By Robert Stitt
It’s been said that the one consolation of being down is that the only place you can go is up. While that doesn’t offer much help to those who remain down, it can be pretty exciting when the trend line starts to spike upward.
Stacey Tisdale wrote for Black Enterprise, “If you look at most of the headlines about blacks in America, you’ll see a barrage of sad stories dominated by news about pay gaps, wealth gaps… racism, discrimination, and things like higher unemployment rates than other groups.”
Tisdale is right. The headlines are negative and, sadly, negative headlines can lead to self-fulfilling prophecies. Many Black Americans read the headlines and buy into the idea that there is nothing positive out there for them.
We need to start rewriting the headlines. Not lying, not providing false hope, but showing the good things that are happening within the Black community. Here are three great economic figures posted in Black Enterprise that can start that change:
African American income growth rates outpaced those of non-Hispanic whites at every annual household income level above $60,000.
The largest increase for African American households occurred in the number of households earning over $200,000, with an increase of 138%, compared with a total population increase of 74%.
The rate of Black high school graduates enrolled in college increased in 2014 to 70.9%, exceeding the rate of all high school graduates in the nation.
Andrew McCaskill, senior vice president of Global Communications at Nielsen had this to say about the exciting economic trend, “When black consumers see how much power they have, it will change the way African Americans look at themselves and allow them to realize what an economic power they have become. They have the power to drive the products and services that come into their lives and come into their communities.”
The impact of the ever-growing Black financial market is going to be felt throughout America. As wealth increases among Black consumers, more products and services will be purchased by them and these purchases will affect advertisers and marketing campaigns. When Black consumers start to see these changes, it will hopefully inspire those who have felt passed over for so long and breathe life into their tired souls.
Cheryl Pearson-McNeil, senior vice president, U.S. Strategic Community Alliances and Consumer Engagement notes that the shift is already starting to take place. “Savvy marketers are taking notice,” she said. It’s only a matter of time.