The Pursuit of Pink Money: Gay and Lesbian Spending Patterns

Strategy Briefing

About This Report

Feb 2010

As the global recession drags on and most consumers remain cautious about spending, the pink dollar continues to thrive. The higher disposable incomes of gay and lesbian consumers, along with more relaxed attitudes towards gay culture around the world, is opening up a wealth of opportunities for companies to target this large and lucrative niche. This new Strategy Briefing examines the spending habits of the global gay community, current marketing strategies and recommended actions going forward

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The Pursuit of Pink Money: Gay and Lesbian Spending Patterns

What this report includes

  • Top-level strategic analysis of how major consumer trends will influence global markets
  • Consumer insight
  • Impact across all relevant consumer markets
  • Unique graphics and case studies
  • Key market snapshots
  • Accompanying presentation to synthesise main findings

Why buy this report

  • Identify factors driving change now and in the future
  • Understand motivation
  • Forward-looking outlook
  • Briefings and presentation should provoke lively discussion at senior level
  • Take a step back from micro trends
  • Get up to date estimates and comment

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The Pursuit of Pink Money: Gay and Lesbian Spending Patterns


Demand Factors
The Gay Consumer
Chart 1 Number of Potential Gay and Lesbian Consumers by Country 2009
Market Opportunities
Company Developments


Identifying Gay and Lesbian Consumers
Bisexuals and Transgendered People
Gay/LGBT Marketing


Gay rights vary significantly
From the most severe ...
... to the more liberal
American gays look to Obama for advancement
Argentina leads the way in Latin America
Progress in Western Europe
Eastern Europe lags behind
Gay adoption becoming more widespread
Summary 1 Gay Rights in Selected Countries 2009
Changing Attitudes Towards Homosexuality
Familiarity breeds tolerance
Rise in pink conferences
Younger generation more open
France – no questions asked
Germany – more liberal since 1998
Spain embraces gay community
Discrimination remains widespread in Eastern Europe
Attitudes relaxing throughout Asia
Gay Events
Gay Pride events
Sporting events and organisations
Gay Influence on "Metrosexuals"


Size of Market
Lack of statistics
Where is the market most developed?
Is the market growing?
Table 1 Estimated Number of Gay and Lesbian People in Selected Markets 2004/2009
Gay couples
Locations of gay communities
US cities with largest gay concentrations
Table 2 US Cities With Largest GLB Populations 2006
Spending Power of LGBT Consumers
The value of pink money
Chart 2 Purchasing Power of the US Gay and Lesbian Market 2003/2008/2011
An affluent consumer group
Higher incomes
The other side of the coin
Looking to the East
Coping with recession
Table 3 Impact of Recession on Spending Behaviour in the US, October 2008
Continued optimism


Market Segmentation
Not a homogeneous market
German study identifies five consumer types
US study reaches similar conclusion
Chart 3 US Gay and Lesbian Consumer Segmentation 2007
Gays and Lesbians: Two Distinct Markets
Gay men have higher incomes
Lesbians prefer a quieter life
Gay women more likely to be in a relationship
Unions considered as a good as marriage
Summary 2 Gay and Lesbian Trends in the UK 2005
Active lifestyles
Summary 3 Gay and Lesbian Lifestyle Trends 2007
Living arrangements
Gay marriage and home-making
Civil partnerships fall slightly in the UK
Gay parenting
Consumer Characteristics
Education and work
Table 4 Gay Employment and Education in the UK 2007
Attention to health and appearance
Table 5 Attitudes Towards Health and Fitness Among Gay Men 2007
Brand loyalty
Early adopters
Keen to network
Attitudes Towards the Environment
Table 6 Attitudes Towards Environmental Issues in the US in 2009
Gay Icons
Influence of the celebrity culture
Pop icons
Gay role models
Regional icons


Hunger for Media Consumption
Television Viewing
Higher subscription rates to cable and satellite
Dedicated TV channels
Print Media
Avid readers
Press advertisements are highly influential
Industry sees consolidation
Internet Usage
Gays spend longer on-line
Gay websites expand globally
Table 7 Gay Website Traffic 2007
Social networking gains pace
On-line/mobile phone usage
Chart 4 UK: Secondary Mobile Phone Use by Gay Consumers 2009


Leisure and luxury are key areas of expenditure
Pet foods and products
Table 8 The Global Market for Pet Products 2004/2009
Gay weddings open up new opportunities for marketers
The US market
Table 9 Top Purchasing and Expenditure Categories for Gay Men in the US 2007
The UK market
Table 10 Top Expenditure Categories for Gay and Lesbian Consumers in the UK 2008
Travel and Tourism
A thriving market
North America is largest market for gay travel
Summary 4 Top 10 Destinations Within the US for Gay and Lesbian Travellers 2009
US gay travellers are more intrepid
Canada develops as gay-friendly destination
European market remains buoyant
Gay hot spots in Latin America
Asia still underdeveloped
Gay-friendly travel companies
Overseas weddings – and babies too?
Summary 5 Gay-friendly Travel Companies 2009
Men's Grooming
A key growth area within cosmetics and toiletries
Market fuelled by value-added skin care products
Metrosexual trend driving growth in BRIC markets
Table 11 The Global Market for Men's Grooming Products 2004/2009
Alcoholic Drinks
Higher incidence of smoking and drinking
Market affected by recession
Table 12 The Global Market for Alcoholic Drinks 2004/2009


Gay-friendly Companies
High level of support from gay community
The most gay-friendly companies
Chart 5 Companies Perceived to Be Gay-friendly in the US 2008
Anti-gay reaction
Less Gay-friendly Companies
Chart 6 Companies/Brands Perceived to Be Least Gay-friendly in the US 2008
Gay-friendly Policies
Gay-only brands
Dedicated marketing teams
The launch of limited-edition brands
LGBT-friendly Companies: Case Studies
Levi Strauss
Harrah's Entertainment
MAC Cosmetics
Advertising Trends
Print media
Chart 7 Ad Spending in Gay and Lesbian Publications in the US 2003-2006
On-line media
Who advertises in gay media?
Summary 6 Consistent Advertisers Through Gay Media in the US 2009
Types of advertising
Advertising awards
Marketing agencies


Trends to Watch
Attitudes will become more relaxed
Gays will remain an affluent niche
More legislative changes on the way
China holds potential
Information is power
New ways of reaching the market
Consumer Market Opportunities
New markets to explore
Growth of gay travel
Potential in men's toiletries
Careful planning required
One size does not fit all
Getting the right balance
Summary 7 Gay Marketing: Opportunities and Recommendations