Matt Skallerud is the President of Pink Banana Media. He has been in the LGBTQ online marketing world for almost 25 years, having started GayWired.com in 1995. He now helps companies navigate online campaigns and social media amongst other marketing channels. He will also help you navigate your hypothetical scenarios in a digital world. Let’s see what advice we can rattle from him.
I’ve recently been elected the first openly gay mayor of a southern city populated almost exclusively by lesbians and civil war re-enactors. Should we move our Pride festivities from June to a less scorching time of the year?
Matt: Yes, for a variety of reasons. First, having it outside of June allows more people to enjoy your Pride without being distracted and having to choose from all the others happenings in June. Second, weather is a huge factor. That’s why Phoenix and Palm Springs both have their Pride festivals outside of the summer months.
As one of the largest manufacturers of personal lubricants in North America, is it smart business for my company to endorse any LGBTQ presidential candidates in 2020’s elections?
Matt: Corporate business and taking a political stand don’t always mix. I would say in this case, the personal lubricant company should stay out of politics and political endorsements. In 2019, it’s just too divisive.
Last week, I saw two partners from a local business throw drinks in each other’s faces over whether the pride flag needs more colors for inclusivity. Should we support such changes and what do you think those drinks were?
Matt: We should always be open to evolution and change, including some of what we think of as traditions in the LGBTQ community and movement. Remember when it used to be GLBT? One drink was a cosmo, as a throwback to a simpler time, and the other was a Tito’s vodka-soda, the gay man’s drink of choice.
We should always be open to evolution and change, including some of what we think of as traditions in the LGBTQ community and movement. Remember when it used to be GLBT?
I have $100 left to pour into my marketing campaign for my Bear Weekend event. Should I spend it on titillating Facebook ads or branding several dozen teddy bears to distribute on the street?
Matt: All depends on where you can most efficiently reach the maximum number of bears who could actually attend your event. If you’re in Big Bear, CA and you’re on the street at the last minute trying to identify the gay bears in the crowd to encourage them to come to your event, guess what? They’re already coming. But if you’re targeting gay bears in LA or Orange County on Facebook, encouraging them to come up for the weekend, you’re probably doing a more effective job at spending that $100.
I’ve heard that the color green on a magazine cover is a tough sell. Should we put our ginger cover boy in a green speedo or not?
Matt: Yes, for Irish-focused campaigns or theme. It’ll match their flag well.
I want to use gay adult entertainers to be social media influencers for my line of organic honey products. Is it better to have them shirtless or fully clothed in my online campaigns?
Matt: If you’re going for adult entertainers, you’re tapping into their audience, who have already ascertained they like to see [adult entertainers] with as little clothing as possible.
I’m sitting behind a major ad-buy client I want to land on a flight to Boston. He’s clearly inebriated. How should I approach?
Matt: I’d steer clear. There are too many unknowns that can work against you on this. If you do end up schmoozing the hell out of this potential client, he may never even remember what you two said to each other. Plus, he may be potentially embarrassed if you remind him of this encounter.
Bananas have long been co-opted by the gay community to great marketing success. What fruit can our non-binary community use to similar results?
How did we get tangled up with unicorns as our de facto mascot as opposed to anteaters or sloths?
Matt: They’re magical beings with superpowers, just like how we sometimes perceive ourselves.