Public Resource

Beyond Demography: Black Audiences Online

Win Black/Pa'lante, A/B, and Harmony Labs
11-12-2020

This resource looks at where Black audiences are when they are online and how they act when they get there. This goes beyond reliance on polls and surveys to create a more complete picture of the culture people are consuming, creating and being inspired by. Key takeaways include the identification of five distinct Black audiences: Strivers, Planners, Learners, Gamers, and Bootstrapers, along with the most popular platforms (Google and YouTube) and the fact that most Black people are getting COVID news from mainstream and left-leaning outlets on their desktops.          

The topline descriptions for what each audience is doing on the internet are:

  • Strivers are shopping, banking, and working.
  • Planners are working, managing money, and doing their taxes.
  • Learners are learning, esp in during the pandemic with remote schooling.
  • Gamers are entertaining themselves through social gameplay.
  • Bootstrappers are getting deals and making money. 

Another key takeaway from the research is the fact that, uniquely across demographic groups, Black audiences' time on YouTube is driven by music consumption. The full resource provides additional information on each audience, including age ranges, employment status, education attainment, and word clouds indicating patterns of internet use.