Pride 2019: what we learned about LGBTQ+ marketing
Pride 2019 LGBTQ marketing - Mediablaze, digital marketing agency

Pride 2019: what we learned about LGBTQ+ marketing

Brands came out in their droves to support Pride month this year. Here are just a few of our favourite campaigns…

Pride month is over and we’ve watched as corporations all around the world wrapped up their Pride campaigns, clothing lines and special packaging. In 2019, it’s rare to find a brand staying silent during Pride Month. It’s important to understand how the people these campaigns are “supporting” feel about how they are represented. Gay Times and Karmarama conducted research that found that 72% of the LGBTQ+ community think Pride advertising is tokenistic. The community is asking brands to be thoughtful and authentic to support them in a meaningful way.

Making a statement and being a symbol of pride support is no longer enough. 

We’ve ranked some of our favourite brands that pulled out all the stops for Pride Month and London Pride. Our criteria attempted to encompass what it takes to build a meaningful campaign that has impact beyond one month. We considered how they are involving the LGBTQ+ community to understand their needs and the reach they have as a brand. Creativity was an aspect we wanted to highlight, along with any charitable contributions their campaign focused on. 

Our selections:

ASOS and GLAAD 

The online fashion and cosmetic retailer has teamed up with GLAAD – an organisation devoted to countering discrimination against the LGBT+ community – for the third year in a row to launch an exclusive collaboration for Pride 2019. This collection is even bigger and more inclusive than their previous two, including 50 pieces such as t-shirts, co-ord sets and tote bags. What’s even better – 100 percent of all net profits will be donated to the LGBTQ+ charity. The stylish collection is displayed on a diverse group of models, further emphasising inclusivity.  Shop the collection here.

Pride_marketing_asos
The ASOS x GLAAD collab includes 50 pieces, with all net profits going to charity.

Pride Gin

In need of a crisp and refreshing tipple? Want to support London Pride? Pride Gin is perfect for you. Pride in London has launched this exclusive drink in order to keep the city’s Pride event free for everyone to attend. The gin is available at Harvey Nichols and Gerry’s Wine & Spirits on Old Compton Street for £36 and is available by the glass at various bars in Soho. The bottle is one to keep once you’re finished, too, thanks to its sleek and colourful design. Learn more about it here.

Pride_marketing_gin
Show your support for Pride with the official gin…

Harry’s

Another brand hoping to support an LGBTQ+ charity through an exclusive product is Harry’s, a popular men’s grooming company. Their “Shave With Pride” set features their signature razor decked out with a new iridescent handle. It also comes with a bottle of Harry’s shave gel, three blade cartridges and a beautiful box designed by Spanish illustrator, José Antonio Roda. All profits from the sale of this set will go to The Trevor Project, an organisation that serves more than 80,000 LGBTQ+ youth in crisis each year. The campaign excels at all of our criteria – involving the community, creativity and charitable contributions. Shop the set here.

Pride_marketing_harrys
Harry’s exclusive Pride razor sets benefit The Trevor Project, an organisation that serves more than 80,000 LGBTQ+ people.

Skittles

One brand showcasing the diverse talents of the LGBTQ+ community is Skittles. The brand had four LGBTQ+ artists make special packaging for the month. We love the creativity in this campaign, and the packaging is just beautiful. Artists were told to show what the Pride flag means to them personally, and they worked in a variety of mediums. The portfolio director at Mars (owner of Skittles) said that the new campaign aims to “reflect the voice and vibrancy” of the LGBTQ+ community. The limited edition packages will be available for purchase at Tesco throughout the month. See the illustrations here.

Pride_marketing_skittles
Skittles removed the colour from their rainbow device to give back to the LGBTQ+ community.

Instagram

The social media platform is hard at work sharing untold stories of the LGBTQ+ community. Their #UntoldPride campaign is “inspired by the limitless expressions of pride we see on Instagram every day.” The platform goes on to say: “Whether you’re learning about the trans revolutionaries like Marsha P. Johnson and Sylvia Rivera, or sharing your own #comingout story, #UntoldPride is an opportunity to reflect, connect and share what it means to be LGBTQ+.” In addition, the app has included more gender options in the profile settings, colourful effects when using a Pride-related hashtag and custom camera effects by LGBTQ+ artists. In New York, they’ve partnered with @lgbt_history to dig into the rich LGBTQ+ history of the city and have unveiled “10 installations that shine a light on lesser-known historic LGBTQ+ pioneers, places, and movements that have paved the way for the queer community and the next generation continuing to make waves.” Bravo to Instagram for their creative and meaningful campaign that is touching millions.

Pride_marketing_instagram

All in all, the issue is not an easy one to unpack, but we wanted to make note of the brands that are thinking beyond their own profits to stand with the LGBTQ+ community. Moving forward, we need to be informed consumers when it comes to purchasing rainbow apparel in the month of June. If a company only flies the rainbow flag one month a year, it could be a sign that a company is exploiting Pride rather than showing true support. The same goes for other causes. As corporate social responsibility continues to be important to consumers, brands will be looking for an opportunity to stand with a cause. They must be held accountable to support causes in a meaningful way. Advertising and other forms of media, if used effectively, can be a wonderful catalyst for social change. 

What’s your content marketing strategy?

We would be more than happy to help you make the impact your brand is capable of. For assistance with creating marketing content that delivers results, please get in touch with Roger Barr, chief digital officer at Mediablaze. 

Related articles

More content
How to write a brief - Mediablaze, digital marketing agency

Content / Insight / Performance / Platform

How to write a brief. (And equally as important, why.)

A good brief isn’t just the foundation for good creative work, it’s the thing that makes every aspect of a job run smoothly.

Continue reading
Why empowered brands still need agency expertise in a changing world

Insight / Training & Consultancy

Why empowered brands still need agency expertise in a changing world

Brands are more empowered and seek to in-house digital talent but the client-agency relationship continues to thrive.

Continue reading

Content / Content strategy / Editorial / Insight

The content calendar is dead: why Agile holds the key to content plannin…

In today’s fast moving world of multiple online platforms, live feeds and disappearing content, marketers have to react and predict to survive.

Continue reading

Active / Digital strategy / Insight / Platform

Global growth in the wellbeing industry – in the pursuit of Happy …

With a focus on physical and mental wellbeing, W3 Club are creating a new kind of fitness, wellbeing and swim space in West London.

Continue reading