Showing posts with label Commerce Gay. Show all posts
Showing posts with label Commerce Gay. Show all posts

January 23, 2020

One Thing We See on Davos, Every Company is at LGBT Pride But Where Do They Go Afterwords?




5 food and drinks companies to give $ and retain employees:

1. Starbucks
2.Big Gay Ice Cream
3.Ben and Jerrys
4.Cocacola
5.Pepsi





Edmund Heaphy
Finance and news reporter





In the war for talent in the world of business, a company having a presence at LGBT pride events is important. But what happens the day after the parade is just as important, according to a top executive at payments giant Mastercard.
“If you want the smartest people and the best and the brightest to come work for you, then you will do the things necessary not only to make your business more successful but to recruit and attract the best people to your business,” said Shamina Singh, the executive vice-president of sustainability at Mastercard.
Singh said: “I think an organization like a Mastercard, or any other company — whether or not we march in a gay pride parade every day, the truth is, it's like: what happens after the parade?”
The Mastercard executive was speaking on a panel about being free to be LGBTI at the World Economic Forum in Davos.
“You're going to see on a gay pride day, you'll see every company from Walmart to Target to Mastercard to all of these organizations out there,” she said, “because it gives us as an employee an opportunity to stand up as a proud member of our community and as a proud worker for our company — to say who we are and what we are proud of who we are.”
"But I think the question to always ask is: what happens the day after the parade?"
Singh said that actually feeling accepted in work, actually being paid the kind of salary you deserve, and working with managers and bosses who believe in you was often more important.
"If you're working for a place that actually does pay you and believe in who you are and accept who you are and wants you to be your best self, then you kind of know you're working in the right place. And if you're not, if you don't feel that, then you're not working in the right place. And you'll be able to get another job.”
Singh called the ability to be your authentic self a “God-given right.”
“That's your freedom. The freedom to be you is the freedom to be whoever you want, whenever you want, however you want, doing whatever you want.”


December 6, 2019

A Very Straight Gay Car Commercial








 PHOTO VIA HULTON ARCHIVE/GETTY IMAGES
By Harron Walker
VICE

The B in LGBTQ doesn’t stand for brands! It stands for bisexual. Or breakfast cereal mascot hentai. One of the two. Anyway, the point is that brands are not part of the LGBTQ community, no matter how many times they include us in their advertising material. I thought we all knew this? But after seeing the glowing media coverage of a new gay car commercial, I guess we need to go over it again.
The ad at hand is a new spot for the Renault Clio, which hit YouTube last Thursday, and which might as well be called “Riding in This One Particular Car with Girls.” Two women, who meet as kids, are shown bonding, making out, and falling in love in various iterations of the car model, only to be kept apart by familial homophobia and the fact that they live in different countries. (One’s French, the other’s British.) The French one marries a dude, and the British one’s like, “No…” but then the French one’s like, “Non…” She leaves her husband and drives to see her redheaded childhood sweetheart. The two are then shown, happily coupled with a daughter of their own, getting out of a Renault Clio. Gay rights! Or is it?



  A number of media outlets have rushed to celebrate the commercial, with The Independent calling it “heartwarming” and Business Insider dubbing it a “two-minute masterpiece.” Fast Company goes so far as to hail it as “a remarkable feat,” praising the advert’s portrayal of a “completely normalized same-sex relationship.” It’s not hard to understand this impulse, given the dearth of queer representation in mainstream media. LGBTQ characters made up less than 10 percent of all series regulars featured in scripted broadcast programming during the 2018-19 season, per GLAAD’s most recent “Where We Are” report on TV representation, and only a quarter of LGBTQ characters on broadcast networks were lesbians. The film industry similarly lags, featuring few queer women characters in wide-release, studio-supported movies, despite the recent successes of projects like BooksmartAnnihilationBlockers, and The Favourite.
A lesbian love story, however brief, can be a nice change of pace in a media landscape dominated by straight romance and the male gaze. But the story is still selling a car. It is now more profitable for Renault to include our narratives in their ads than it is to exclude us. Why celebrate that?

It’s also a trite narrative: The two women in the commercial couldn’t have just been queer, dated other women, eventually gotten together, broken up, gotten together, broken up, and bought land upstate to communally raise three kids with nine of their closest gal pals. No! One of them had to have a homophobic father. There had to be some sort of traumatic coming-out moment. 

