Sunday, April 27, 2008

Gays and the Recession

On the cover of today’s New York Times, "Recession Diet Just One Way to Tighten Belt". It is an article that discusses and discloses how Americans are jumping ship when it comes to their usual brands. They are staying at the Hampton Inn instead of the Hilton, buying Gain instead of Tide and Oh My God!!! buying Keystone Light over Corona Light. Seems to me corporate America really needs to start paying attention to the homos in this country.

I am sure that somewhere some religious zealot will say all this recession talk is part of a grand scheme thought out by the gays and their homosexual agenda to promote their financial superiority. It is a great idea, maybe we should have thought of this long ago! I do know that I have often wished that I knew what the agenda was/is and can I participate? Can I make a donation somewhere that will get me a bumper sticker? Some things we just may never know......

What I do know for sure is that we (the gays) will not be as affected by this economic downturn as most of our straight counter-parts and we have the numbers to prove it. Personally, none of our friends have scaled back in any way, nor do they plan to do so. Seriously, what self-respecting homosexual with an active social life would buy generic?

Just think, if all those brilliant marketers out there of America’s brands would apply the same rigor and investment in the LGBT community the return they would mine on that investment. This single decision would help to stem the slide of their brands and perhaps, save a few jobs. They would be hailed as visionaries!! That same decision would also pump hundreds of millions of dollars into the gay community, which in turn would create more spending.

Eight to ten percent of the population, located mainly in metropolitan areas, more highly educated and the most loyal demographic out there. Can someone please explain to me what in the world is corporate America waiting on??

Monday, April 14, 2008

Gay Marketing Equality

Do you know how much progress your company has made in LGBT marketing?
Probably not much as you may think.

Whereas it’s true that more than half of all Fortune 500 companies are now speaking to our market – and that’s a GREAT thing – most communications come in the form of sponsorships of worthy organizations like HRC, GLAAD, NGLCC, Matthew Shepherd Foundation and more.

Brands are advertising by association, which is certainly progress. But achieving true equality means actually being treated equally. What would that look like in terms of your marketing department?

First, your Marketing Director and Brand Managers would understand the awesome buying power of LGBT consumers. Lesbian and gay Americans are projected to spend $800 Billion in 2008, and no marketer (except perhaps the brand manager of Fox News or the American Family Institute) is going to ignore that number.

Then there would be a business expectation for the LGBT market, just as there is one for the general marketing, Hispanic, African/American, Asian, and others. Accompanying that objective would be marketing strategies – advertising, direct, sponsorships, PR – to achieve the goals.

Finally, marketing dollars would be apportioned according to the opportunity.
Fairness means you treat LGBT like any other marketing segment. THAT’S equality.

And here’s the bonus your company will want to know: Treat LGBT like any other segment, treat it like a business, and it will perform like one.

To achieve equality, LGBT Americans must simply keep pushing. We’ve made progress, but our company’s marketers need to more fully understand that addressing our market isn’t just the right thing to do, it’s good business.