What you need to know

Black artists play a critical role in shaping culture and trends in the US, and Black consumers’ interests in entertainment and leisure activities can also be very influential. Currently, this important consumer group is still recovering from a historic pandemic that had a particularly devastating impact from both a health and an economic perspective, making lower cost and in-home entertainment the primary focus. In this Report, Mintel examines Black consumers’ changing attitudes around leisure and entertainment in the wake of the pandemic and identifies areas for building loyalty and growth.

This Report looks at the following areas

  • The impact of COVID-19 on Black consumer behavior in the leisure and entertainment category

  • Black consumer attitudes regarding how they spend their free time

  • Black consumer participation in leisure activities such as watching TV and streaming video, reading, hobbies and shopping

  • Strategies entertainment companies can use to attract a broader Black audience


For the purposes of this Report, Mintel focuses on Black consumers’ in-home and out-of-home leisure activities, with particular emphasis on video content and digital entertainment.

This Report builds on Black Consumers’ Lifestyles and Entertainment – US, 2019 and Black Consumers’ Content Consumption and Sharing – US, 2018. Readers may also be interested in Black Consumers: Digital Trends and Impact of COVID-19 One Year Later – US, 2021.

Market context

This Report was written in June 2021. Consumer research was fielded in April 2021.

Black consumers and other people of color were particularly hard hit by COVID-19, both from a health as well as an economic perspective. Black people were more likely to contract and die of COVID-19 as well as experience job loss. These factors undoubtedly made it difficult for many in the community to spend money on leisure activities, although these factors also play an important role in the importance of relieving significant stress caused by the pandemic.

Economic and other assumptions

Mintel bases its expectations for economic growth on projections provided by the CBO, the FOMC, the Conference Board and other public sources. Consensus estimates forecast US GDP to increase by 6.5% in 2021. Unemployment has been forecast to decline to as low as 4.1% by the end of 2021 with an average of 5.7% for the year.

COVID-19: US context

The first COVID-19 case was confirmed in the US in January 2020. It was declared a global health pandemic and national emergency in early March 2020. Across the US, various stay-at-home orders were put in place in Spring 2020, and nonessential businesses and school districts closed or shifted to remote operations. The remainder of 2020 saw rolling orders, as states and local governments relaxed and reinforced guidelines according to the spread of the virus in each region.

Vaccine rollout began in December 2020, although distribution has been uneven. Black consumers have been lagging considerably behind other groups when it comes to vaccination, due to a variety of factors. Mintel anticipates business operations in the US will remain in a state of flux through 2021 as vaccines are widely administered and social distancing restrictions and capacity limitations are relaxed.

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