We hope you, your family and coworkers are well. This blog is second in a series of tips aimed to strengthen healthcare organizations in practical ways right now.
TIP: Communicate to non-English-speaking audiences
“We’re all in this together.” That statement has become a standard throughout the COVID-19 pandemic, yet some populations in the U.S. aren’t getting that message. Approximately 9% of the U.S. population has limited English proficiency. But check out most healthcare websites, and you’ll find few or no COVID-19 updates in anything but English.
To help your updates and messaging reach all audiences in your community, consider these tips to reach non-English-speakers:
- Partner with community groups in your area that non-English-speakers rely on for updates. Make sure these groups have the tools they need to communicate with their audiences.
- Extend your media relations efforts to include Spanish-language media outlets, especially TV. Many Spanish-speakers rely on Spanish-language TV channels for news and updates.
- From a messaging standpoint, focus on family. Latinos, Asian Americans, and African Americans are all more likely to live in multi-generational homes, and family or duty to family is a huge motivator.
- When possible, push updates via healthcare apps or texting programs.
- If you have sub-sites or pages in Spanish or other languages, or pages about translation services, provide COVID-19 updates there as regularly and thoroughly as on English-language sites and pages.
- Use social media — provide major updates in English, Spanish, and other languages. This will show your dedication to all audiences and help bilingual audiences share messages with non-English-speakers in their networks.
- Implement messages tailored to your various audiences through website personalization strategies. Based on your organization’s resources or others in your region, personalization could allow you to route a user to contact information or partners based on the user’s particular language.
Gracias, merci, danke — no matter what language you say it in, thank you for the invaluable healthcare expertise you’re providing to your consumers during this time. Are there any top-of-mind technology-related topics you’d like for us to provide insight on? We welcome your input. Please let us know.