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America Now: Mental Health

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America Now: Mental Health
Mental health is an important issue for Americans – now more than ever. Our 2021 Roundtable Presentation, America Now, offers insights that help explain how Americans are feeling about mental health and what brands can do to support them. Read on to learn more.

May 6, 2022
Sudipti Kumar – Associate Director

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Mental health issues such as anxiety and depression are at an all-time high in the United States. Increased political polarization, heightened racial tension, and the ongoing pandemic are just some of the reasons that contribute to a lower overall sense of well-being for Americans. In a recent survey we conducted, we found that Gen Z Americans are the least likely to be satisfied with their physical and non-physical well-being, including their mental and emotional health.

In addition to the factors affecting all Americans, social media likely has an outsized impact on Gen Z’s mental health. Our survey data reveals that Gen Z is the least likely to feel confident in themselves, while also being the most likely to compare themselves to others on social media. And then there’s recent research, including Instagram’s internal research, that highlights the potentially negative impact of social media on younger people(1).

Something else that likely adds to young Americans’ struggles with mental health is the belief that they can’t show their emotions.  In fact, almost 50% of Gen Z Americans agreed with the statement: “I can’t show my emotions because society tells me I need to be strong”, compared to only 22% of Boomers.

But here’s the good news—despite their struggles, Gen Z’ers want to improve their mental health. When asked where they are most focused with respect to their health and wellness, over 40% of the segment chose improving their mood/mental health. This suggests improving mental health is a top priority for Gen Z, even higher than improving their diet and increasing physical activity.

Now you may be thinking, how can my brand help improve people’s mental health? It turns out there are several ways you can play a positive role and connect with consumers in the process.

  1. Support and amplify influencers sharing openly about their mental health struggles
    Many young Americans (~80%, in fact!) think it’s admirable when a public figure shares about their mental health struggles. Brands that show support for these individuals and amplify their voices will likely capture consumer attention and create affinity. Consider Cartoon Network’s shout out to Naomi Osaka and Simone Biles, and ESPN highlighting the many athletes that have spoken up about their mental health struggles including Michael Phelps and Demar Derozan.
                 

  2. Provide supportive resources
    Many brands are creating resources that consumers can use to improve their mental health. For example:
    – Athleta, Simone Biles’ sponsor, launched a new platform dedicated to women’s wellness called AthletaWell just days after Biles withdrew from the 2021 Olympic team finals for mental health reasons.
    – Maybelline New York launched the “Brave Together” program, an online platform to open the conversation around anxiety and depression.
    – JanSport has developed a fully integrated brand effort called #Lightentheload to connect Generation Z with resources to tackle the mental health challenges they face.

  3. Donate to causes
    There are important causes that aim to improve the mental health of young Americans. Stella and Bow donates proceeds of their Rainbow Connection necklace to a charity focused on helping people with depression and addiction. And Philosophy has donated over five million dollars to mental health initiatives via their hope & grace initiative. Consider donating to one or more mental health causes and then use social media and other marketing efforts to let your market know they too can have a positive impact by donating.

Contact us at the form below to learn more about how you can gain access to these diverse consumer insights and much more in our Cultural Intelligence Platform.

Sources:

(1) NPR, “Instagram Worsens Body Image Issues And Erodes Mental Health”, https://www.npr.org/2021/09/26/1040756541/instagram-worsens-body-image-issues-and-erodes-mental-health

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Sudipti Kumar
Associate Director

Sudipti is an Associate Director on Collage Group’s Product and Content team. She is a graduate from NYU’s Stern School of Business where she studied finance and marketing, and Columbia University’s School of International and Public Affairs where she received her Masters in Public Administration. In her spare time, Sudipti enjoys reading, cooking, and learning to crochet.

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Health and Wellness Across Gender

Health and Wellness Across Gender
Men and Women have unique perspectives, needs, and experiences related to health insurance and health care. Keep reading for key insights, and a downloadable deck to help your brand or organization better connect with these segments.
 

