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E-Tech Black History Month Newsletter
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New Achievements in Black History

Throughout Black History Month we remember how Black American leaders from all backgrounds helped to bring our Nation together. The inauguration of Barack Obama as president of the United States marked a defining moment in both American and World history. This historic event was another step toward Martin Luther King’s dream of a more equitable society. During the inauguration we also witnessed another historic first. A black family was being featured as the first family, not the “problem family” or the “funny family.” The nation didn’t just get a glimpse of its new first family when President Obama and his family waved to the crowds on Inauguration Day, the nation got to see that the Obama family are offering Americans a new way to look at the black family. Well educated, well spoken and the capability to turn any dream into a reality, they give a new hope that anything is possible to achieve.

A History of Black History
In February, the nation joins Black Americans in celebrating their rich culture, heritage, and contributions to the American lifestyle during Black History Month. Black History Month began as “Negro History Week” in 1926 which was established by Carter G. Woodson and was expanded to a month long celebration in 1976. Woodson is said to have chosen the second week in February for the celebration to honor the birthdays of Frederick Douglass, an abolitionist and editor, and Abraham Lincoln.

The scope to which Blacks have contributed to American life can be witnessed at even the most fundamental levels: Garrett Morgan invented the first Traffic Signal (1923); Lewis Latimer invented the Carbon Filament used in Light Bulbs (1882); Richard Spikes invented the Automatic Gear Shift (1932) and Lydia O. Newman invented the Hair Brush (1898). Today, Black Americans are still achieving firsts in politics, education and business: Condoleezza Rice was the first Black Woman to serve as US Secretary of State; President Barack Obama was the first Black President of the Harvard Law Review and is the first Black to run for the Democratic Party’s Presidential Candidacy; and Robert Johnson, owner of Black Entertainment Television, became the first Black Billionaire in 2001.

The Black Consumer Market

The Black population is younger than the rest of the U.S population. In 2007 the median age of the Black population was 40 compared to the general U.S. population at nearly 45. In addition, females represent a greater percentage of the Black population in the United States. While the Black American median household income is lower than the U.S. average, the percentage of Black American households with an income of $50,000.00 or more grew 13.5% between 2003 and 2007, compared with 8.4% for the total U.S. households.

According to the University of Georgia’s Selig Center for Economic Growth, the buying power of Black Americans was $845 Billion in 2007 and estimates the buying power in 2012 to reach $1.1 trillion. In that same year, the US Census Bureau estimated the number of Black residents at 40.7 million, comprising 13.5% of the total US population. The number of Black-owned businesses was 1.6 million in 2006, a 56% increase since 1997 and Black businesses generated revenues of $92.7 Billion that year. Black Americans are also gaining ground in education. In 2007, 18% of Black Americans held Bachelor Degrees and 1.4 million held advanced degrees (Master’s, J.D., M.D. PhD).

As this group becomes more educated and their median household income increases, they will have greater control of the consumer marketplace. Black Americans are attracted to companies that represent their lifestyle with targeted messages and images. It is the responsibility of marketers to attract and maintain a relationship with the Black consumer.

“Black folk are not just dark-skinned white people. Marketers who consciously establish a relationship with this lucrative yet underserved market, by better understanding the African-American culture, mindset, attitude, behavior and lifestyle, will reap significant long-term rewards from a loyal, influential, increasingly affluent customer base.”
-Herbert Kemp, Founder & CEO of What is Black about IT?

About Ethnic Technologies LLC:

Ethnic Technologies, LLC is the Global Leader in Multicultural Marketing, Research, Data Enhancement, Segmentation and Modeling Analytics. The EthniCenter ® from Ethnic Technologies is the result of over 30 years of continuous multicultural, religious and language preference research. E-TECH’s Multicultural Ethnic, Language Preference and Degree of Assimilation selects outperform the competition in accuracy and response rates time after time. Whether using the data for mailing, telemarketing, email campaigns or modeling, the same excellent results have been achieved. For more information, visit www.ethnictechnologies.com.

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