend their hard earn money in your establishment. Thinking that way will only get your feelings hurt and make you bitter towards the black consumer market. You will make comments like “black people don’t support black businesses.” It’s not fair to make black people feel like they are obligated to shop at a black-owned business just because they are black. Black consumers deserve better service from black business owners and a great place to start is to learn everything there is to know about, content marketing; traditional marketing; digital marketing; marketing research; consumer behavior; data analytics; Social Media marketing and the consumer buyers journey.
Black business owners who take consumer behavior for granted and do not understand how important the role marketing plays in the success of their business will never fully understand why they can’t attract the black consumer to purchase their goods or services.
Marketing is the anticipation, management, and satisfaction of demand through the exchange process. Marketing encompasses all facets of buyer/seller relationships. Specific marketing activities include environmental analysis and marketing research, broadening and organization’s scope, consumer analysis, product planning, distribution planning, promotion planning, price planning, and marketing management. —Marketing Second Canadian Edition, page 5, Joel R. Evans, Barry Berman, William J. Wellington—
Consumer Behavior is the behavior that consumers display in searching for, purchasing, using, evaluating, and disposing of products, services and ideas which they expect will satisfy their needs. The study of consumer behavior is the study of how individuals make decisions to spend their available resources(money, time, effort) on consumption-related items. It includes the study of what they buy, why they buy it, how they buy it, when they buy it, where they buy it, and how often they buy it. —Consumer Behavior Third Edition, page 6, Leon G. Schiffman, Leslie Lazar Kanuk—
It is not that black consumers will not shop with black stores, products or services, most American consumers are looking for the best buy, the most convenient, best quality within a relatively short distance from where they live. —Joe Hicks—
Listen if you type black consumer market in the search bar of google’s search engine you will see a list of results with headlines that read like this;
- Black consumers still set trends and dictate popular culture
2016 Nielsen Report: Black Buying Power Has Reached Tipping Point
African-American Consumers are More Relevant Than Ever
- The Trillion Dollar African American Market
- 7 Brands Effectively Marketing to African American Consumers
I can keep going, but I think you get the picture. Marketers in non-black establishments are developing campaigns to attract black consumers to purchase their products and services every single day. Marketers in non-black establishments are doing the research in order to place their products in front of the black consumer, but more importantly, they are doing a better job than you are in showing the value of their product and services. Now, what are you gone do about it? Will you continue to alienate black consumers by calling them coons for not shopping at your store or will you develop a better marketing plan? It’s on you. Black consumers are ready to spend, now it’s up to you to show them why shopping at your store will be more beneficial to them, not you… but them.
Before starting a business here are questions you should ask yourself:
- Who is my target audience?(And the answer to this question cannot and should not be “Everyone”)
- Where is my target audience?(Local, National, Global)
- How does my target audience like to be targeted?(radio ads, telemarketing, tv ads, Social Media ads, digital marketing, direct marketing, events, etc.)
- Can my target audience afford my prices?(don’t promote your 40 dollar t-shirts to low-income families, promote them to people who can afford them)
- What sets your companies products and services, apart from your competitors?
If you have already started your business, here are questions you should ask yourself:
- What is the public saying about our company?
- Are we on pace to meet company goals and objectives?(monthly, quarterly, annually)
- How is our target audience finding us?(word of mouth, social media, ads, etc…)
- Are we meeting consumer demand?
- How can we increase sales and grow our brand?
In closing, black consumers are not all alike. They are young, they are old, they go to high school, they go to college. They are employees, they are entrepreneurs. They are poor, in the middle class and many are rich. They are single, they are married, They are parents. They are single moms and dads. They are heterosexual, they are gay/homosexual. They marry in their community and some are in interracial relationships. You cannot and should not expect all black people to share your Afrocentric views. Don’t take black consumers for granted, and do the work necessary to influence and stimulate them to frequent your store. It’s important to understand that marketing research and understanding consumer behavior will help resolve difficult challenges your company faces, and allow you to develop marketing strategies and tactics to meet your company goals and objectives. So yes… black consumers deserve better service. Think about your target audience and what you need to do, to get your black consumer audience excited about the products and services your company offers.
Staff writer David P Fenelus
David P Fenelus is presently studying Social Media and Digital Marketing, at Herzing College, in Montreal, Quebec, Canada. He is the web publisher of www.nuwla.com. His interests are digital marketing; traditional marketing; content marketing; black history; reading; social issues; NBA basketball; NFL Football; and fantasy sports. You can follow him on Twitter @davidfenelus For information on how to achieve maximum user experience at Nuwla.com click the following link, http://nuwla.com/information-for-maximum-u