#58: Is Authenticity in the Workplace Dead? [Podcast] - Jenn T. Grace—Book Publisher, Speaker, and Author

#58: Is Authenticity in the Workplace Dead? [Podcast]

Welcome to the podcast! Today’s podcast episode is going to be a dive into the archives going back to episode #19. I’ve been very busy and haven’t had a chance to record a brand new podcast, however I do talk about my recent experience speaking at Salem State University which is partially the reason I wasn’t able to record a full new episode. Have a listen because everything in this episode is absolutely applicable to today, as it was when it was first recorded.

After hearing so much chatter about the CEO of Barilla Pasta and his anti-gay remarks, I have my own thoughts on this. I take a different angle than you may expect and share it all in this podcast.

Below are the items mentioned in this episode of the podcast.

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So now let’s just get into the meat of the episode today. And as I’m recording this I have no idea how long this episode is going to be, I’m just going to cover the things that I feel like need to be talked about because of what is happening in the news currently with Barilla pasta and the LGBT outrage, and the scandal that has been occurring. If you follow anything LGBT related, you have heard about this- I’ve seen the Twitter #PastaGate at this point. And there’s a whole slew of controversy around the Barilla CEO, Guido Barilla, who basically said some words that were anti-LGBT, and now the community is up in arms. So rather than me perpetuate a lot of media hype, I really wanted to take a different angle on this. Because in most instances, I am the voice of reason; and I should say- I would say in almost every single instance, I take the stance of the voice of reason. So on my blog if you’re reading something, I try to be very two-sided about things in terms of hearing one person’s point of view, understanding someone else’s perspective, and really just kind of blending the both of those in so you get a really comprehensive standpoint on something, versus me just giving you what my opinion is. I want to make sure that you have a full scope of the debate and the argument, and why something may not sound right and the ways to counteract that. So that is no different with what’s going on with Barilla right now.

And what I want to start off with is talking about two recent blog posts that I’ve written. And they’re very much intertwined with what’s happening right now with what’s going on with Barilla. And just recently I wrote a blog post titled, ‘Marketing to the LGBT Community is not for Everyone.’ And I find this post to be very relevant, and because in this post I just talk about how if you really want to market to the community you need to be authentic. You need to be genuine, you need to be transparent in what you’re doing. You really just need to be doing it for authentic reasons. So if I say to you, “Why do you want to get involved with the LGBT community?” And you respond back to me with, “Because the community has a lot of money, and I want to tap into it.” I’m going to push back on you and say, “I need more than that, that can’t be your only reason, that can’t be your motivating reason.” And of course you’re listening to this podcast because you’re interested in knowing more about the community and how that can help your business. So clearly at the end of the day, I’m here to teach you how to go about this in a way that’s going to produce more revenue and bring you more sales. But you still have to be coming from the right place in order for that to be successful and effective.

So in that blog post I really just highlighted how when I have been talking with people about my online training course, and when I get to the point of asking them what their reasoning is and what their ‘why’ is, and when I find that their ‘why’ is just they want to make money and they really don’t care about the community, that’s like to me saying, “Well I don’t want to waste my time. I don’t want to waste my time with you if that’s the only reason you want to be involved.” So it’s becoming more and more clear over the last three months or so that I’ve really been working on this course, that I’ve identified that marketing to the LGBT community is not for everyone. I think that’s a pretty obvious statement in general, just like you could say marketing to – and insert any community there – you could say is not for everyone. You could say marketing to the stay-at-home mom’s community is not for everyone. Marketing to the Hispanic community is not for everyone. It’s pretty obvious that marketing to the community isn’t for everyone, and that’s okay. And I want you to remember that phrase specifically as we start talking about Barilla, because it is okay. It’s okay if you’re not marketing to the community.

So the next post that I just recently wrote was about dealing with opposition when preparing an LGBT outreach plan. Because regardless of what you’re trying to do; so if you’re trying to market to the community, you’re likely going to have some sort of opposition. It could just be opposition from one employee of yours, it could be opposition from a large part of your customer base. There’s going to be opposition somewhere in what you’re doing; and you need to understand that and you need to know how to counteract that.

