Countrywide to launch practice for the gay Scene

Countrywide Porter Novelli next week launches Scene, a business practice aimed specifically at the gay market.

Countrywide Porter Novelli next week launches Scene, a business

practice aimed specifically at the gay market.



The service aims to help brands which can benefit from exposure to the

estimated six million, gays and lesbians in the UK. It will be aimed at

that section of the gay community which leads what Countrywide calls

’extrovert’ lifestyles, involving clubbing, resorts and bars. For

example, Scene’s first client, Newcastle City Council, wants to actively

promote itself as a cutting-edge destination which will appeal to

gays.



The agency believes the gay market’s perceived position as a

trendsetter, and the relatively high disposable incomes of gay people

will be attractive to many companies, from clothes manufacturers to

mobile phone providers.



’We want to help mainstream brands which can benefit from gay consumers

but need guidance,’ director Steve Marinker said.



But Scene is not aimed merely at ’the pink pound’, he added. Rather, it

offers the communications expertise of a big consultancy allied to

specialist consumer lifestyle knowledge, he said. Marinker will be in

overall charge, with day-to-day running down to consultant Adrian

Gillan, backed by a handful of planners and account handlers.



Marinker stressed that not all potential clients would have brands

suitable to Scene’s service, and that alienating mainstream audiences

had to be avoided. ’For some there may be more to lose than to gain,’ he

said.



Research will constitute a major part of the offering, with Countrywide

suggesting that gays tend to be loyal to brands which actively target

them.



Leader, p8.



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