Gay and Lesbian/Queer Markets/Marketing
JOHN EDWARD CAMPBELL
Temple University, USA
“Gay marketing” or “gay and lesbian marketing” refers to advertising campaigns designed to appeal to gay male and/or lesbian consumers, whether these advertisements are explicit or coded. Because advertising appeals targeted at gay male and/or lesbian consumers are seldom inclusive of bisexual or transgender people, the term “LGBT marketing” is not generally used by either marketing professionals or scholars (Chasin 2000; Sender 2004; Campbell 2005). The term “gay marketing” can be used to indicate advertising campaigns aimed specifically at gay male consumers, lesbian consumers, or gay male and lesbian consumers more broadly. Gay marketing is part of a larger shift in the advertising industry during the latter half of the twentieth century away from so-called “general market” appeals to advertising campaigns aimed at specific “niche markets” or “target markets” (Turow 2006). Gay marketing appeals take the form of advertisements or sponsored content in gay-oriented publications (e.g., The Advocate, Out, Instinct Magazine, Curve, MetroSource) and on gay-oriented websites (e.g., PlanetOut.com and Gay.com), direct mail solicitations, coded advertisements appearing in the commercial media, and, more recently, open appeals to gay consumers in the mainstream media (Gross 2001; Sender 2004; Campbell 2005; Ostrow 2012).
The historical development of gay marketing is ...