So I received an email from someone in Australia who reads my blog. So his question was really around how do you handle when somebody opposes what you’re up to. And the end result, my key takeaway for that question, is you just have to stick true to yourself and be comfortable in what your decision is. So if you happen to have a really high conservative base of customers, like really, really conservative customers who have issues with LGBT folks; and maybe they’re on the fringe so they’re very anti-LGBT. And you still go forward and decide that you’re going to put together an LGBT marketing campaign. You have to understand that you’re going to piss off some of those people and that’s just the way the world works. But if you stick true to your beliefs, so you may have very strong beliefs about the LGBT community that are very positive, you truly want to market to the community for all the right reasons, and you stick to your guns and say, “I’m going to implement this plan because I believe in the community.” Yes, you’re going to piss off some of your conservative customers, and that’s okay because if you’re sticking true to your word, your LGBT customers are going to respect you for it. They’re going to see that they understand that you are pissing off some of your other customers and you’re okay with that because you believe in the community.

So this is something else that I wanted to bring up as we talk about Barilla a little bit. Because ultimately authenticity is key. I named the name of my course ‘How to Authentically Market to the Gay Community’ because I firmly believe that authenticity is the key. And when we’re talking about dealing with opposition, you want to make sure that you’re authentic. When we’re talking about marketing to the LGBT community not being for everyone, the reason why it wouldn’t be for everyone is because not everyone could be authentic in doing so.

So now enter BarillaGate, PastaGate, whatever we want to call it; the scandal that has just kind of thrown people over the edge in terms of being upset. Now I want to take an objective view here, and it was very difficult for me to find information that actually all was cohesive and was the same. So what I’m saying here is that when I was looking for what Guido Barilla actually said, it was very hard to find a lot of sources that had the exact same thing. So just in case you’ve missed all of this happening, I just want to read to you the comments, the anti-gay comments, that Guido Barilla made during an interview on Wednesday, September 25th.

So that is a solid week and a day ago from now, and people are still talking about it and of course I’m now part of that because I’m perpetuating it as well; however I want to take a little bit of a different stance than what you may have already seen. And I was trying to find a credible source to site the exact Italian to English translation. And the source that I have chosen is the Huffington Post. I am a big Huff Post fan, and they have a lot of great information, so I’m hoping – and I cannot guarantee this – but I’m hoping that their translation is the best one out there because the other ones that I have seen have slanted it in a slightly different way, and I’m actually going to read you one of those versions after we go through what I believe to be the true version here.

So in the Huffington Post article, which I will make sure I include a link in the blog post that goes with this podcast, it says- and now this is in response to the radio host asking Guido Barilla why his company does not have ads with gay families. So this is verbatim what the Huffington Post has written down.

“We have a slightly different culture,” Barilla said per a Huffington Post translation of the interview. “For us, the sacral family remains one of the company’s core values. Our family is a traditional family. If gays like our pasta and our advertising, they will eat our pasta. If they don’t like that, they will eat someone else’s pasta. You can’t always please everyone, not to displease anyone. I would not do a commercial with a homosexual family, not for lack of respect towards homosexuals who have the right to do whatever they want without disturbing others, but because I don’t agree with them and I think we want to talk to traditional families. The women are crucial in this.”

And then he goes on to say- let’s see, I’m scrolling down. He goes on to say that he does not agree with gay adoption. So his quote is- and again this is Huffington Post, “I respect same-sex marriage because that concerns people who want to contract marriage. But I absolutely don’t respect adoptions in gay families because that concerns a person who is not the people who decide.”

So now let’s just kind of dissect what we see here and if you’re new to all of this, this is actually going to be better for you because now you’re not tainted by what you’ve already heard. But according to this translation per the Huffington Post, what he’s saying here is if ‘gays like our pasta and our advertising, they will eat our pasta. If they don’t like that, they will eat someone else’s pasta.’ So to me, trying to be the voice of reason here, he’s saying that he is not specifically marketing to the LGBT community. If LGBT folks like his pasta, he welcomes them to come eat it. If they don’t like his pasta, they can go eat someone else’s pasta. That’s the moral of what he’s saying here, but that’s not how he said it. What he did say is, ‘if they don’t like that, they will eat someone else’s pasta.’

