Corporations worldwide have more to gain than lose through 'public displays of affection' towards lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender (LGBT) customers and staff.
That’s according to findings from the '2010 Out Now Global LGBT Study'.
Initial results show this powerful consumer market - accounting for 6% of all sales worldwide - will choose brands that support LGBT customers with visible, well-targeted marketing campaigns.
Coupled with majority support for gay equality in major world economies, the research suggests companies need not fear targeting gay consumers.
"After 'coming out', LGBT people in 2010 are now well advanced in the process of 'coming in' - into the mainstream of society in many ways," says Ian Johnson, CEO of Out Now - a global LGBT marketing specialist agency.
"There still exists levels of discrimination and misinformation directed against LGBT people - but this new research reveals a clear trend.
He added, "Gay consumers switch brands to support companies that support LGBT customers and staff. This is highly significant - and valuable."
The Out Now Global research is underway in 20 countries - including USA, Canada, UK, Italy, Germany, France, Spain, Israel, Argentina, Mexico and Brazil.
"The research shows marketing to gay consumers, and supporting LGBT staff, can add valuable percentage points to total market share - and profits - for companies developing effective, relevant and authentic strategies," added Johnson.
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