How will brands target LGBT consumers as the social topic of same sex marriage heats up?

Recently, same sex marriage has become a primary political issue for the upcoming American elections, but a handful of brands have been targeting the LGBT demographic even before Obama’s recent announcement supporting gay rights. Some brands are attempting to position themselves as being more edgy while others are simply acting on the cultural reality that homosexuality underscores a lifestyle market for the brand to participate in.

Recall GAP’s latest campaign? The campaign ran on numerous traditional media including print and billboards. This came shortly after J.Crew and Ray Ban’s Never Hide campaigns also featured gay couples. Another controversy developed last year when JC Penney drew criticism (and gained marketshare) for featuring Lesbian mothers in their Mother’s Day catalog. The ad instigated a protest from conservative group One Million Moms, but the protest seem to be helping J.C. Penney in terms of consumer opinion, relative to its rival Kohls.

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