Private wealth management strategies for the South African gay market

Venter, Bradley Warren
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This research set out to provide recommendations and insights to wealth management organisations that wish to develop a strategy that targets the gay market in South Africa. To achieve this end, the research identified the primary buying behaviours of affluent gay men living in Gauteng, and the key success factors that wealth management organisations should consider when designing and implementing specific strategies for the gay market in South Africa. The strategic success factors were critiqued to ensure that they addressed the identified buying behaviours or take advantage of the buying behaviours for maximum impact. A qualitative research methodology was employed with data being collected from the three population samples using in-depth interviews. The three sampled populations were: Affluent gay males living in Gauteng, wealth managers from leading wealth management organisations in South Africa, and South African media strategists. The data obtained from the interviews was analysed and triangulated in order to identify the said buying behaviours and key success factors. The research results show that affluent, South African gay men living in Gauteng possess very similar buying behaviours to those identified in the literature. The research did, however, uncover several unique buying behaviours as depicted by this market segment in the context of wealth management, including: gay individuals in South Africa are confident consumers with a high social status; gay individuals possess unique wealth management needs; the gay community will boycott homophobic or discriminatory companies or brands, and the gay community will actively seek out companies and brands that specifically target them. Regarding the key success factors for targeting the gay market in South Africa, the research results deviated considerably from the literature with many of the proposed key considerations being unique to this research. The unique success factors identified in this research are as follows: relevant festivals and events iii should be the preferred marketing mediums when targeting the affluent gay market in South Africa; there is merit in wealth management organisations having a dedicated team or individual actively involved in the gay community; wealth management organisations should embark on a brave and aggressive strategy, given the unchartered nature of the gay market in South Africa; a strategy for South Africa’s gay market should, ideally, be reserved for wealth management organisations with established and credible brands, and the strategy for South Africa’s gay market should take into account the strong social networks at play within the gay community. There was a good deal of consistency and overlap between the identified buying behaviours and the proposed strategic success factors. It is felt that this consistency added considerable value to the recommendations for wealth management organisations on how best to develop and implement a strategy for South Africa’s gay market. There has been very little research into the gay market in South Africa, and no research into how best to approach this gay market from the wealth management point of view. Using the recommendations proposed in this research, wealth management organisations can begin to tap into this lucrative, appealing, and previously ignored market segment.
MBA thesis
Wealth management, Management of wealth