16 LGBTQ+ Indie brands to support during pride month
02 Jun 2021 · 6 min read
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Pride month is a time to celebrate and remember those who have continued to work for equal opportunity and justice for LGBTQ+ individuals. When uplifting these communities and preparing for pride celebrations this year, consider buying from queer-owned businesses and brands so you can directly support the LGBTQ+ community. These businesses are at the forefront of providing accessible, inclusive clothing for all identifying persons and many contribute portions of their proceeds to charities benefiting the LGBTQ+ community.
Small businesses are a great place to support individuals and see effective influencer marketing tactics and these “indie” brands are no exception. When partnering with LGBTQ+ influencers and celebrities, these brands are finding phenomenal growth and engagement as well.
Using the Tagger platform’s engagement, growth, and mentions toggles, we found these 16 LGBTQ+ Indie Clothing brands to support during Pride Month
Stuzo Clothing (@stuzoclothing) - Stuzo Clothing is a gender-free clothing company designed by Stoney Michelli Love to invoke thought and emotion. Celebrity fans Lena Waithe, Ruby Rose, and Gina Yashere (who has mentioned the brand over 100 times on Instagram) have all flaunted the brand’s clothing. With 1.2k individual mentions, the brand receives regular recognition from Influencers of all different audience sizes.
WILDFANG (@Wearewildfang) - Started in Portland, Oregon, WILDFANG’s mission to rethink gender norms and how they show up in fashion is not only helping to break stigmas in the fashion industry but also serves a philanthropic purpose. WILDFANG has donated over 500k to charity since its’ beginning, all the while growing even bigger brand awareness, reach, and customer loyalty.
At first glance, WILDFANG’s Tagger metrics show a slight decline in Twitter followers, a metric surprising when the brand’s other social media have such a strong growth rate. Simultaneously, the brand’s number of retweets has spiked. Despite their slight decline in Twitter growth, the brand is still tracking phenomenal engagement and impression metrics showing that growth isn’t the only stat you should depend on for effective influencer marketing!
DapperBoi (@dapperboi) - An everyday, gender-neutral clothing line for androgynous individuals of all body types, DapperBoi was started by the wife-and-wife duo Vicky and Charisse Pasche with just a Kickstarter. The brand has since tracked steady growth and in the last year, their Instagram has gained over 7k followers. Featured in publications such as Forbes and Entrepreneur Magazine, the brand has also pivoted some of its social media strategies to TikTok, where they have an audience of almost 30k built in the last ten months.
TomboyX (@tomboyc) - Started so owners Fran and Naomi could make underwear that fit who they are rather than what society tells them to be, TomboyX has since expanded their product lines to include more clothing, super-soft pajamas, and underwear for any body type. The brand’s social media platforms all possess steady growth rates and high engagement as well- over 3.5k organic mentions are recorded across their different platforms. In addition, sponsored mentions are ringing in at 1k, featuring collaborations with fashion models and actual customers.
SUAYSewShop (@suaysewshop) - A 100% vertical sewing and production shop founded by Lindsay Rose Medoff, SUAY Sew Shop creates clothing from a combination of post-consumer waste, deadstock, and domestically, organically grown fibers. The brand is making waves in the clothing community for its eco-friendliness and unique clothing repair service. The brand’s social media is also making waves, growing from 27k to 38.5k since January 2021. However, with only 199 individual mentions, the brand has fewer mentions from larger-audience influencers and celebrities like Lucy Dacus, Mark Ruffalo, and Josh Radnor.
Bianca Designs (@biancadesigns) - Founded by Bianca Negron, Bianca Designs is a small, independent shop featuring pins, creative goods, and other clothing. AT 13.6k followers, Bianca Designs has slowly but surely grown on all platforms, with engagement rates exceeding the Tagger benchmarks- Her engagement rates are hovering around 3-4% on all posts. The brand’s smaller audience allows for a more fine-tuned audience experience that results in these higher engagement rates.
Humankind (@humankindswim) - A swimwear line designed for any body type, Humankind has been very active on social media with audiences in the past. With giveaways and the hashtag #WeAreHumankind, the brand can interact much more closely with its audiences. The brand’s video engagement is tracking at more than double the Tagger benchmark, showing their apparent expertise for this kind of social content. The brand has nearly 7k TikTok followers and over 277k TikTok likes, certainly showing another successful side of the brand’s video content.
