If the answer to any of these is "no," you have more work to do. These additional tips will help:
Perfect your product. You don’t have to re-invent your service. However, with the proper research and focus-group feedback, you can create a customized program that will send a positive message to your potential clients and ensure your space in the marketplace.
Perfect your message. You must develop a customized message for each of the subgroups you’ve decided to target. Learn how messaging to lesbians and gays differs, and how to maximize the opportunities presented by both. Many marketers have made the mistake of thinking they can take their existing advertisements, slap on a rainbow flag and call it a day. It just doesn’t work that way.
Implement top-down staff training. Without buy-in from the top, your program will languish. Those at the top are primarily interested in one thing—the bottom. If you can show the revenue potential of the market, you’re on your way.
Align with the community. There are a number of opportunities within local or national communities that will allow your company to align with a program that gives back. The benefits of this measure are nothing but positive.
- Develop an effective social media and advertising/promotional campaign. One cannot say enough about the importance of social media in all segmentation. Studies show LGBT consumers spend more time engaging in social media than the general market. Creating an engaging story about your company and ensuring an effective campaign is disseminated on the most visited social media sites will bring results. Of course your social media program must be enhanced by an equally effective advertising/promotion campaign.
Companies that are not attuned to the benefits of embracing the LGBT market today may find themselves playing a game of catch-up tomorrow. Those who effectively position themselves now to earn the business of the LGBT consumer will reap the benefits in a big way and for a long time. Which side of history do you want to be on?
Mya Reyes is a speaker, trainer and founder of Straight Talk on the Gay Market, a consulting firm that specializes in positioning companies to drive revenue from effective LGBT sales and marketing initiatives. A Certified Meeting Professional, Stephen Covey trainer, and one of only 13 LGBT travel specialists in the United States, Reyes advises domestic and international companies on their LGBT outreach efforts and sales initiatives. For more information, call 702.575.1080; visit www.myareyes.com .