LGBTQ+ creators are speaking out on brands’ influencer marketing tactics during Pride Month. From overloading followers with LGBTQ+ messaging, to brands only engaging with queer creators in June, queer influencers often find themselves balancing the substantial financial gain the month brings with the rainbow-washing that’s seeped its way into the creator economy.
Cyrus Veyssi, a nonbinary content creator known for their comedic posts, said they can tell how serious a brand is about Pride Month based on when the company reaches out to partner. In the case of shoe brand Dolce Vita, they contacted Veyssi early this year to discuss Pride Month, and they note that the brand is a “case study in an authentic campaign.” But Veyssi has found a bulk of requests didn’t start coming in until the end of May, noting they received 15 to 20 inquiries from May 25 through June 2, and they are still getting offers. “That can feel like an afterthought,” Veyssi said.
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Veyssi advises brands to initiate outreach with something personal or that shows a brand is familiar with their content. Often, this doesn’t happen.
TikToker Eric Sedeño, a gay creator who boasts 759,000 followers, poked fun at the language brands used to reach out to him for Pride campaigns, citing his “vivacious personality” and loving the way he “sparkles.”