SEO and Homphobia

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One search engine optimizer writes about dangers of promoting your product or service to gay men and women:

Despite all the hype, homosexuality is not without controversy. Millions of Americans believe that homosexuality is sinful. Others find the idea of homosexuality to be repugnant. Others, while having no problem with homosexuality per se, are offended by the perceived loose morals of the gay community which endorses promiscuity to the point that entering a public bathroom is taken as an invitation to sex.

Conservative Christians boycott large corporations which endorse homosexual behavior. Even to non-religious folks, the gay affiliation may be enough to turn the consumer on to the competing brand.

It has been some time since I’ve opened a gay slick newsstand publication but I do remember being surprised by the mainstream corporations that were advertising. Likewise the companies that somehow advertised on Will & Grace without a problem.

And the major corporations that didn’t flinch when there were protests when the companies decided to offer same-sex partner benefits.

But the article is two years old. I wouldn’t have cited it if the author weren’t refreshing his site and briefly brought it back to the front page.

Marketing to the Gay Community


I think the distinction that may be missed is of marketing in gay venues vs marketing a non-gay product as gay.

Interested in your take on it.

This was funny in a way. I’ve looked at your blog on and off and several days ago I registered so I could leave a comment.

Then out of curiosity I did a search for gay SEO and ran across your old entry.

The only reason I can see for advertising most products in a gay magazine – to pick an example – is to increase market share. Pretty much the same as any specialized market, narrow demographic. Or to build up goodwill – say – Kellogg’s putting Caesar Chavez on boxes of Cornflakes.

Marketing to suggest something naturally accompanies a certain kind of ‘lifestyle’ can get a bit blurry. – jeans in a magazine aimed at African-American youth or gay men – hopefully isn’t saying that they are the exclusive province of people of a certain race or sexual orientation. Though black heritage or gay pride would be different.

Aside from select cultural objects and professional services most things are like Coke: for anybody who enjoys it.

I’m not sure how useful the word ‘pander’ is when talking about marketing products. What would become of advertising if people’s self-image and self-perceived needs weren’t exploited and pandered to?

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