By Katherine Sender

In a hard-hitting publication that refutes traditional knowledge, Katherine Sender explores the relationship among the enterprise of selling to homosexual shoppers and the politics of homosexual rights and identification. She disputes a few sellers' claims that advertising and marketing appeals to homosexual and lesbian shoppers are an issue of ''business, no longer politics'' and that the enterprise of homosexual advertising and marketing may be thought of independently of the politics of homosexual rights, id, and visibility.

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Business, Not Politics: The Making of the Gay Market

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With these cautions in mind, such a comparison nevertheless offers insight into the routinized practices of market formation and suggests some of the strategies by which marketers produce a desirable market from a stigmatized group. In chapter 3, I study the people involved in producing the gay market. I consider the role marketers’ sexual identity plays in their professional lives and in the work they produce. Marketers who are gay or lesbian occupy an especially interesting position because they must promote themselves both as professionals and as possessing distinct skills and expertise by virtue of their gayness.

60 Marketers also attributed shifts in marketers’ attention back toward gays to improved research and statistics on gay consumption. From the late 1980s and into the early 1990s, Overlooked Opinions, Simmons, and other market research companies circulated data about “the gay market” based on readership surveys from the Advocate, other gay publications, and charity mailing lists: Research reveals the USA’s estimated 20 million to 25 million gay men and women to be demographically desirable—affluent and welleducated.

So if marketers can “find a market that’s educated, affluent and can be reached through targeted media . . ”60 Marketers also attributed shifts in marketers’ attention back toward gays to improved research and statistics on gay consumption. From the late 1980s and into the early 1990s, Overlooked Opinions, Simmons, and other market research companies circulated data about “the gay market” based on readership surveys from the Advocate, other gay publications, and charity mailing lists: Research reveals the USA’s estimated 20 million to 25 million gay men and women to be demographically desirable—affluent and welleducated.

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