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LGBT Business Community Finds Online Destinations

gay-business-11081902 Credit: Dreamstime.com

While lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender social media websites are nothing new, social networking sites geared toward LGBT business owners are now getting some traction.

Designed specifically to connect LGBT professionals, dot429 is an online network giving members an opportunity to expand their business connections, help further their career and stay current with the LGBT professional community.

"There are a lot of dating sites, but nothing that addresses the community as business people," said Richard Klein, CEO of dot429. "We are a networking site that operates very similarly to LinkedIn."

Like other social networking sites, dot429 members communicate through profile pages, updates, messages and online introductions. Klein said the site is designed as a resource for the LGBT community, allowing members to interact without the fear of being looked down on for their sexual preference — a potential reality in some of the other professional online communities.

"We want to create a space where people can be proud and honest about who they are," Klein told BusinessNewsDaily.

While dot429 targets business professionals, the recently launched The Daily Hookup has its eye on the consumer side of the business world.

The Daily Hookup is the first daily deal service for gay men that uses curators in New York, Los Angeles, San Francisco and Washington, D.C., to select products for its site.

"We really saw a need (for a social buying site) that was focused just on this market," said John Stubbs, one of the site's founders.

Stubbs said The Daily Hookup is designed to filter all the available online deals and deliver only appropriate opportunities to its members.

"They know this is at least something they would be interested in," Stubbs said of the site members.  "Our deals are of much greater relevance."

By focusing solely on gay men, Stubbs believes The Daily Hookup can be more successful than many other daily deal sites.

"We firmly believe that the future of social buying is going to be targeting specific affinity groups," Stubbs said. "We want to prove that this is a model that will work."

There is also a charitable arm of The Daily Hookup, with 5 percent of each sale being donated to various LGBT charities.


Chad Brooks

Chad Brooks is a Chicago-based freelance writer who has nearly 15 years experience in the media business. A graduate of Indiana University, he spent nearly a decade as a staff reporter for the Daily Herald in suburban Chicago, covering a wide array of topics including, local and state government, crime, the legal system and education. Following his years at the newspaper Chad worked in public relations, helping promote small businesses throughout the U.S. Follow him on Twitter.