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Homosexual, not homogenous

Homosexual, not homogenous ( How to Effectively Target Gay Travel Markets Explored at World Travel Market 2008

Lesbian and gay travelers have the same wide demographic segments as the straight traveling population. A retired lesbian couple will have very different expectations about their ideal vacation to a 21 year old gay backpacker, yet the traditional view about these travelers within the travel industry has been that there is a single “gay market." The industry misperception that gay travelers form a homogenous target market group will be explored and challenged at World Travel Market's (WTM) Out Now Gay and Lesbian Masterclass on Wednesday November 12 at ExCeL London. For the third consecutive year, WTM has invited leading gay travel marketing experts, Out Now, to present their research and findings on the gay travel market at WTM. This year Out Now will examine the essential knowledge the industry needs to capitalize on the much homogenized, but financially lucrative segment of the international travel industry. Gays and lesbians account for around 6% of the global population and around 10% of total travel expenditure.

WTM's Out Now Gay Marketing Masterclass will be moderated by Out Now founder and CEO, Ian Johnson. This year's Masterclass titled Homosexual, not Homogenous - The importance of market segments when selling travel to the lesbian and gay markets, will take an in-depth look at the various different sub-markets within gay travel groups exploring how to best target each individual sub category.

According to Johnson, “Most of the travel industry is yet to realize that when targeting the gay travel market effectively one size rarely fits all. Gays and lesbians are a very diverse group, and within the overall market there are many different identifiable segments of gay and lesbian travelers," said Johnson. “Out Now has identified important lucrative gay travel cluster segments. We are looking forward to presenting our findings and strategic implications of our work on how to maximize travel revenues and effectively understand how to market to these gay travel segments at WTM. You would not expect a Generation X traveler to share the interests of a retiree or a honeymooner in the mainstream market, and nor should you when it comes to gay and lesbian travelers. There is not a single 'gay market', there are many sub-market segments. Our job as market specialists is to help the industry understand which of these segments make the most commercial sense to develop, and to devise and implement strategies that increase revenues by targeting gay travelers."

Forming the panel for the Masterclass, various gay market experts will provide practical insight into the critical role that market segmentation must play when it comes to marketing to gay travelers effectively. Speakers include Kim Watson, media director of Europe's largest gay media publisher, Millivres Prowler, who will explain how segmentation affects media buying and strategy in the gay media market. Carlos Kytka, The European ambassador for the peak gay travel industry body, IGLTA (International Gay and Lesbian Travel Association), who will discuss the importance of understanding the diversity that exists in the supply chain of organizations wanting to target gay travelers and Dick Stroud, MD of 20plus30 Consulting, who will cover facts on how older gay travelers differ from younger generations and will discuss the resulting implications for the travel industry. During the Masterclass several key gay market segments will be highlighted as case studies including: the gay+grey market, the youth market, the lesbian market and the growing market for gay honeymoons. Additionally the latest value of total gay and lesbian travel spend figures will be discussed along with new research findings about the growing value of gay honeymoons.

WTM chairman Fiona Jeffery commented, “The gay and lesbian travel segment continues to grow and evolve within the travel industry. WTM continually provides new insight into this rising market and now with more regions and countries officially recognizing gay and lesbian partnerships, the honeymoon and gay travel potential will be key for the industry to understand and capitalize on."

For further press information please contact Arleigh Galant Vasconcellos on +44 (0) 20 8910 7038 email: href=""> or Ian Johnson Founder and CEO of Out Now on +44 (0) 20 8123 5288/+44 (0) 7906 553 990 email: href="">

World Travel Market - New Admissions Policy World Travel Market (WTM), the global trade event for the travel industry announces a new admission policy, designed to benefit both exhibitors and visitors alike. The new WTM policy includes changes to the structure of the daily format, with WTM Opening Day on Monday 10 November, open to Exhibitors, Exhibitor Invitees, Ministers, and press. The following three days, Tuesday 11 November - Thursday 13 November, will be accessible to all Meridian Club members, Travel Trade professionals, Ministers and press, giving participants more flexibility to choose the days they wish to visit the exhibition. Students will be invited to attend WTM on Wednesday 12 November and Thursday 13 November, where they will participate in a structured education program. Individuals from the retail arm of the travel industry including travel agents, homeworkers and call center staff will be invited to attend WTM on Thursday 13 November. WTM remains a trade only exhibition. A full program of conferences, seminars, B2B meetings, and industry initiatives will run across three days, Tuesday 11 November - Thursday 13 November and includes the UNWTO Minister's Summit, WTM World Responsible Tourism Day (WTM WRTD), along with a number of new initiatives on Thursday 13 November, such as an extended Responsible Tourism program and exhibitor to exhibitor networking initiatives. For further details visit

About Out Now Established in 1992, Out Now is relied upon by the world's leading brands to understand and meet the consumer needs of gay and lesbian people worldwide. Travel clients include Lufthansa, German National Tourist Office, Switzerland Tourism, South Africa Tourism, Qantas, KLM, DFS Galleria and Hilton. Other Out Now clients include IBM, Toyota, Orange and Barclays. Out Now services include communications, market research, strategy and staff training. For further details visit:

Reed Exhibitions Reed Exhibitions is the world's leading events organizer. In 2007 Reed brought together over six million industry professionals from around the world generating billions of dollars in business. Today Reed events are held in 38 countries throughout the Americas, Europe, the Middle East and Asia Pacific, and organised by 39 fully staffed offices.

Reed organizes a wide range of events, including exhibitions, conferences, congresses and meetings. Its portfolio of over 500 events serves 47 industry sectors, including: Aerospace & aviation, automobiles, building & construction, electronics, energy, engineering, entertainment, environment, food & hospitality, gifts, healthcare, IT, jewelery, life sciences & pharmaceuticals, property, manufacturing, medical education, packaging & converting, printing & visual communication, security, sports & recreation, travel. Working closely with professional bodies, trade associations and government departments Reed ensures that each and every event is targeted and relevant to industry needs. As a result, many Reed events are market leaders in their field. Reed Exhibitions is part of Reed Elsevier Group plc, a FTSE-100 company and world-leading publisher and information provider. In 2006, Reed Elsevier made adjusted profit before taxation of £1,052 million on turnover of £5,398 million.

Reed Exhibitions
Gateway House, 28 The Quadrant
Richmond, Surrey
TW9 1DN, United Kingdom
Telephone +44(0)20 8910 7910

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