The story operates entirely within the confines of heterosexuality, and ends with the two women forming a nuclear family of their own just like their parents and their parents before them! Commercial imagery featuring LGBTQ people often strives to uphold traditional narratives around gender and heterosexuality by emphasizing how “normal” we can be, going back to the earliest TV ads featuring gay men and lesbians in the ‘90s. (The two dudes in this Guinness ad?

 They’re just like mom and dad, except they’re both boys! How nonthreatening and delightful for me, Mrs. Heterosexual Beer Consumer.) It’s a dynamic author Sarah Schulman critiqued more than 20 years ago: “In today’s marketplace, they mean almost nothing,” she wrote in a passage from 1998’s Stagestruck. “[The] commodification of our experiences has now made it safe for us to be represented and have that fact reinforce the superiority of heterosexuality.”
That said if you want to like the car commercial… Watch the stupid car commercial! It’s literally not a big deal, so just don’t try to make it one. We know this is just Renault’s long con to steal back Subaru’s lesbian consumer base.

June 8, 2017

The Advantages of Advertising to the Gay Community (Survey)




 

Data shows that LGBT consumers in the US, UK, and Germany are more likely than the general public to act after seeing an ad while consumers who identify as lesbian, gay, bi-sexual, or transgender, the data is also rather clear on another point: LGBT consumers in the US, UK, and Germany want to see more LGBT people in advertising.

In America, for example, 66% of LGBT individuals report that they don't see their lifestyle represented enough in advertising, compared to 51% of the general public. The same pattern occurs in the UK and Germany, where the differences are 57% to 44% and 40% to 33%, respectively. Additional numbers show that members of the LGBT community in all three countries are more likely than their fellow citizens to wish more ads portrayed families like theirs.
The data also suggests that LGBT consumers are more likely than the average shopper to act after seeing an ad.
For instance, when asked if they search on their phone for the products and services they see advertised on posters and billboards, 43% of LGBT consumers in the US say they do, compared to 33% of Americans in general. Yet again, a similar difference in behavior occurs when measuring LGBT consumers in the UK and Germany against each nation's adult population. LGBT individuals appear more likely to research the products they see advertised on TV, as well.
For brands of all stripes, the desire of LGBT consumers to see themselves more in advertising, coupled with a history of acting on the ads they see, should make for an exciting opportunity.
Indeed, when the American retailer Kohl's included a same-sex couple in a 2015 Thanksgiving commercial, and when the UK travel agency Thomas Cook did the same for a 2016 Christmas spot, YouGov data detected a slight uptick in both ad awareness andpurchase consideration among LGBT individuals in each brand's home country.
*Data for UK and German LGBT consumers does not include individuals who identify as transgender.

February 7, 2017

“We Won, So You Better Watch Ur Back” Gay Business Owner Targeted

  

A Seattle business owner is speaking out after becoming the target of a hate crime. After news of the incident started spreading on social media, Seattle Police decided to host a community discussion about it this week.
“I've never had to hide for one minute who I was in this neighborhood,” said Aaron Amundsen, co-owner of Emerald City Tattoo and Supply in the Lake City neighborhood.  
One morning, a week after the election, his business partner, Tony Johns, found a note on Amundsen's windshield.
“I saw there was a note on my best friend’s car,” said Johns, “So I walked up and I pulled it out from under there and I read it. I came in, and I was quite upset.”
“This is the start of something really ugly,” Johns remembered thinking. “It broke my heart, it truly broke my heart.”
A Seattle business owner is speaking out after becoming the target of a hate crime. After news of the incident started spreading on social media, Seattle Police decided to host a community discussion about it this week.
“I've never had to hide for one minute who I was in this neighborhood,” said Aaron Amundsen, co-owner of Emerald City Tattoo and Supply in the Lake City neighborhood.  
One morning, a week after the election, his business partner, Tony Johns, found a note on Amundsen's windshield.
“I saw there was a note on my best friend’s car,” said Johns, “So I walked up and I pulled it out from under there and I read it. I came in, and I was quite upset.”
“This is the start of something really ugly,” Johns remembered thinking. “It broke my heart, it truly broke my heart.”

