Gay Consumers as a nich market

Changing representations of male homosexuality in German advertisements from 2000 to the present

Authors: Elke Schuch and Sasha Sistenich

Citation

Schuch, E. & Sistenich, S. (2020). Gay Consumers as a nich market: Changing representations of male homosexuality in German advertisements from 2000 to the present. Journal of Creative Industries and Cultural Studies–JOCIS5 (1), 50–67.

Abstract

Over the last twenty years, advertising has recognized a new market segment: gay consumers now constitute a niche market which is large and affluent enough to deserve more media and marketing attention. Drawing on gender and queer studies, the article will analyse the representation of male homosexuality in German advertisements will identify socioeconomic reasons for the changing representations of homosexuality in German society – bearing in mind that advertisements featuring homosexuality still tend to provoke controversial reactions in Germany, even though gay marriage was permitted in October 2017. While at the beginning of the 21st century, homosexuality was still represented in a covert way in subsequent years these media portrayals changed considerably: the representation of male homosexuality is now openly supported by well-known brands. Moreover, in recent advertising, signs and symbols are used which openly identify the portrayed men as homosexuals, while at the same highlighting the `naturalness ́ of homosexuality and gay relationships.

Keywords

Homosexuality, advertisement, stereotypes, gender, gay advertisement, gay marketing, perception and reproduction of stereotypes, German advertisement, gender stereotypes.