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How to Market to People Not Like You: "Know It or Blow It" Rules for Reaching Diverse Customers by KELLY McDONALD

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Chapter 15. Sexuality: Gay, Lesbian, Bisexual, and Transgendered

Two of my friends bought a house together not long ago. It was their first house, and they were really excited about it. Buying your first house is thrilling—and terrifying. There's a lot to know and it's a big step. So they were both a little stressed out about it. They're very meticulous, organized people and they did their homework on all the "ins and outs" of buying a home.

When they shopped for mortgages, however, they were disappointed to find that, instead of the mortgage brokers making things easier for them, the brokers actually added to the stress of the situation. In meeting after meeting with various brokers and lenders, they found that aspect of the process to be very difficult. Why? Because my friends are gay. Their very presence, sitting in a bank across from a loan officer or across the desk from a broker, made these loan executives uncomfortable. Dave stated to me, "You could tell these guys had no experience with a gay couple trying to get a mortgage. They were so nervous—couldn't even look us in the eye—either one of us! Why would I want to do business with someone who can't even look me in the eye?"

Dave and Don ended up using a mortgage broker from the Gay Mortgage Directory.

The interesting thing was, the broker they used was not gay! They found a local broker through the directory and through the course of several conversations with him, Dave and Don learned that the broker was not gay. They were ...

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