Browse through any black business magazine, and you’ll realize that most people still embrace the concept of the “American Dream”–the idea that hard work and dedication will lead to prosperity in the United States. African Americans are no different in that they, too, would like to capitalize on the promise of that dream. Unfortunately, this nation’s racially charged past, and present ghosts of that past, haunt many would-be African American entrepreneurs. The challenges faced by black business owners differ from those faced by any other segment of the population. Yet, relatively few resources are available to assist African American entrepreneurs. And this is precisely why the black business magazine holds so much value for black business owners.

By reading and studying the articles in a reputable black business magazine, aspiring African American entrepreneurs can find ideas, advice and the voices of other people who understand their plight. The struggles faced by enterprising African Americans have changed over the years, but they still differ significantly from those faced by Caucasian, Hispanic or Asian American business owners. Unfortunately, many black would-be business owners lack sufficient financial resources to start a business on their own. But it is no secret that black Americans have long faced discriminatory lending practices such as paying higher interest rates than other groups and being denied loans on a more frequent basis. A premier black business magazine can guide African American entrepreneurs through the maze of acquiring seed money for a business, and can refer them to a variety of funding sources that they may not have been aware of otherwise.

Another challenge faced by black business owners that a black business magazine will likely address is that of net worth. Since statistics show the net worth of most African American households is significantly less than that of white households, it is far less likely that a black person will be able to secure a reasonable business loan without the guidance and advice from others found in a black business magazine.

Even for those African American entrepreneurs who successfully launch their own business, many unique obstacles still lie ahead. Black-owned businesses are more likely to have less access to financial capital, a situation that makes it difficult to survive during tough economic times. Solid advice from a black business magazine can assist self-employed blacks when those tough times come.

Finally, one of the most valuable resources that business people, particularly African American entrepreneurs, can have is a solid business network. That network, often fueled by contacts made at conferences and professional meetings advertised in a black business magazine, can be the difference between a business that succeeds and one that does not.

It’s no wonder that black business magazines are valuable resources; it pays to have good advice and good connections.