I am reading this and I don’t take this in a threatening way. So if you have heard about the PastaGate that’s occurring, a lot of the quotes that have been pulled out are somewhat misquoting him. So- and mind you I am by far not trying to be the devil’s advocate on behalf of a man who’s hated by many right now. Okay, so it just took me a minute, I had to pause- it took me a minute to go find the other quote that I keep seeing.

So I just read you what I believe to be the most accurate Italian to English translation. So the other quote that is thrown around absolutely everywhere, is- and this is in quotes. “We won’t-” and this is saying that this is what Guido said. “We won’t include gays in our ads because we like the traditional family. If gays don’t like it they can always eat another brand of pasta. Everyone is free to do what they want, provided it doesn’t bother anyone else.”

Now this sounds far more threatening. It’s saying if gays don’t like it, they can always eat another brand of pasta. So let’s compare that phrase to the other phrase of, “If gays like our pasta and our advertising, they will eat our pasta. If they don’t like that, they will eat someone else’s pasta.”

So to me, those two sentences mean very different things and are coming across very differently. And you know that I’m in all support of people doing the right thing for the LGBT community and being supporting of the LGBT community; but what I don’t really like is the fact that so many of these major new outlets have picked up this quote- and again, I don’t know if he’s being misquoted here, but it’s an Italian to English translation, so somebody I feel took some liberties upon this translation. So this is making it sound much, much worse than it is.

Now let me go back and continue with the fact that he blatantly said that he doesn’t agree with gay adoption, and as an LGBT parent myself, that’s sad to hear and it’s unfortunate that that’s his point of view, but that’s his point of view. That’s not mine, that’s not yours, that’s his point of view and you can’t- it’s fine. He’s entitled to his own opinion. And he goes on to say that he respects same-sex marriage, but he also talks about women being crucial in this. So he’s making comments that could be offensive to women because he’s basically- he could be implying that women belong in the kitchen, and I have seen that particular idea thrown out there in many different publications that are covering the story. But what I think he probably is meaning by this, is the fact that women tend to be the shoppers of households. So to him in what his idea of what tradition looks like, he’s talking about how he wants to market to women who are more traditionally the shoppers of the family. But while he is making this assumption that women are the shoppers of the family, he is also making an assumption here that if you’re in an LGBT relationship, it must be two men; because clearly he’s not thinking about lesbians in this scenario where you have two women, which according to his comment would be doubly good because now you have two female shoppers, but that’s somewhat beside the point.

But one of the things that I find really interesting is according to Nielsen Research, same-sex partnered households make 16% more shopping trips than heterosexual households, and an average annual spending on consumer packaged goods is 25% higher; and this is in the United States for same-sex partnered households. So same-sex couples are spending on average 25% more than the average US household, and they make 16% more shopping trips to the store than the average household. I find those two numbers to be very, very interesting. And you know I like to bring data back into things where I can.

So let’s just recap for half a second here. So we have the CEO, who is openly talking about why he will not do advertising that includes gay families. He’s against it, for whatever his reasons, he’s against it. He talked about if gays like his ads, then they can eat the pasta, if they don’t like his ads they’re going to eat someone else’s pasta. He also talked about how he doesn’t agree with gay adoption. So he made a lot of comments in this one radio interview, and they have been blown to the sky and back, and a week and a day later they’re still being circulated and blown all over the place.

So the reason I want to talk about all of this, is to say three things; I have three key lessons here. And one of these key lessons is- and we’re going to elaborate on them after I mention them. Is that number one, everyone is entitled to their opinion. Whether you agree with that opinion or not. And I personally will not be buying Barilla pasta, that’s not going to happen; but I’m not going to be a total ass about it. I do not agree with his views, he obviously doesn’t agree with mine, so I don’t need to eat his pasta; it’s very simple. But at the same time he’s entitled to have his opinion, I’m entitled to have my opinion. I think that there needs to be some level of civility somewhere along the line, because if you read some of these articles and then you see like the Facebook comments that are happening underneath these articles, there are some really hate-filled, hurtful things that are being said. And it’s really unfortunate to see all of this happening. So I just want to make sure that we have some level of civility here, because the comments that are going around are really atrocious to see. It’s people saying really terrible things like, ‘faggots must die, they don’t have to eat pasta,’ like really stupid, ignorant things. And then there’s people on the pro-LGBT side saying that he should basically be tried and hung. So it’s like, come on people. Let’s try to be civil here.

