Scott Seitz - SPI Marketing Helping Brands Reach the LGBTQ Community OutBuro lgbtq professionals entrepreneurs community gay lesbian transgender queer bisexual employer branding

Scott Seitz SPI Marketing Helping Brands Reach the LGBTQ+ Community

In this episode of OutBüro Voices featuring LGBTQ professionals, entrepreneurs, and community leaders from around the world, host Dennis Velco chats with Scott Seitz of SPI Marketing. SPI Marketing was one of the first LGBTQ-focused marketing agencies founded in 1996. Early on SPI Marketing was able to attract beverage and spirits companies. Seitz’s past career in those industries proved useful. They’ve also worked with RuPaul’s Drag Race for its first six years. Seitz explains they’ve also have worked with pharmaceutical companies and the US Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC). Other key clients have been Absolute Vodka, Miller Coor’s, Chase and many others.

Seitz shares one of the most exciting and emotional experiences spanning their currently 25 years in business happened in 2004 when they got the opportunity to work with Gilbert Baker who created the original Rainbow Flag in 1978. SPI Marketing was tasked to support the 25 year anniversary of the flag’s creation.

Seitz explains how brands can effectively work with an advertising agency like SPI Marketing through the often changing marketing team. He goes on to say that approaching the clients with a fresh view as if it is their first time there has been a key factor in SPI Marketing’s success. Also after a marketing plan is set, it’s important to be adaptive along the way. He explains a challenge for brands is measuring the effectiveness of marketing to the LGBTQ community. This is in large part due to the lack of retail insights not being able to tell when a product is sold that it was to an LGBTQ person. This problem exists regarding other demographics as well. This led SPI Marketing to partner with the market research company Barra who has over 90,000 self-identified LGBTQ persons in the panel to gauge attitudes about companies and brands from the LGBTQ community perspective. It provides the ability to track a brand over time as well as compare different brands against one another.

To connect with Scott find him on OutBüro here. https://outburo.com/profile/scottseitz/

Join me and Scott on OutBüro, the LGBTQ professional and entrepreneur online community network for gay, lesbian, bisexual, transgender, queer, allies and our employers who support LGBTQ welcoming workplace equality-focused benefits, policies, and business practices. https://www.OutBuro.com Would you like to be featured like this? Contact the host Dennis Velco. https://outburo.com/profile/dennisvelco/

A Company's True Pride 365 Days a Year - OutBuro - Company Ratings Review by LGBT consumers clients customers LGBTQ entrepreneur professional community gay lesbian

A Company’s True Pride 365 Days a Year

“It was back in the early 90’s that I started working with the LGBT+ community as one of the owners of Pride Magazine. Back then when I approached potential sponsors, I would usually be met with hostility and dismissiveness, hearing often that they “couldn’t possibly advertise in a Gay title because of the negative brand association.”

Pride 365 - Jack Mizel - OutBuro - LGBT Entrepreneur Startup Professional Gay Lesbian Community

Fast forward 25 years, how things have changed! Now seemingly every major company on earth loves to associate with the LGBTQ community and even have team members in Human Resources and Marketing that focus specifically on it. Has our society suddenly become caring and enlightened? Or is this newfound attitude a cynical attempt by many companies to appease their stakeholders and sell more products or services attempting to pander to the LGBTQ with no depth or authenticity?

My view is that as a community and as consumers there should be more tools made available that show which businesses are sincere in their support as opposed to those that are not.

Often times businesses turn up at Pride events draped in all manner of Rainbow accouterments and profess their love and respect for the LGBTQ community only to disappear until the next Pride event on their schedule.

In a recent conversation between myself, the CEO of Pride 365, and Dennis Velco, the inspiration and driving force behind the OutBüro, we found that we were in total agreement that the following 3 points need to be in place for a company to be considered truly authentic supporters and worthy of the ongoing support, loyalty, and customers from the LGBTQ community.

  1. Does the organization treat its own LGBT+ staff with the same dignity and respect as everyone else?
  2. What is the quality of the organization’s product and customer care?
  3. How does the organization market to and communicate with the LGBTQ community?

At Pride365, we have developed a mechanism by which these corporate attitudes, beliefs, and strategies can be measured. The Pride365 Certification is conferred on companies who demonstrate these attitudes, allowing consumers to see clearly at a glance and have confidence in, which companies can be relied upon to value and support the LGBT+ community.

OutBüro compliments this work perfectly in that its platform enables staff to review their place of work using real-life experience to shine a light on what would otherwise be unseen with the intent that employers strive to improve.

Tools such as these are beginning to be increasingly available. What we need now is for each of us to spread the word so that we can mobilize as a community to give our loyalty to those businesses that are genuine in their support to their LGBTQ employees, customers, and clients 365 days of the year.”