A new national survey commissioned by Cultúr Health shows healthcare marketers should target insured Hispanic women ages 25-35. These young Latinas, representing a rapidly growing Hispanic demographic, are key healthcare gatekeepers – managing their own health needs and frequently those of their families, parents, grandparents and other relatives as well.
Cultúr Health, the Hispanic healthcare communications service of the vox collective and Cooney/Waters Group, commissioned the survey among employed Latina women age 25 to 35 to uncover key insights to inform healthcare communications platforms targeting Hispanics.
A key finding of the survey also shows this age group relies heavily on their families and community stakeholders for healthcare information and product recommendations, highlighting the importance of engaging all relevant influencers. Healthcare provider influence and recommendation came in a close second.
“Our survey underscores the need for healthcare marketers to specifically target Hispanic women 25-35 years of age in their communications programs,” said Fred Lake of Cooney/Waters. “Culturally relevant content is as important as ever to reach these Hispanic gatekeepers, but we also place particular emphasis on developing programs designed to increase word-of-mouth and drive family and community awareness of a product or service.”
Cultúr Health survey findings
The survey, which was administered by ORC International on behalf of Cultúr Health, was conducted online among a sample of 501 Hispanic women who are between the ages of 25 and 35 and are employed full time. Key findings related to this population’s healthcare utilization and attitudes include the following:
La comunidad (the community)
Survey findings identified which resources Latinas most commonly turn to for healthcare information and recommendations. When asked where they first go for help with a healthcare concern, the majority named a “doctor” (59 percent); however, over 30 percent named other sources, including a relative, spouse, friend or pharmacist.
Similarly, personal connections play a large role in purchasing decisions. When asked who influences their decisions to buy consumer or over-the-counter healthcare products, respondents “most frequent response was “friends, family and neighbors” (64 percent), followed by “pharmacist” (52 percent). Conversely, only 21 percent cited “advertising.”
“Reliance on social networks is a hallmark of Latin culture, with family members, neighbors and local figures of authority influencing even the most important healthcare decisions,” said Roberto Ramos, the vox collective’s president and CEO. “Cultúr Health programs use these networks to deliver messages through trusted influencers and in familiar environments.”
Health insurance and Latinas
The vast majority of women surveyed (89 percent) reported that they pay for healthcare expenses through either their own employee insurance, or their spouse/partner‟s. “Our survey results should send a strong message to marketers,” said Lake. “Increasingly, younger Hispanics are insured, and companies that target them will be well positioned now and in the future.” Indeed, a key finding of the 2010 Census was that the Hispanic population skews much younger than the white population.
English… or Español?
A key survey finding revealed that among the younger generation of Latinas, Spanish-language healthcare content is no longer required. The majority of respondents (76 percent) said that they prefer consuming this information in English, and even “culturally relevant English content” was preferred by more respondents (13 percent) than Spanish-language content (3 percent); additionally, 9 percent reported that the language didn’t matter.
Furthermore, when asked whether the news media influence their purchasing decisions for healthcare products, more than twice as many respondents (15 percent) said that they are influenced by English-language news outlets (newspapers, magazines, TV/radio stations and websites) than Spanish-language news outlets (5 percent).
“Language is only one part of a culture,” explained Ramos. “The younger, acculturated Latinos who handle their family’s health needs now consume health information in English, and then “translate” it for their older, Spanish-speaking relatives. Healthcare communication programs need to speak to both generations, through both the message and the medium.”
La prevención (prevention)
Survey results also show that Latinas take disease prevention seriously, with 64 percent of respondents reporting that they take a vitamin, multivitamin and/or food supplement daily.