Is being LGBT-inclusive good for business?

07/10/2017 12:57 PM

Louisville Mayor Greg Fischer took to Facebook over the weekend to announce that two conventions withdrew from negotiations with the Omni Hotel due to California’s travel ban.

Mayor Fischer held a press conference last month announcing that two conventions, bringing more than $2 million in combined economic impact to the city, backed out of plans to come to Louisville due to California’s ban, but he did not previously disclose any details about those conventions.

On Saturday, the Omni Hotel released a statement confirming that two conventions had canceled because of the ban.

“We can confirm that the Omni Louisville Hotel would have been the venue for these two conventions, and we received calls from each convention withdrawing from negotiations due to the California ban,” Hotel General Manager Scott Stucky said in a statement. “We have used discretion in discussing the issue and have not identified the conventions, in hopes that we could persuade them to do business with Omni and Louisville in the future.”

With two conventions pulling out of the state’s largest city, could being LGBT-inclusive be better for business?

A study by Ogilvy found that 65 percent of Americans believe that LGBT-inclusive businesses are good for the economy.

The survey also found that companies perceived LGBT inclusion, or lack thereof, can influence consumer purchasing habits. Sixty-three percent of the people that identified as an LGBT ally, and 48 percent of all Americans said they avoid buying products and services from a business they know discriminates against the LGBT community.

Additionally 64 percent of LGBT allies and 46 percent of Americans surveyed said that seeing LGBT-inclusive advertising would make them more likely to consider purchasing that brand’s products.

Some other key findings include:

  • 72% believe that a brand/business that is LGBT-inclusive is an ally of the LGBT community.
  • 68% believe in order to be an LGBT ally a brand/business needs to “walk the talk” – follow through on promises and plans
  • 73% believe it is important for brands/businesses to employ a diverse team of people to best serve customers.
  • 57% believe brands/businesses should hire diverse advertising professionals to create LGBT-inclusive advertisements.


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