Telfar (@telfarglobal) - With humble beginnings after being started at Pace University by student Telfar Clemens, the unisex brand has swept the nation with its signature monogram bag. Favored by celebrities Solange Knowles and Indya Moore, our metrics show nearly 5k others who have mentioned the brand on social media. Their growth shows no signs of slowing as the brand continues to track phenomenal engagement despite their massive audience. Engagement rates in the 3-4% range are typical of the brand’s Instagram but their Twitter is more impressive, featuring a 7% engagement rate on photos.
Kirrin Finch (@kirrinfinch) - Designed by Laura Moffatt and Kelly Sanders Moffatt, Kirrin Finch creates menswear-inspired apparel designed to fit a range of female and non-binary bodies. Though the brand’s growth is already impressive, their creativity in influencer marketing truly highlights their audience and customers. With quarterly reposts of influencers and customers using the #MyKirrinFinch hashtag, the brand regularly puts their audience on display. This tactic has grabbed engagement for these specific posts as audiences see themselves in the brand’s posts. Nearly 130 individual mentions are slowly becoming more frequent, sending Kirrin Finch on a path towards growth.
Flavnt Streetwear (@flavnt_stretwear) - Streetwear brand Flavnt (pronounced ‘flaunt’) was created with the mission to promote confidence and pride among the LGBTQ+ community and anyone who supports them. Flavnt is the creator of the 1st range of nude binders and has donated over 30k for gender-confirming surgeries. Since last May, the brand’s Instagram has grown by 6k and their engagements have tracked at 300-400 per post.
Passionfruit (@shop_passionfruit) - Featured in Vice, BuzzFeed, and even Marth Stewart, Passionfruit clothing and accessories are curated, produced, and designed by LGBTQ+ creators. Passionfruit’s engagement has doubled as recently as April 2021, contributing to their also recent growth spike.
Otherwild (@otherwild) - Otherwild is a store, design studio, and event space created by Rachel Berks to highlight items made with care by individuals. Their store’s social media does a phenomenal job of bringing attention to their creators with over 4k mentions from Otherwild’s social media. These mentions have had a potential reach of almost 650,000 in recent months, which shows the power of a single mention from individual influencers!
gc2b (@gc2b) - The first gender-affirming apparel brand designed for and by trans men, gc2b has worked closely with trans men macro-influencers. Many of these collaborations are in the form of free giveaways with high engagement rates. Since January 2021, the brand has grown by almost 30k followers and received 100+ mentions.
The Phluid Project (@thefluidproject) - The Phluid Project is a gender-free fashion brand founded by Rob Garrett Smith. Their mission to challenge old traditions and embrace self-expression is seen in their clothing line and social media, which serves as a community, activism, and education page. Their Instagram account has grown by 11k in the last six months, boosted by their collaborations with LGBTQ+ influencers. Their mentions also feature a partnership with L period care and Scent Beauty, highlighting how multi-brand influencer marketing can help encourage growth.
Rebirth Garments (@rebirthgarments) - Founded by Sky Cubacub, Rebirth Garments provides gender non-conforming wearables and accessories for people on the full spectrum of gender, size, and ability. Almost 700 individual mentions feature the brand for an average of 15,000 potential reaches per mention.
Bowtie Behavior (@bowtie_behavior) - With just 2.8k followers, Bowtie Behavior’s social media journey may only be beginning to blossom, but the brand has already been featured all over the internet. Buzzfeed, Huffington Post, and Verizon Media have all published articles on the female-owned handmade bowtie company. In addition, the brand has collaborated with The Phluid Project and other brands while working with micro-influencers as well.
One of the most natural ways to monetize an NIL for student-athletes is to work as an influencer. The big question is, how will this translate into real earnings? This case study explores the answer.
How much could college athletes who monetize their NIL stand to earn? Case Study: Arizona Division I Athletes
_The following is a guest post from Kristen Klepac, a Content Marketing Specialist with Green Flag Digital._
In the United States, college sports are a big deal. The industry generates billions in revenue through ticket sales, merchandise, and television deals, and more. As of July 1, 2021, the NCAA finally announced they are opening the opportunity to tap into this revenue to the stars of the show. Now, [student-athletes can monetize their NIL](https://www.taggermedia.com/blog/college-athletes-become-influencers-NIL-ruling) in order to carve out their own earnings.
