Urban Outreach Allows Entertainment Brands to Reach African-American Consumers

There’s been no better time in history for major media marketers to utilize the urban beauty industry to promote their projects.

Personal engagement and cultural relevance have made urban salon and barbershop marketing one of the most reliable channels for out-of-home advertising agencies to pursue. With the rise of increased competition to reach this audience, which has an annual buying power of $1.3 trillion dollars, entertainment companies are scrambling to find a way to get their fair share. Black salons and barbershops create easy access to a captive and brand loyal African-American consumer.

Corporate American and entertainment brands are catching on and catching on quickly to the fact that beauty shops and barbershops are built-in, black-owned businesses that organically drive messaging and communication in a unique environment. This is why more and more movie studios, television networks, and streaming channels are disseminating customized marketing campaigns into these urban venues on the regular.

According to Nielsen, African-Americans are unique in their TV viewing choices with few overlaps with the total market. They’re also unique in that cable networks are a primary provider of their most-watched shows.

Smart media planners are realizing that black barbershop and beauty salon owners are not only the community cultural catalysts, they are the influencers influencer. They set the trends when it comes to hair and fashion, and they are considered style-icons in their communities. They also have the power to create ground swells of support for black entertainment content simply by spreading the word. Conversations barbershop and beauty salon owners have in their shops often seep into their social media platforms, where they go on to influence hundreds of thousands of followers.

And it doesn’t just stop there! Many of these individuals are also micro-influencer stars with strong social media engagement skills. Brands are now collaborating with them to broadcast movie openings and tune-in dates for new tv shows. Marketing decisionmakers are also enlisting them to help create culturally relevant campaigns that can fuel weekend box office attendance.

These strategies work because:

  1. The African American consumer has an insatiable appetite for all forms of entertainment, and they tend to watch 40% more tv and visit movie theaters more than the total market does.
  2. Shop owners in some cases are more sophisticated in non-traditional marketing than a lot of media planners and buyers, because they are always working to do more with less.

In short, urban salon and barbershop owners have had to develop the skills to become their own black creatives, media planners and strategists.  

Many entertainment brands still feel they can reach black consumers with a general market approach, but they are up against competition that knows better. These days it’s critical to create African-American focused campaigns that resonate with this segment and reach them where they are. Salon outreach programs give advertisers ample opportunities to connect in a personal and credible way—and endless ways to customize their programs for maximum ROI.

Photo by Leighann Blackwood on Unsplash

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