And I’ll talk about the role of a CEO once we dive into these points just a little bit deeper, but key lesson number two is that most LGBT people shop with or vote with their dollars. They vote with their wallets. So I do not do business with companies that are not supportive of the LBGT community; it’s quite simple, that’s how I operate. So Barilla is no longer on my list of companies to do business with. They weren’t on it to begin with so it’s not really affecting me in any way, shape or form, but I will make an effort not to purchase anything made by that company. And many, many other LGBT people are not going to as well because this is the way that we can make an impact, just by shopping with our dollars; voting with our wallets. So we want to make sure that that’s something that we continue to do, and that’s a big, key component to the LGBT community, is the fact that the LGBT community has this very wide reach of not only it affecting me, but everybody I know who hears me say, “Don’t buy Barilla,” they’re all going to start thinking about that and it’s going to have some sort of widespread effect that is then indeed going to hurt a company’s bottom line, such as Barilla’s.

Now key lesson number three. So we have key lesson number one, which is everyone is entitled to their opinion. Key lesson number two is that LGBT people vote with their dollars. And then key lesson number three is don’t apologize if you don’t mean it. So going back to authenticity. Hold your ground. So you may have seen, read or watched the apology video, read the apology letter or watched the apology video. Honestly, in my opinion, it would have been better if he just didn’t apologize at all. Because it was so- it lacked the authenticity. All you can tell that he cares about at this point is the fact that he’s offended a great deal of people, and now he doesn’t want his company’s bottom line to hurt him. And it probably wasn’t even his decision to apologize, it was probably made by some board of directors or some communications person somewhere saying, “We need to- we have a PR crisis here, we need to fix this.”

So I just want to read you the letter from Guido Barilla that was dated September 26th. And his letter says, “To all those who have been offended, including the thousands of employees and partners who work with Barilla around the world, I apologize for and regret my insensitive comments. I understand that they were hurtful and they are not a genuine view of my opinion. To clarify, I would like to point out that I have the utmost respect for anyone without distinction of any kind. I have the utmost respect for gay people and for everyone’s right to express themselves. I have the utmost respect for all loving marriages and families. At Barilla we consider it our mission to treat our consumers and partners as our neighbors with love and respect, and to deliver the very best products possible. We take this responsibility seriously, and consider it a core part of who we are as a family-owned company. While I cannot undo recent remarks, I can apologize. To all friends, families, employees and partners that I have hurt or offended, I am deeply sorry.”

Now this letter came out and it’s on their website very prominently on September 26th. So clearly his letter didn’t do him any justice because it required him to come out with a follow-up video the very next day, and I’m just going to have you listen to his video as well, which came out on September 27th.

 

Guido Barilla:             Yesterday I apologized for offending many people around the world. Today, I’m repeating that apology. Through my entire life I always respected every person I’ve met, including gays and their families, without any distinction. I’ve never discriminated against anyone. I’ve heard the countless reactions around the world to my words, have depressed and saddened me. It is clear I have a lot to learn about the lively debate concerning the evolution of the family. In the coming weeks, I pledge to meet representatives of the groups, that best represent the evolution of the family; including those who have been offended by my words.”

