Contact: David Paisley 415-437-3800 ext 102

New Survey of Same-Sex Couples
Looks at Wedding and Engagement Trends 


San Francisco, CA, November 12, 2013

Community Marketing & Insights (CMI), a lesbian, gay, bisexual, and transgender (LGBT) consumer research company today released the results of a survey entitled “Same-Sex Couples: Weddings and Engagements.” Produced in partnership with The Gay Wedding Institute, the survey of over 900 couples found interesting and surprising trends as same-sex couples plan their weddings in the backdrop of dramatic gains in marriage equality. The recent Supreme Court decision striking down part of the Defense of Marriage Act and access to marriage rights in 14 states (at the time of publication) have led to an ever-increasing number of couples planning weddings.

“This breakthrough study is the widest-reaching ever of same-sex couples, and reflects the diversity of our community – from those who eloped at City Hall to those who had a more formal celebration,” said David Paisley, Senior Research Director at CMI.  “This timely survey gives the wedding industry and the public some fascinating insights into how engagement and marriage are viewed by same-sex couples,” Paisley continued.

“We combined the knowledge of an LGBT research organization with a wedding planning company, and can now answer many questions about what really happens when LGBTs plan a wedding. From the traditions that were followed (or not), resources that couples used to find wedding vendors, the size of their wedding party, honeymoons, and much more, we have a snapshot of the landscape in a quickly growing part of the wedding industry as more and more couples marry across the U.S. and around the world,” concluded Paisley.

“What we learned is fascinating and would be of interest to anyone involved in the wedding industry,” said Bernadette Coveney Smith, President of The Gay Wedding Institute, who partnered with CMI on the survey. “By and large, same-sex couples are quite non-traditional, especially the gay grooms,” said Coveney Smith. “We learned that the terms “husband” and “wife” haven’t quite caught on within much of our community, and how important it is for wedding professionals to have inclusive language and photos in their marketing materials. This information is not only helpful to my colleagues in the wedding industry but to anyone interested in the cultural change happening now that same-sex couples can marry in 14 states, with more to come, ” concluded Coveney Smith.

The survey of 916 couples was gathered from across the country, with 57% already married 19% in domestic partnership, 18% engaged and 5% in a civil union.

Other major findings in the survey include:

Join a free webinar on “Same-Sex Couples: Weddings and Engagements” Wednesday, November 20 at 2:00pm EST. Register with this link:

Request a complimentary copy of the “Same-Sex Couples: Weddings and Engagements” report and other CMI research with this link:

For more information about the survey please contact David Paisley at

The Community Marketing & Insights team has been conducting LGBT consumer research for 20 years. Our methodologies include online surveys, focus groups, IDIs, MROCs, and advisory boards in North America, Europe, Latin America, Australia and Asia. Industry leaders around the world depend on CMI’s LGBT research and analysis as a basis for feasibility evaluations, positioning, economic impact, ad creative and brand testing, informed forecasting, measurable marketing planning and assessment of return on investment.

CMI’s clients span a wide spectrum of industries. Custom CMI studies have been produced for Wells Fargo Bank, Aetna Insurance, Gilead Pharmaceuticals, Target Brands, Johnson & Johnson, E&J Gallo Wineries, Prudential Financial, Hyatt Hotels, MetLife, WNBA, Esurance, Travelocity, Absolut Vodka, American Cancer Society, Greater Fort Lauderdale CVB, Japan National Tourism Organization, The U.S. Census and numerous other corporations and organizations across North America and around the world. CMI’s research has been published in the New York Times, Wall Street Journal, Forbes, USA Today, Washington Post, Chicago Tribune, Los Angeles Times, Miami Herald, Advertising Week, CBS News, NPR, Associated Press and many other international, national and regional media.

The Gay Wedding Institute is the world’s first LGBT wedding training academy.  Bernadette Coveney Smith is founder and president and the nation’s leading gay wedding expert. Bernadette is an experienced facilitator known for her candid, practical approach who has trained thousands of wedding and hospitality professionals from around the world on the nuances of LGBT weddings. 14 Stories has planned more legal LGBT weddings than anyone else in the country — and was the first business to do so. Nobody knows the LGBT wedding market like The Gay Wedding Institute. Bernadette and her team have produced hundreds of gay and lesbian weddings since 2004, working with couples from 33 U.S. states and around the world.

Bernadette is the author of two wedding planning guides for same-sex couples, including the new book, The Lesbian Couple’s Guide to Wedding Planning. Bernadette holds a BS from Boston University and an MBA from New York Institute of Technology. Her expertise has been sought after by the Today Show, BBC,  the New York Times, the Washington Post, Brides magazine, NPR, CNN, Travel and Leisure and many others.  She is also the expert advice blogger on gay weddings for TheKnot’s site, as well as the Huffington Post.