The $641 billion Gay Consumer Market Hitting the Mainstream

The market for gay and lesbian consumers is highly coveted and hitting the mainstream in a huge way, say consultants, marketing professionals and executives. The 16 million gay consumers age 18 and older in the USA boast $641 billion in buying power, or cash to spend after taxes, according to Witeck-Combs Communications and Harris Interactive, reports USAToday.
Last year, 175 Fortune 500 companies — airlines, automakers, financial firms, retailers and others — actively courted the gay dollar through advertising, compared with 19 in 1994, reports the 2005 Gay Press Report by the Prime Access advertising firm and Rivendell Media Co.

Recent research, based on U.S. Census data, shows that gays and lesbians live in virtually every county in the USA and aren't segregated in big cities and "gay ghettos" such as San Francisco, New York, West Hollywood, Calif., or Provincetown, Mass. And millions are smart, technology-savvy consumers and partners with dual household incomes and no kids.

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