5 Ways to Position Your Business for LGBT Weddings

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A few small changes can go a long way to building trust for LGBT weddings

The LGBT wedding market is growing, and growing fast, with new states offering marriage equality rights at a rapid pace. At this time, currently 19 states + D.C. have marriage equality and lawsuits are pending in every single other state.

One consideration that we’re seeing is that many travel and hospitality businesses believe that “love is love” and “we treat all couples equally.” While that may be true (and is truly a lovely sentiment), an element that seems to be missing is that same-sex couples might not know that about your company. How do same-sex couples know that they can trust your business?

LGBT Wedding

Here are five things you can do to let same-sex couples know that they can and should trust your business:

1. Update your marketing materials, contact form, wedding planner worksheet/timeline and contract to remove the terms “bride and groom” and substitute gender-neutral alternatives throughout. In any section on your website devoted to weddings, indicate your support of marriage equality with a statement as simple as, “Our company is a proud supporter of marriage equality.”

2. Identify a marriage equality or LGBT charitable organization in your service area, volunteer with them and if possible make donations and sponsor events.  If you want the business of same-sex couples, then help fight for their rights!

3. Add sexual orientation and gender identity to your corporate (or even small business) anti-discrimination policy if it’s not already there!If you own a small business and don’t have an anti-discrimination policy, then make one.

LGBT Wedding

4. Make a list of LGBT-friendly wedding professionals in your service area that you are 100% confident will treat your clients with respect, and consider this your new LGBT Client Vendor Referral List. Just because your business is LGBT friendly does not mean that all are.

5. Are all of the photos in your portfolio of only brides and grooms paired together?If you don’t have images from same-sex weddings, you can buy stock photos online.Or, find photos that are more inclusive and use some of those instead, such as the bride by herself or the groom by himself, which are more ambiguous.

These simple changes will help same-sex couples know they can trust you – and that will, in turn, benefit not only your business, but the wedding industry as a whole.

LGBT Wedding

For more information on the LGBT wedding market or to schedule a training in your area, visit the Gay Wedding Institute. 

Wedding produced by 14 Stories | Catering: MAX Ultimate Food |Floral: New Leaf Flores | Cake: Dessert Works | Lighting: Ormonde Productions | Stationery: Tony Rizzuto | Venue: Pilgrim Monument and Museum, Provincetown, MA

 eNews June 2014

About the author : Bernadette Smith

Bernadette Smith

Bernadette Smith is founder and president of 14 Stories and the Gay Wedding Institute, and author of the book and the app, Gay Wedding Confidential. Bernadette is also the expert advice blogger on gay weddings for TheKnot's site, Gay.Weddings.com and a blogger for the Huffington Post.

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