The note read, “Hey (expletive-see video). We won, so you better watch you're [sic] back. You're [sic] days are numberd [sic]. Make America STRAIGHT again to make it GREAT again. You will see, you (expletive).”
“It was like someone punched me in the gut,” said Amundsen, “because I had never experience in my life and I've been out since high school. I've never experienced something so threatening.”
The Seattle Police LGBT liaison, Officer Jim Ritter, who started the Safe Place program, calls it malicious harassment, a hate crime. 
“It is clearly a threat based on a threat of the victim's sexually identity,” said Ritter. “It's pre-meditated and the victim was targeted.”
Last week, SPD released the latest numbers and categories for hate crimes in the city, with incidents against the LGBT community the second highest category.you're [sic] back. You're [sic] days are numberd [sic]. Make America STRAIGHT again to make it GREAT again. You will see, you (expletive).”
“It was like someone punched me in the gut,” said Amundsen, “because I had never experience in my life and I've been out since high school. I've never experienced something so threatening.”
The Seattle Police LGBT liaison, Officer Jim Ritter, who started the Safe Place program, calls it malicious harassment, a hate crime. 
“It is clearly a threat based on a threat of the victim's sexually identity,” said Ritter. “It's pre-meditated and the victim was targeted.”
Last week, SPD released the latest numbers and categories for hate crimes in the city, with incidents against the LGBT community the second highest category.
Elisa Hahn, KING

January 29, 2017

Big Companies R Saying Let’s do Business but U Need to Be LGBT Certified







Large companies in the country are seeking more diversity in their suppliers, causing the number of ventures that identify themselves as “LGBT-certified” to increase substantially over the past few years, a new report by the National Gay & Lesbian Chamber of Commerce (NGLCC) showed Wednesday.

“Corporate America is saying ‘We want to do business with you -- not despite the fact that you’re LGBT but because you’re LGBT,’” Justin Nelson, president and co-founder of NGLCC, told Bloomberg. “Twenty years ago, it was enough to sponsor a pride parade. It’s not enough anymore.”

Over 900 companies have so far turned to the group’s program that certifies the ownership of an enterprise as lesbian, gay, bisexual or transgender — up from 300 in 2012.

“These numbers tell the real story,” said Bob Witeck, president of the report’s analyst Witeck Communications. “LGBT entrepreneurs find inspiration and freedom everywhere we look to create jobs and economic value in America. I think we are just scratching the surface of our potential.”
 
The process of certification is similar to that of certifying women-owned, minority-owned or veteran-owned enterprises. The LGBT certification program was started in 2004 — in partnership with the likes of JPMorgan Chase & Co. and American Express Co. — two years after NGLCC was formed. A company needs to be 51 percent-owned and controlled by LGBT owners to receive the certification.

According to NGLCC, almost a third of Fortune 500 companies include LGBT ownership in purchasing programs, marking a key step towards LGBT supplier inclusion. Nelson told Bloomberg that the companies attempting to maintain a perfect score on the Human Rights Campaign's Corporate Equality Index will also be required to include the community into their purchasing programs.

“People have this misconception that if you’re an LGBT company you are stereotypically ‘gay’ — you’re a florist or a designer, and all those businesses are great,” Nelson reportedly said. “But we have people doing aerospace and we have people doing construction and waste management.”

While the average revenue of the LGBT-certified companies stood at about $2.5 million in 2015, their total revenue was almost $1.15 billion. 

 

August 15, 2016

For Many and Growing Entrepreneurs Being of Gay Identity is an Asset






It was going to be tough no matter what.

Starting a new business is a challenge in itself, but for the lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender (LGBT) community, their identities can present an additional hurdle.

There’s often pressure on these entrepreneurs to withhold aspects of their personal lives from professional circles to steer clear of controversy. 
Since last year’s U.S. Supreme Court decision to legalize same-sex marriage, more LGBT business owners are driven by shifting public opinion and diversity-hungry companies to start openly embracing who they are.

“While people may be out in their personal lives, connecting it to their business is a relatively new phenomenon,” said Jonathan Lovitz, vice president of external affairs at the National Gay & Lesbian Chamber of Commerce (NGLCC). “But doing so has been incredibly beneficial for them.”

Erica Fields, president of St. Paul-based grain trader Brooks Grain, didn’t come out as a transgender woman until she was 53 in 2007.

Even then, she only came out to a few friends. Just five months earlier, Fields had started her business providing rye to whiskey distilleries like Jack Daniel’s and Jim Beam. Fields feared how the revelation might be perceived by her clients in a male-dominated industry.

