Ad­ver­tis­ing for the Pink rand

Finweek English Edition - - Companies & Markets -

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.

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