Simply translating a message from English to Spanish is not enough to reach Latino patients. Understanding their culture is crucial and worth your time. Here’s why.
Currently, more than 57 million Hispanics live in the U.S. The population is expected to grow 167 percent between 2010 and 2050, making Latinos the fastest growing ethnic group in the country. What’s more, Hispanics spent 62 percent more on healthcare in 2015 than in 2010, nearly double the spending growth of the overall population.
To reach Hispanics in your area, consider the following:
- Train your staff. Hispanics want personal, respectful and culturally sensitive healthcare in an unhurried environment. Get your staff on board by inviting Hispanic community leaders to present culturally relevant instruction.
Here’s one example of a cultural difference. In Latin America, a family doctor may become a family friend, attending their dinner parties and celebrations. In the U.S., tight schedules lead to rushed appointments and impersonal interaction. Win over your Latino patients by taking your time and getting to know them.
- Make the most of mobile. Hispanics like to watch videos and download pictures, mostly on their mobile phones. Optimize your website content and marketing collateral for mobile and capture their attention with relatable visuals.
- Bring a bilingual on board. Many Latinos seek care at bilingual clinics where they know someone will understand them. Without a translator, Hispanic patients may not communicate effectively, leading to misdiagnosis, lack of compliance, and unneeded assessments. Advertise your practice as bilingual once you hire a Spanish-speaker.
- Think like an emergency clinic. The Advisory Board’s Primary Care Consumer Choice Survey found that Hispanics prefer 24/7 walk-in availability, no-cost visits, and a wait time of fewer than 30 minutes. That may not be realistic for all practices, but if you’re a primary care physician, look at offering same-day appointments, short wait times, and low-cost payment plans.
- Educate year-round. You may be tempted to roll out campaigns during open enrollment or Hispanic Heritage Month. But a doctor’s office or hospital that invests time and effort throughout the year will earn loyalty. And that’s your goal — to develop deep, trusting relationships with your Latino patients for years to come.
Bottom line? Be intentional with your healthcare marketing strategies to Hispanics and don’t hesitate to ask us for help.