NEW YORK: Logo, the Viacom-owned MTV Networks cable affiliate focused on the gay, lesbian, bisexual, and transgender (GLBT) market, said its recently announced upcoming presidential forum on gay issues has given the channel widespread media opportunities and helped boost general awareness.
"Logo is the first channel that speaks to this audience in a significant way, now that we're in [more than] 27 million homes," said Logo SVP and GM Lisa Sherman. "This will sort of solidify the position we've been building over the past two years as a really legitimate place to tell stories by and for our audience.
Organized in partnership with the Human Rights Campaign Foundation (HRCF), which held a similar event four years ago, though without a national outlet to televise it, the one-hour live forum will be held August 9 in LA and include nearly all Democratic presidential candidates, including Hillary Clinton, Barack Obama, John Edwards, Chris Dodd, and Dennis Kucinich.
The event will also stream live at www.logoonline.com.
Panelists including singer Melissa Etheridge and HRCF president Joe Solmonese, as well as visitors to www.logoonline.com and www.hrc.com, will question the candidates - appearing serially rather than simultaneously - on issues including marriage equality, the military, and HIV/ AIDS. All candidates that have raised at least $100,000 were invited. GOP candidates were also invited to participate, but either declined or did not respond.
Media outlets initially reporting on the event included the Drudge Report, The New York Times, Variety, the AP, and Fox News.
In addition to media outreach, promotion of the event will also include ads on Logo and MTV Networks sister channels, as well as content and ads on online outlets, including Logo-operated Web sites such as the www.365gay.com news site. Logo's PR agency, Witeck-Combs Communications, is assisting with strategic counsel and tactical outreach.
"For advertisers, this is an audience that is incredibly brand loyal, whether that brand [is] a candidate or a car," Sherman said. "I think that bodes well for anybody that wants a relationship with the gay audience."