Over 8.5 million unique visitors worldwide from the ABC1 socio-economic demographic visit the World’s largest gay and lesbian communities, Gay.com and Gaydar.co.uk. In a survey of the website’s users, it was found that:
- 96% of these visitors accessed the Internet on a daily basis
- 89% shop online for products and services
- 53% earn over the national average
Furthermore, gay and lesbian Internet users are predominantly single, educated, cosmopolitan, technology friendly and financially independant with higher disposable income than the national average.
It is obvious that such a potential demographic user base would be very attractive to any online business. However, marketing to gay consumers can be notoriously difficult. Click the link below to find out how we can help:
A survey taken at the 2000 London Mardi gras found that over 57% of the lesbian and gay population were either single or in casual relationships. The biggest driving force for such a demographic is naturally bound to be a search for a partner. Even more so with the gay community where relationships are notoriously harder to maintain.
Shopping, entertainment and travel seem to be the largest areas of expense for this market.Advertising to this market, in spite of the vast numbers, is at best restrained. This could possibly be due to the common misconception that everything must be sexual or it will notattract clicks from homosexuals.
In the USA, large companies face further restraint due to fears of alienating their wider, mostly conservative customer base. This however, does not explain the relative lack of small to medium companies targetting the LGBT market specifically.
Social Network Numbers
In the UK, QSoft owns the widest and by far the most popular group of social netowrking sites, even outnumbering heterosexual dating sites in number of unique visitors. Gaydar.co.uk is a perfect example displaying the herd mentality of such a demographic. LGBT users, like their heterosxual counterparts flock in droves to the most popular social networking sites simply to maximise their chances of finding a partner / date / trick!
Marketing To Gay Consumers
Building a website to specifically target gay consumers need not be a sleazy affair. Many established businesses would do very well to just place subtle hints that they welcome the pink pound. Wedding planners and online jewellery stores have picked up on this and done very well since December 2005, when civil partnership for same sex couples became legal.
Taking the cue from such websites all other online shopping portals, travel brokers and information sites can also provide gay friendly content, special mention of items and services targeted to LGBT visitors or even simply by introducing the option of a partner rather than a spouse being included on 2 for 1 or family offers.
Furthermore, marketing online or offline to gay and lesbian consumers is far simpler owing to the dominance of only a handful of targeted websites and publications that reach the vast majority of the LGBT population. Gay search engine marketing and advertising online, on the other hand requires a bit more specialist attention as it involves proactively targetting a very specific demographic out of a large generic market base.
The statistics for this article have been drawn from Gay.com user surveys and the Gay to Z website maintained by Stephen Coote & Associates.