By Paul Pannone
Last week, New York joined Connecticut, Iowa, Massachusetts, New Hampshire, Vermont and the District of Columbia allowing same-sex marriage and Delaware, Hawaii, Illinois, New Jersey approving of civil unions. After years of struggle addition of a major market state like New York drew attention of many resistors that were torn as to whether a market to sell to would emerge.
With New York passing the right for Gay and Lesbians to marry, indecisive vendors are now fighting the clock to tap into the market.
Renowned wedding and travel expert, Jacqueline Johnson, identified the up and coming market over a year ago. Johnson updated her view writing, “According to renowned Forrester Research, this market of more than 7 million generates more than $41 Billion per year on their personal and leisure travel. They also tend to be more engaged with online travel booking than straight travelers. In comparison to the rest of the travel population, the incidence of rental cars and flights is much greater, but to successfully sell to LGBT travelers you must understand that your success depends on offering the right travel content – in the right way,” on her blog.
“Ignoring this emerging market would be a huge mistake for any vendor,” Johnson told eWN over a year ago. “As I write in my latest post, getting your content right is the most important element in developing a successful LGBT leisure travel business strategy. It is more important than social media, more important than mobile and more important than marketing. Why, because next to content, everything else is window dressing. I truly believe that to be true,” she told eWedNewz.
Suppliers like Paul Eilenberg are offering items made specifically for the gay community. Many others say they’re developing product specific items that will become available in time for same-sex weddings, set to begin next month.
Marcinho Savant, executive planner for the wedding planning company savvyplanners.com, said he’s already received 127 email inquiries since the bill’s passage Friday. He announced Tuesday that in light of the increase in interest, he planned to open a new New York City office this week, on Lexington Avenue in Midtown.
Savant told eWedNewz,”We’ve fought for this moment for so long and now that it’s finally happening, we’re taking every measure to insure all levels of credibility and honesty are met.” Savant told eWedNewz he’s taking a pragmatic approach to offering same-sex products while still working under the confines of a society that will need time to adapt to the changes. When eWNz pointed out the changes are now called “law” he responded by saying,” I’m still going to tread carefully, just to make sure.”