**Current college students are primarily of the Gen Z generation, a digital-savvy group that hardly understands a world where social media didn’t exist.** So, one of the most natural ways to monetize an NIL for today’s student-athletes is to work as an influencer or utilize social accounts to generate a following. The real question is, how will this translate into real earnings for those who’d like to tap into this revenue stream?
Whether students partner with big brands (like [Dr. Pepper](https://www.si.com/college/2021/08/11/clemsons-dj-uiagalelei-to-profit-from-nil-in-dr-pepper-ad-campaign)) or become micro-influencers, the potential to earn is real. It can be difficult to estimate exactly how much money will actually end up in the hands of the student-athlete. One way to predicting which student-athletes may stand to gain the most may start with a simple look at their existing social accounts.
Taking this method, the team at BetArizona has put together a [comprehensive case study](https://www.betarizona.com/news/top-25-arizona-college-athletes-by-sponsorship-earnings-potential) to uncover which of Arizona’s Division 1 athletes may benefit the most from monetizing their NIL. First, they added up Twitter, Instagram, and TikTok followings of every player across a total of 23 sports for the four Arizona Division 1 schools. To estimate earning potential, a formula of $0.80 per follower per year was used to predict potential revenue.
# Which Arizona Universities and Sports Offer the Best Earning Opportunity for Student-Athletes?
According to the study from BetArizona, Men’s Basketball offers by far the optimal earning opportunity. Whereas student-athletes attending Arizona State University in Tempe have higher average earnings per player than any of the other Division 1 schools.
Women sports on the other hand offer more fair and consistent earning opportunities across the board. In fact, the study makes a special effort to emphasize that even though women often receive less coverage on traditional media, socials tell a different story.
On average, women have 30% fewer social media followers than men. However, a large part of men’s followers are dedicated to basketball and there are more men athletes than women.
On the other hand, women’s followings are more evenly distributed. Plus, if you look closely at a subsection such as softball/baseball, the Arizona women’s softball teams average nearly 6,000 followers per player while men’s baseball players have an average of only 2,200 followers.
# Top 25 Potential Earners in Arizona College Athletics
It may come as no surprise to see men’s basketball players land in the top 4 spots for top potential earners. Defying this is female soccer player Nicole Soto snatching the number 5 spot.
It becomes even more interesting when you actually look at the individual profiles of these student-athletes. For example, #1 Marcus Bagley’s annual earning potential far supersedes the rest with an estimated $287,536. Influencers who are Instastars will be shocked at this: This ASU basketball star has a total of 5 posts on his [Instagram](https://www.instagram.com/marcus/?hl=en) account and well over 300K followers. Imagine the potential to earn if he simply started posting regularly on this account!
Dalen Terry of UA has recently announced a deal to [partner with a local chicken and waffle chain](https://tucson.com/sports/arizonawildcats/basketball/pascoe/arizona-guard-dalen-terry-enters-nil-arrangement-with-chicken-and-waffle-chain/article_55848194-fc99-11eb-9ff8-232d6c56d7af.html) in Arizona. Coming in 2nd in this ranking with an estimated annual earning potential of $82,068, it looks like Dalen is geared up to take advantage of the new NIL opportunity.
Other’s landing in the top ten include basketball stars such as Luther Muhammed (ASU), Aidan Igiehon (GCU), and Holland Woods (GCU). Football players such as Jayden Daniels (ASU), Jaden Mitchell (UA), and Johnny Wilson (ASU) show up in the bottom half of the top ten.
It’s worth noting that across the list of the top 25 the primary source of followers comes from combinations of Twitter and Instagram, but Jaden Mitchell is one of the few whose [TikTok account](https://www.tiktok.com/@jadenmitch_) following launches him up to the #8 spot.
Of the 5 total women in the list, 2 land in the top 10 list at number five (Nicole Soto) and six, Aari McDonald of the UA women’s basketball team.