 

Jenn T Grace:             So that’s his apology, and going back to my key takeaway number three, is obviously his thoughts and opinions are that he’s not going to market to the LGBT community like we talked about, it’s fine, it’s not for everyone. He talks about the fact that he’s never- in the video he talks about how he’s never discriminated against anyone, and the fact that he goes on a radio show and he talks about how he is against gay adoption; that’s discriminating against people. Whether you’re directly discriminating against someone, you’re discriminating against a group of people. So my point here with his apology is if he didn’t mean it, if he truly holds to his convictions that he is not going to market to the community, he has no desire to market to the community, he wants to just market to women who are the people who are making the purchasing decisions in the household, and he does not believe in gay marriage – those are all perfectly fine beliefs, and they are his beliefs and he’s entitled to them. Just as I am entitled to disagree with them, and not patronize him because of it. I feel like he should not have put out an apology. I think his apologies are actually just making things worse, because now he’s already pissed off the LGBT community, but now he’s pissing off a whole far right version of his customers as well. So actually the Facebook comments that I was talking about before, I’m just going read you a couple of ones. Because this is the type of debate and sadness that is happening because of this man’s words.

So one person writes, “Don’t apologize to those sexual deviants. Stand your ground. God called them an abomination because that is what they are.”

So then someone else writes, “No need for an apology to an insensitive group that refuses to accept the fact that some people do not approve of their choice of lifestyle, and that the same group discriminates against those that have a different view. Mr. Barilla has every right to speak his own mind and express his own opinion, especially as the owner of the company. I am sick of having opposing and views rammed down my throat. Whether I approve of the gay lifestyle is of no importance, just as their opinion of my choice of a heterosexual lifestyle has no meaning to me. I will most definitely go out of my way to support Barilla and use no other pasta products from now on. Interesting how diversity only applies to force their agenda on the rest of us (the vast majority).”

And then the last one I will read. “I will buy more Barilla pasta. I am so sick and tired of homosexuals forcing people to accept their sexual preference. There was a guy with a little mustache and his cronies who used to force people to obey. I don’t see any difference.”

I don’t even know what to say to some of these really, raging, shitty remarks. And so we have somebody comparing the LGBT community to Hitler. We have somebody who is making references to the bible. And then we have somebody in the middle who has a legitimate point of view, but just kind of goes about it the wrong way. So you know he’s calling the LGBT community insensitive and saying how diversity only applies to force their agenda to the rest of us, blah, blah, blah. What I do agree with in his particular statement, is that Mr. Barilla has every right to speak his own mind and express his own opinion, especially as the owner of a company. I 100% agree with that gentleman’s statement. What I think we missed in this whole conversation though, is if we go back to our key takeaways and our key lessons here, is number one everybody is entitled to their opinion, and I fully believe that. And I genuinely understand that not everyone is going to agree with me. I am fine with that, and sometimes people don’t agree with me, sometimes I take that as a badge of honor. And I know that not everyone is going to love and support the LGBT community, just like I know that not everyone will love and support the fact that I am on the left as a democrat; that’s fine, we’re all entitled to disagree on things. I think we just need to be civil about it. And the key here, is that as a CEO of a company that has a global reach such as Barilla, this is where I think things get difficult. Mr. Barilla is 100% entitled to his opinion, there’s no two ways about it. But at the same time, he is the CEO of a very large company that makes a very large amount of money. And in order to not have what is occurring right now, which is like a mass chaos of people refusing to buy Barilla and then other people wanting to patronize them because of his values; that’s- you have a responsibility as the CEO of a company to be looking out for all of your constituents. So clearly in his apology he talks about offending employees of his; so as he’s making these anti-gay remarks, he’s offending his stakeholders, one of his stakeholders being an employee of his. So he clearly wasn’t thinking, and he may have got caught off guard by the question, and like I said he’s entitled to have that view. But as the CEO of a company you should probably be looking out for the best interest of your company, and be looking out for the best interest of the bottom line of your company. Because a PR crisis and a PR nightmare like this is going to take a while to recoup from.

We know that the LGBT community is a very loyal bunch of consumers, and even on my own Facebook page I have seen so many friends taking pictures of Barilla pasta with receipts that they’re going back to the store. I’ve seen people who are not part of the LGBT community commenting on the fact that ‘how could somebody be talking like this and how could we dare buy their products.’ So there’s a lot of conversation happening around this company, and around this particular owner’s point of view. And again, his point of view is fine, he can have his own point of view, I’m not here to singlehandedly change that, nor is the LGBT community. Because no matter how many apologies he comes out with, his views are still probably going to be the same. I don’t think it’s going to make a difference one way or the other. But as a CEO, he has a responsibility that he should be looking out for the best interest of his company, and voicing his opinions around a sensitive topic such as the LGBT community, was probably not the smartest choice for him and I’m sure there are many people within his company right now that are very upset with the debauchery and the chaos that he has caused.

