Technology and the LGBT Business Community Come Together Like Never Before

It has long been reported on how the LGBT community tends to be early adopters of technology, starting years ago with our embrace of dial-in modem chat rooms (we can be very creative when it comes to meeting online) to where we’re at today with smart phone technology and some of the cool LGBT apps that make the gay & lesbian world just a bit more accessible as well as closer together.  But it is the trend in technology and the LGBT business community that has really come together over the last few years, with one of the highlights of 2011 being the presence of Google at the recent IGLTA Convention in Fort Lauderdale this past week.  With over 500 travel business professionals (gay and gay-friendly) in the audience, Google held everyone’s attention for almost a full hour as they presented on stage a well-crafted presentation on how Google is doing more and more each day to make outreach to and better understand the LGBT community.  With topics ranging from search engine optimization (their forte) to their most recent commercial shown recently during an episode of Glee that presents Google’s embrace of diversity and the LGBT community, their presentation was not only well received but allowed for further conversations to continue during the course of the convention which only solidified the sentiment that the LGBT business community is truly reflective of the early-adopter LGBT community at large and embracing and adopting technology in their business environment.


In fact, the entire educational track of this year’s IGLTA Convention was focused on technology and social media and how companies can leverage both to their competitive advantage.  Was this just a one-time event or is this a trend that will continue to grow in the LGBT business community at large?  I believe the facts speak for themselves.  At the recent LGBT Marketing Conference held by Community Marketing and Pink Banana Media, technology played an even stronger role in the presentations and workshops than ever before.  The strongest post-conference feedback pointed to the research analysis of Community Marketing, the social media presentation by Pink Banana Media and the mobile technology presentation by GayCities.com as the top three presentations attendees felt provided them the best value for their time attending this conference.


It appears the future only looks brighter for this trend… with technology growing in mobile, location-aware devices, the direction is going towards technology companies identifying who their top user base is and the LGBT community is coming out on the top of that list.  In Google’s IGLTA presentation, they pointed out some very specific trends in this area, including the growing use of mobile devices as the primary way people are receiving information in today’s world, to the detriment of the more traditional world of laptop and desktop computers.  In this new mobile world, short-form content is becoming more relevant (status updates and Tweets) and images captured and uploaded from mobile devices into social media are becoming the predominant way photos and video are being taken and shared today.  Using mobile apps such as Grindr to meet other gay men in a local area, or GayCities for checking in to a physical location that is gay or gay-friendly, the LGBT community has had an excellent opportunity to not only prove that certain technologies are viable for the mainstream market, but that they’re also now more versed in the technology that has trained an entire generation of new LGBT users on how the these concepts work, making them more and more ubiquitous in their everyday lives.

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