Advertising for the Pink rand
THE GAY AND LESBIAN market is likened to black diamonds by Morné Ebersohn, MD of the gay, lesbian, bisexual and transgender (GLBT) specialist agency Pink. Both markets have large amounts of disposable income and don’t mind spending it. They also form a small percentage of the total market but have enough spending power to be desirable to marketers.
Yet unlike black diamonds there’s little formal research into the GLBT market. That’s why there’s slow uptake of marketing, especially to the community, says Ebersohn. “They don’t understand that the market has huge disposable income. Some are afraid of offending their other clients, which also comes down to lack of knowledge.”
In order to profile the market and show it’s a viable one to court, Freshly Ground Insights conducted a web-based survey. The average monthly income was R24 342. Most respondents were single, with no children or dependants, so most of their money is spent on themselves or their partners.
Results reflect a highly sociable group with a penchant for travelling and spending on luxuries. Clothing and furniture are largely bought from exclusive high-end stores. Electrical appliances, especially small ones, rate high on their “buy” list. According to Ebersohn, the replacement of one appliance, like a kettle, leads to a string of other changes, because of the aesthetic nature of the consumers.
Internationally, the GLBT market is growing – thanks to a perception it’s recession-proof – and more gay-orientated advertising is being produced. Pink points out that a dip in the rand doesn’t stop spending. The lack of GLBT publications proves a marketing obstacle, although there are many dedicated sites on the net. Advertising in the mainstream media can also work. For example, when you depict two males buying a product without necessarily implying they’re a couple.
The market is still wide open, according to the research.
Ebersohn is also the publisher of the gay magazineWrapped.