So he’s clearly going to understand that the key takeaway number two very nicely now, is that the LGBT community is not going to buy his products. But at the same time he’s going to have some of these more extreme folks who are anti-LGBT now patronizing him because of it. So who knows how it will all play out in the end, but as of right now I would imagine he probably is seeing some sort of loss in sales. And I’ll be curious to see what happens, because I would love to do a full case study on this PR nightmare and what the actual outcome is in the short term and in the long term. I think it will be really interesting to see how this all plays out.

And then the key takeaway number three is that if you have an opinion on something and you believe in that opinion, don’t apologize for it. So this goes back to actually our topic when we were talking about before about dealing with opposition. Is that if somebody is opposed to you doing LGBT outreach, who cares? That’s their opinion, you have your opinion, and you don’t need to apologize to that person because of it. You’re entitled to do what you want to do. You just want to make sure that whatever your opinion is, you’re not flip-flopping on it. Because I think that that’s what he’s coming across as, is he’s just flip-flopping around and he’s just trying to apologize in a very insincere way to at least just kind of sugar-coat and get people to not be so angry at him. And that’s clearly not a good scenario. And I don’t think that that’s playing to his advantage in any way, shape or form.

So to sum up here, we have a gentleman here who clearly made a big ‘ol faux pas, and made some comments on a public level that has spread globally. And this could happen to any company, on any particular controversial issue. So I’m sure this isn’t the first time we’ve seen a scandal like this; I think it’s definitely one of the first times we’ve seen of such epic proportions, and I’m sure it won’t be the last time that something like this happens too.

But you need to just understand that as someone who is outwardly marketing to the LGBT community or wants to get involved with the LGBT community, that you need to be prepared to- if you have an opinion, keep it to yourself if it’s going to be controversial. You just need to be prepared for the ramifications that could come from something like this. So my key for you is to always be authentic. So if you’re marketing to the LGBT community, be authentic. Do it for the right reasons, do it for your reasons. Of course making sure that impacting your bottom line is part of that reasoning, but just because you want to support the community, that’s very, very important.

So as I talked about in the beginning, I wanted to mention the course a little bit, and I know many of you have seen emails or blog posts or things all talking about the course. And I just want to give you a really high level overview of the intention behind the courses. So the course is called, ‘How to Authentically Market to the Gay Community.’ And I specifically chose to use ‘gay’ instead of ‘LGBT’ in the same way that I chose to name this podcast ‘The Gay Business and Marketing Made Easy Podcast.’ So the authentic piece, as we’ve talked about this entire episode, is really the key component to the course. So it’s essentially a ten step program that is designed to take you from knowing very little about the LGBT community, to becoming really well-versed in it. And then at the end you having a tailored LGBT outreach plan that you can actually execute upon immediately. So when I say an LGBT outreach plan, I’m talking about a marketing plan essentially, of how you are going to get involved in your local community and execute upon the information that you’ve learned throughout the course.

So some of the modules- I call them modules, so those basically are the content broken down, and they’re all about 45 minutes to an hour in length, and it’s very educational. There’s worksheets, there’s templates, there’s terminology guides; there’s all sorts of information designed to help you learn how to communicate with the community, but then also take that knowledge and executing on a plan that’s going to drive revenue to your business.

So the first module we talk about what’s your ‘why,’ and why it matters. And if you’ve been a long-time listener of this podcast, I talk about knowing your ‘why’ all of the time. In module number two we talk about terminology, let’s start with the basics. So literally breaking down what lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender; what all of the four terms mean in addition to many, many other terms.

Then we talk about the LGBT community by the numbers, which is a statistical look at why marketing to the LGBT community is good for your business. And that’s where we talk about brand loyalty and buying power and all that stuff.