_Guest Author Kristen Klepac is a Content Marketing Specialist with Green Flag Digital; she loves brainstorming creative and data-focused content and has an affinity for uncovering the best publishers for client projects, you can see some of these projects_ [_here_](https://www.greenflagdigital.com/portfolio/)_. She’s based in France where she’s finally getting the hang of la langue française._
**_Want to see how Tagger helps marketers discover high-value influencers who are perfect for their campaigns?_** [**_Schedule a demo of our platform here._**](http://www.taggermedia.com/request-demo/)
Social media followers carry a lot of power, and their loyalty (or lack thereof) could directly affect influencers' paychecks.
The Great Unfollowing: What "Bachelor in Paradise’s" Recent Scandal Tells Us About Influencer Marketing
Bachelor Nation is no stranger to scandal as the last year has proven- between Chris Harrison’s clumsy exit and scrutiny surrounding the show’s lack of diversity, this year’s season of _Bachelor in Paradise_ was off to a pretty calm start. That calm was short-lived, as this week’s double feature episodes caught scandal on camera that saw ripples on social media. Accidentally revealed on-air, contestants [Brendan Morais](https://www.instagram.com/brendanmorais/?hl=en) (@brendanmorais) and [Pieper James](https://www.instagram.com/pieper_james/?hl=en) (@pieper_james) indicated they were already a couple and were only on the show to gain followers on social media.
Though Bachelor Nation fans watched in shock as the lie unraveled, Brendan and Pieper’s shock was likely more as their plan had the opposite effect. Since the episodes aired on September 6th and 7th, **Morais has lost almost 23.5% of his followers.**
With Morais losing nearly a quarter of his followers, **James was not far behind at a loss of almost 10%.** These percentages will likely increase as Bachelor Nation fans tweet and post on all platforms, encouraging others to unfollow.
Brendan was one of the first contestants on the show, as well as an early "fan favorite", and it wasn’t too difficult for him to stay on for three weeks until Pieper joined. In the meantime, Brendan coupled up with [Natasha Parker](https://www.instagram.com/natashaparker/?hl=en) (@natashaparker), a relationship that by his own admission turned out to be a ploy to ensure Brendan remained on the beach until Pieper arrived. **As the story went viral on social media, fans of the show began unfollowing the disgraced couple and instead flocked to Natasha’s social platforms.**
**Natasha has seen a whopping 203% growth rate, up from 173.9k on September 5th to 430.6k by the 13th**. If Natasha continues to be a fan favorite, this growth will undoubtedly continue.
Dubbed by social media as “The Great Unfollowing,” this scandal tells us more about influencer marketing than meets the eye. As followers continue to turn away from Brendan and Pieper in favor of Natasha, it’s a reminder that being an influencer is not just about getting followers- you have to be able to keep them as well. Authenticity and honesty go a long way, and followers who might suspect an influencer as being dishonest will likely unfollow.
Dave Neal (@dnealz), podcaster and host of the viral Youtube show “Bachelor Nation News,” has already covered the topic in over five videos with as many as 69k views.
“The faster you grow an audience, the quicker it can be taken away. Just be as genuine as possible on your platforms and don’t take anyone who ‘believes in you’ for granted,” Neal said. The lesson to be learned here for influencers is that **social media followers carry a lot of power, and their loyalty (or lack thereof) could directly affect your paycheck.**
Although follower counts shouldn’t be the only metric brands look at when hiring influencers, a drastic downward spike in followers might be indicative of something more concerning. It’s worth making sure your influencers are authentic with their followers to avoid partnering with someone receiving negative backlash. Using a platform could help ensure your influencers’ followers are authentic, engaged, and loyal over time.
While Brendan and Pieper may still have some influencer campaigns down their social media pipeline, those opportunities have likely dwindled since these episodes. In contrast, Natasha’s influence has undoubtedly risen, leading to a greater likelihood of influencer opportunities. Featuring active partnerships with Risata Wines, Sweaty Betty, and Amazon, Parker’s new batch of dedicated followers makes her platform look a whole lot more enticing for interested brands.
**If you'd like to see how Tagger's platform quickly and efficiently finds the perfect influencers and analyzes social media data for every need and category, _**[**_schedule a live demo_**](http://www.taggermedia.com/request-demo)**_; we're happy to show you how we do it!_**
Data-based insights for how brands can use social media to optimize their marketing strategy for the 2021 Holiday Season.
