Posts Tagged ‘Society’

Global market research company Mintel recently estimated the spending power of the gay population to be between £6bn and £8bn per annum in the UK and US$464bn in the US.

 

With these kind of numbers in mind it is perhaps no surprise that some drinks companies have sought out the “pink pound”.

In the book Principles of Marketing, authors Frances Brassington and Stephen Pettit wrote: “Gay consumers are perceived to have a higher than average income, and almost 60% of gay men are either single or not cohabiting. Those who are cohabiting are likely to be in dual income households.” The book adds: “The lack of dependents and responsibilities gives gay consumers more opportunities for lifestyle spending with a strong focus on leisure and socialising.”

According to gay website Queerty.com, “if there are two things gays like to be at the forefront of it’s trends and liquor.” So, with this attitude and the knowledge that the Gay Times magazine claims that 80% of its readership comes from the ABC1 socioeconomic groups, compared with 43% of the general population, targeting the gay population should make sense for many drinks brands.

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THE FREEMASONS are said to be one of the most secretive societies in the world. They have many mysterious rituals, special symbols and words and at least 12 different handshakes (some of which can be seen on YouTube). Some wine societies are almost as secretive, although their members are less likely to employ a special handshake than they are to break into song.

Two of the most exclusive wine societies, La Confrérie des Chevaliers du Tastevin and the Commanderie de Bordeaux, have special songs that accompany an evening of drinking and are delivered in French (naturellement). The Tastevin tune is a traditional Burgundy chanson, while the Commanderie song, “Toujours Bordeaux,” is a more recent work. Created in 1998 by Eric Vogt, the music-loving maître (or head) of the Boston Commanderie chapter, the song won a prize at a competition in Bordeaux. (The prize was Mr. Vogt’s “weight in Bordeaux,” or 10 cases of wine, although Mr. Vogt maintained that the prize committee erred “on the generous side.”)

The Commanderie ditty is a fairly rousing number and, save for a few references to the region’s major varietals and great châteaux, it might well have been my college drinking song. On the other hand, the group I saw singing “Toujours” at the French ambassador’s residence in Washington a few weeks ago didn’t look like anyone I knew in college. The members, mostly in their 60s, were an accomplished group of women and men with careers in government, law, banking and finance—and possessed an impressive knowledge of French.
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