Followed by advanced LGBT terminology and symbolism you should know. So understanding words like cisgender or pansexuality or heteronormativity. Just terms that you may or may not know but would be helpful if you did know, especially in conversations with folks in the community.

And then module number five is nuances within the LGBT community, phrases, expressions and stereotypes you shouldn’t be perpetuating.

So those first five modules are all communications based. They’re designed to educate you 100% around what is the best way to communicate with the community, how do you know what your ‘why’ is, things that you should say, things you might not want to say, et cetera. So that’s the first half of the course, is really heavily communications based.

Then the second half of the course, the modules six through ten, are very marketing focused. So starting off with creating an inclusion based marketing plan, tips and tricks for an effective and authentic LGBT marketing outreach plan. So that’s really just talking about the foundational blocks of a plan.

And then module seven is who are you targeting? Eight steps to understanding the demographics and psychographics of your ideal customer. So this is just really helping you identify who you’re marketing to.

And then module eight is leaving your competition in the dust. How to understand your strengths, their weaknesses, and kick their butt while you’re doing it. So this is all about how you can be better than the competition as it relates to the marketing to the community.

Module number nine is building strong LGBT relationships within the community, where to go, what to do, and how to go about doing it. And this is really that tactical outreach plan piece where we are going through step by step of where you should go, what you should do and how to actually go about doing it.

And then of course module ten is kind of a summation of everything that’s called Go Forth and Conquer. Putting together everything you’ve learned and understanding how to measure your success.

So that’s the second half of the course, so the second half is really just getting a marketing plan and outreach plan in order and then going out and executing. What I also have, which is included which is kind of cool, is a bonus module which is how to estimate your potential market size, and in this one I actually go through a real life example of trying to estimate what your potential LGBT market might look like in your area. So where to get the demographic data from, where to find census data, how to break down the statistics. I give you a math equation to help you figure it all out. And that’s just a bonus in there just to give you a sense of what your potential reach could be, based on your given area.

So that really just sums up the course right there for you. So it’s very heavily communications and marketing based, and it’s pretty frickin’ amazing. I honestly truly believe that if this course were available in 2006 when I started marketing to the LGBT community, it would have saved years and years off of my learning curve; and that’s really how I designed it. I designed it to be very comprehensive to allow you to not have to go down and hit some of these roadblocks and pitfalls that I’ve had to in the past. I really just took my last seven years of knowledge and just wrapped it all up into one course that will help you save a ton of time and generate a lot of money from marketing to the community in the authentic way.

So I just wanted to just give you a real quick overview of what the course really entails. So before I let you go, I do want to make sure that we hear from the sponsors of the podcast, the Human Performance Academy.

Alright, that was Mike Kaiser from the Human Performance Academy. I always love hearing from them. And yeah, so that was today’s episode, I hope you’ve enjoyed learning a little bit more about why authenticity is key in marketing to the LGBT community. And have learned maybe a couple of things that you should not do, based on what Barilla has been doing. And so I have one last request of you, is if you liked what you have heard today, I would love for you to tell a friend. So if you head over to the website to www.JennTGrace.com/LOVE that will populate a tweet that will go out and just suggest that people come on over and check out the podcast. I’m all about educating as many people as I can, so if you know of anyone who would benefit from this information, please, please send them my way.

And then finally, I just want to make sure that you know that this is episode number 19, so please head over to the website at www.JennTGrace.com/019 and that will list the links of all of the information that we talked about in today’s podcast.

So yeah, there you have it. There’s all she wrote for episode number 19 of the podcast. As always, I hope you enjoyed the show and I will talk to you next time.

About Jenn T. Grace

Jenn T. Grace (she/her/hers) is an award-winning author and founder and CEO of Publish Your Purpose (PYP), the acclaimed hybrid publisher of non-fiction books. Jenn has published 100+ books written by thought leaders, visionaries, and entrepreneurs who are striving to make a difference. Jenn T. Grace’s work elevates and amplifies the voices of others—especially marginalized groups who are regularly excluded from traditional publishing.

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