Maximize your 2021 Holiday marketing ROI with data based insights and influencer marketing
Planning for the 2021 holiday shopping season has many marketers looking to social media data for insights. After the pandemic, one thing is certain: **the way people shop has changed forever with more and more business being done exclusively online.**
There are many things to consider about these new consumer habits including seeking vs. browsing, generational differences, and allowing time for exchanges and delivery challenges.
Truly smart marketers will take into account both changes in customer behavior as well as overall industry trends. **Here are some data-based insights for how brands can optimize their marketing strategy for the 2021 Holiday Season.**
### **Changes in consumer behavior; past data informs future projections**
Perhaps the biggest overall change in how we shop in a post-pandemic world isn’t just the increased share of online purchases versus in-person shopping, but also the thought process of how we make a purchase decision in the first place.
Whenever people want to make a decision about anything these days, they go to the web to do research first, and holiday gift giving is no exception. **Because of the emphasis on research, consumers have largely adopted a “seeking” versus “browsing” shopping strategy.**
Before the pandemic, it was about a 50-50 split of people making holiday purchases online and going into brick and mortar stores to browse for gifts. Now, most, if not all, consumers are actively doing research online to look for a specific item or product that meets their needs instead of browsing at a store and making an impulse purchase.
### **So how does this affect marketers in 2021? Adjust your strategy to reach your ideal customers through influencers whose opinions they already trust**.
Influencer partnerships are one of the best ways to make reaching your target audience feel personal. The consumer has already actively chosen to follow that account, and therefore trusts what that creator has to say. If an influencer gives your product a good review or does a demonstration that appeals to the customer, it feels like organic research rather than targeted advertising.
### **Generational differences that affect the likelihood of purchase**
An often overlooked aspect of influencer marketing is the fact that you’re not just trying to reach the person your product appeals to, but rather, you need to consider who’s actually doing the purchasing. For example, you might want to sell a t-shirt to an 18-year-old Gen Z’er who cares about eco friendly fashion, but if their mom is the one buying the shirt as a holiday gift, different types of content and different purchasing experiences will appeal to her versus to her child.
**To make this insight work for you, make sure you work with influencers to talk about both the product _and_ the purchasing experience.** Offer a unique discount or free shipping code (this helps with tracking ROI as well!), and explain the return policy. When it comes to holiday shopping, ease of returns and exchanges is a major factor in whether or not a consumer will actually hit “buy now” or just abandon their cart.
### **It’s all in the timing**
Over the past decade, holiday marketing campaigns have started easier and earlier with each passing year. This is because with each year that goes by, more people are shopping online versus in store, and when you shop online you need to account for estimated delivery dates delays.
**Because consumers want that buffer time to receive, evaluate, and potentially return or exchange items, it’s always a good idea to start your holiday marketing as soon as October with the hardest push coming in November.** Those weeks are the perfect window of time to maximize your share of voice in the marketplace and secure early bird purchases.
To capitalize on this insight, use a technology tool like Tagger to hone in on influencers who are currently reaching your target audiences and partner with them now. If you want even more bang for your buck, consider offering them a long term partnership! Brands that work with influencers on a long-term basis show higher ROI than one-off creator campaigns. This is due in large part to an increased feeling of “know, like, trust”; repetition is recognition, and recognition leads to familiarity and trust!
### **People are looking for deals and discounts on social media, now more than ever**
Another reason people like to shop online versus IRL is because of coupons and deals. People are more likely to spend more than they originally intended in order to get free shipping or choose your product over another because of a discount code. One of the first places consumers look for discount codes? Their favorite influencers.
Someone interested in cookware will know they can get discount codes from their favorite food blogger because they’ve followed her for a long time and have seen her talking about cookware brands in the past. Someone looking for a specific fashion item will go to their trusted fashion influencers to watch their try-ons and reviews. Whatever the vertical, people know influencers are offering deals and are likely to seek them out.
### Influencers are the key to holiday 2021 success
If you'd like to learn more about how Tagger helps global brands and agencies identify which influencers will drive the highest ROI for their campaigns, be sure to check out [our product page](http://www.taggermedia.com/product) and [schedule a demo](http://www.taggermedia.com/request-demo)!