Gay, Lesbian, Bisexual and Transgender Adults Penalize GLBT-Unfriendly Biz

September 27, 2007

This article is included in these additional categories:

Men | Women

Nearly one in four (24%) gay, lesbian, bisexual, and transgender (GLBT) adults say they have switched products or service providers in the past 12 months because they found a competing company that supports causes that benefit the GLBT community - when factors such as price, quality, and convenience were not also considerations.

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According to the national online survey by Harris Interactive and Witeck-Combs Communications, nearly one-third (32%) of gay men say they have switched products or services within the last 12 months because they found a competing company that supports GLBT causes.

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Moreover, the survey found that a high proportion of gay men and lesbians (70%) had switched products or service providers because they learned the company engaged in actions they perceived as harmful to the GLBT community.

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In terms of brand loyalty, about two-thirds (66%) of all GLBT adults reported that they would be very or somewhat likely to remain loyal to a brand they believed to be very friendly and supportive to the gay, lesbian and transgender community – even when less friendly companies may offer lower prices or be more convenient.

Three out of four (75%) gay men and lesbians also said they would remain loyal to the gay-friendlier brand.

“For nearly a decade, we have tested customer loyalty benchmarks, to better understand the connection between GLBT consumers and brand reputations. Consistently, no matter how we frame the questions, we find GLBT consumers place a high value on brands that earn and grow respect within the community,” said Wes Combs, President of Witeck-Combs Communications.

“They remain loyal to companies that support causes that are important to them, and are highly motivated to learn about corporate social responsibility in all its forms. They are among consumers most motivated to vote with their dollars.”

About the study: Harris Interactive conducted the study online within the United States between August 7 and 13, 2007, among 2,868 adults (ages 18 and over), of whom 2,518 said they are heterosexual and 350 were self-identified as gay, lesbian, bisexual or transgender (this includes an oversample of GLBT adults). Figures for age, sex, race, education, region and income were weighted where necessary to bring them into line with their actual proportions in the population. The results for the gay and lesbian sample were weighted separately based on profiles of the gay and lesbian population that Harris Interactive has compiled through online surveys. Propensity score weighting was also used to adjust for respondents’ propensity to be online.

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