Americans are increasingly embracing a consumer mindset when it comes to healthcare. Men and Women alike are shopping around, comparing prices, and seeking more information than they have in the past. They are doing this because heath care has changed – it has expanded choice and shifted costs.

To win in this constantly evolving space, brands and organizations need to understand men and women’s unique health-related perspectives and how they impact their engagement with health insurers and providers.

Collage Group’s 2021/2022 Health & Wellness Study leverages data captured from more than 3,500 Americans to help brands understand how health-related attitudes and behaviors differ by gender. Our research reveals how an emerging consumer mindset impacts Americans engagement with both the health insurance and health care provider space. We explore barriers to insurance coverage, drivers and barriers to trust and satisfaction, provider preferences, receptivity to provider advice, and more.

Download the attached presentation and take a look at a few key insights and implications below:

#1: Affordability is the Top Barrier for the Uninsured

The high cost of healthcare for Americans is not news, we know that men and women both face increasing costs and are seeking ways to offset them. But for women, costs are even higher earlier in life, thanks to increased incidence of many chronic conditions, as well as the healthcare costs associated with their reproductive years. This leads many to cut costs by forgoing care or insurance altogether – lack of affordability is the top reason why uninsured women don’t have coverage.

Affordability is also the top reason why men don’t have insurance, albeit at a much lower rate. But what’s interesting – and actionable for healthcare brands – is that men are twice as likely as women to say that they don’t have health insurance because they don’t know how to purchase it. They’re also twice as likely to say they don’t have health insurance because they don’t need it.

Best Practice: The Nevada Health Link took a creative approach to attracting the cost conscious uninsured. Their creative campaign titled, “You Can’t Afford to Not Be Insured”, highlighted the savings insurance provides when faced with a variety of common ailments compared to paying out of pocket – presenting insurance as a relative value.

#2: Men Seek Insurance Partnership Through Communication

Communication with their health insurance provider is particularly important for New Wave Men – those who are 26-41 in this study. When asked what insurance companies might do to be seen as a partner rather than a barrier in improving health, New Wave men were significantly more likely to say “If I had a person at the insurance company I could easily communicate with.”

New Wave Men Seek Insurance Partnership

Best Practice: The state of Minnesota health insurance exchange, or “MNSure”, recently ran a campaign highlighting the communication support provided to those seeking to enroll. MNSure utilizes a network of “assisters” who provide 1:1 support on social channels, year round. The ads seen below were designed to be shared by the assister network across social channels, so individuals could reach out to the assisters directly to receive support, or through the provided contact information.

MNSure Highlights Certified Navigators

#3: New Wave Women Have Endured Negative Healthcare Services, Leading to Lower Healthcare Satisfaction  

Of all segments we looked at in this study, younger women (26-41yrs old) have the lowest level of satisfaction of their health care providers. And the unfortunate truth behind this number seems to be that they have simply had more negative experiences with health care providers in the past. In fact, younger women are significantly more likely to have experienced literally every negative experience we asked about – from doctors rushing through visits and not listening to them, to lifestyle judgment and pressured decision making.

The silver lining of the negative experiences women have had in the past is that they now know what they want from health care providers. Women want personalized care, from doctors who understand their unique healthcare needs, and they want it delivered in a way that is efficient and effective.

Young women most likely to receive bad service

Best Practice: Recognizing that the needs of women weren’t being completely met through traditional providers, Maven Health set up gap-filling coverage tailored to the needs of women. Maven provides detailed information from the comfort of an app, but also personal concierge service and virtual visits with regular providers to ensure women get the personal support they want.

Health care preferences

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Health Care Across Generations

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Health Care Across Generations
Each generation approaches the patient journey from a unique perspective. Keep reading for key insights and a  downloadable deck on generational differences in health-related attitudes and behaviors and the emerging consumer mindset.
 