“I thought if I just came out, I would lose everything,” said Fields, who waited until 2009 to tell clients.

That fear, echoed by many LGBT entrepreneurs, stems from a desire to avoid friction with potentially less accepting colleagues or clients, said Jay Miller, founder and creative director of Minneapolis branding firm Imagehaus.

Since starting his own firm in 2000, Miller joined NGLCC’s Supplier Diversity Initiative, which he calls a “professional way to come out” that is less frightening.

The program, which started in 2004, certifies LGBT-owned businesses and connects them to a network of “corporate partners” looking to improve diversity in their supply chain.

It follows similar initiatives that promote businesses owned by women, people of color, veterans and people with disabilities.

Recently, there’s been a spike in interest for the certification.

The national roster of certified LGBT businesses jumped from roughly 500 in 2013 to 896 by the end of July. In Minneapolis, that number grew from just four in 2013 to 22 in 2015, said Mark Waldorf, president of the Twin Cities Quorum, an affiliate of the NGLCC.

About 140 companies — including Delta Air Lines, General Mills and Target — use the program’s directory to find LGBT vendors. This year, NGLCC added the Democratic National Convention, Major League Baseball and defense contractor Northrop Grumman.

The certification can help a new business get noticed and make new connections, said Teresa Mock, owner of wedding planner L’Etoile Events in Minneapolis.

Mock attends NGLCC and Quorum events, such as Quorum’s annual luncheon on National Coming Out Day.

At last October’s luncheon at the Marriott City Center, Mock found vendors she’d like to use for future events. Mock, who started her business January 2015, displays her NGLCC certification on her website and says it’s a good way to filter out a “poor match.”

“When someone looks at the website and sees that [certification], and if that’s a reason they don’t want to work with me, they have to look no further,” Mock said. 

It’s a way for companies to go beyond preaching diversity as they feel pressure from groups like the Human Rights Campaign, which tracks workplace equality at Fortune 500 companies.

“They can’t just say it anymore,” Miller said. “They have to actually follow through with what they say by action, and it needs to be in a way that is measurable.”

Fields said she was asked by Jack Daniel’s, one of her biggest clients, to apply for the certification a year ago. She said it’s mutually beneficial — Jack Daniel’s gets to tout supplier diversity while she cements relations with a vital client. Fields said she sees more companies trying to up their diversity as more consumers are voting with their wallet.

LGBT consumers are especially drawn to companies that reflect their values, according to a 2015 survey by Community Marketing Inc., an LGBT market research firm used by NGLCC.

The survey found that 89 percent of purchasing decisions by gay men and 92 percent by lesbians are influenced by a company’s treatment of LGBT workers.

And their buying power is not one to scoff at — a 2014 survey by the U.S. Census Bureau found about 783,000 same-sex couples earned an average of nearly $118,000 year.

Still, a fear of the unknown lingers for LGBT business owners: Will clients welcome their identity or leave because it’s incompatible with their views?

When Fields came out in late 2007, her daughter Cara offered to step in and tend client relations. Over the next year and a half, Fields transitioned in private and prepared to come out to her clients. Fields wrote “heartfelt” letters to about 15 clients and business partners explaining her journey and reassured that it wouldn’t affect the business.

Relationships changed. Some clients felt uncomfortable interacting with Fields directly, she recalled, and it took them time to adapt to the change.

But she didn’t lose her clients. She said she considers herself lucky.

“It was a cathartic experience,” she said. “These were people who I’ve known for years. … And I think over time, there’s a growing sense that it’s not a big deal.”

Advocates say there’s more work to be done. Lovitz said NGLCC has its sights on new bills that would allow LGBT-owned businesses to vie for a portion of government contracts that are awarded to businesses owned by women, minorities, disabled people and veterans.

So far, California and Massachusetts have already adopted such provisions and a similar bill was introduced in New York in May.

By advancing LGBT entrepreneurs, activists aim to leverage the business success for more wins for the wider community.

“Many of the lessons learned from marriage equality are being used all over again to fight for business inclusion, which is leading with the business case,” Lovitz said. “Whether you’re for or against LGBT people, everyone’s for a strong economy. When we can make the case that equality is good for business, I think that’s going to help win more of these victories.”

By Covey Son  • covey.son@startribune.com
Star Tribune

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