Health and wellness are top of mind for consumers. With healthcare costs higher than ever, Americans are acting more and more as “consumers” when it comes to their healthcare and health insurance. They want to get bang for their buck by being more choosy and “shopping around.” As a result, they’re more sensitive to price and  think even more critically about their symptoms before deciding it’s necessary to seek care. And when they do, many are turning to cost-effective options like virtual care.

The rise of consumerism in healthcare means you’ve got to be thinking about all the levers that traditional service-oriented businesses have leaned on to win consumers. Highlighting and providing excellent service and competitive cost are two that many in healthcare still struggle with. To win consumers and provide them optimal care, you must understand how these factors are constantly shifting consumers’ expectations, needs, and desires.

Collage Group’s 2021/2022 Health & Wellness Study covers generational differences in healthcare-related attitudes and behaviors. Our research reveals how the emerging consumer mindset affects each generation’s attitudes and behaviors in healthcare.

Download the attached presentation and take a look at a few key insights and implications below:

#1: Gen X and Boomers emphasize doctors’ qualitative attributes, so provide bios that allow each individual doctor’s strengths to shine and focus your marketing efforts on how your organization stands out with excellent service. Your organization has exceptional talent, so make sure you get the credit for it!

What is important when considering a doctor

#2: Gen Z and Millennials emphasize their doctor’s identity attributes, so add filters (gender, race, etc.) to provider search tools to allow them to refine their search for a doctor they value. It’s important to make it easy for them to find a doctor they feel comfortable with. Finding a doctor with shared identity can also help them to feel less anxious.

Doctor preference

Executional Example

Indianapolis-based Community Health Network differentiates their medical facilities by highlighting the exceptional care they offer. Their creative showcases their patient-centric values and community-driven approach (the audio track in the ad was even performed by Community Health Network employees!). The ad affirms the network’s focus on service by communicating the diversity in their providers, showing that every patient can find a doctor who will listen to and understand their unique needs.

To bolster the themes in their creative campaign, Community Health Network has a robust provider search tool on their website. Each doctor has a short bio and an introduction video so that patients can evaluate them on a more personal level beyond their credentials. They can hear their voice and see their smile—as well as learn about their passions in healthcare and their approach as a physician. The website’s search tool allows patients to filter by different attributes like gender and language. The site even has a section for reviews.

Community Health Network screenshot

#3: Younger Americans have a more self-sufficient health perspective. They also say that feeling worried or anxious is the top reason they avoid care. Help them feel more empowered in their health by giving them some control over their health journey. This will help grow their trust and inspire confidence in themselves.

Executional Example

Virtual care company LetsGetChecked was founded in 2015 with the goal of empowering people to manage their own health from home. They provide at-home sample collection kits which can be sent to healthcare facilities for results. They also provide telehealth services. This innovative healthcare approach caters to the unique needs of younger Americans who want control and self-sufficiency in their health journey, and simultaneously are anxious and turned-off by conventional healthcare services.

Contact us at the form below to learn more about how you can gain access to these diverse consumer insights and much more in our cultural intelligence platform.

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Health and Wellness Across Sexual Identities

Health and Wellness Across Sexual Identities
LGBTQ+ Americans have unique perspectives, needs, and experiences related to healthcare that brands must understand. Keep reading for key insights, a downloadable deck, and webinar replay that will help your brand or organization better understand and connect with these segments.

Read on and fill out the form for an excerpt from our Health and Wellness Across Sexual Identities presentation.

Rapid changes in societal norms over the past several years are continuing to pave the way for a more inclusive and welcoming America. The greater acceptance many young people now experience affords an opportunity to openly identify as LGBTQ+ with less risk for social stigma and discrimination. As a result, we continue to see growth in the number of Americans who identify as LGBTQ+. To win in this constantly evolving space, brands and organizations must understand LGBTQ+ Americans’ unique health-related needs and how these impact their engagement with health insurers and providers.

Collage Group’s 2021/2022 Health & Wellness Study leverages data captured from more than 3,500 Americans to help brands understand how health-related attitudes and behaviors differ by sexual identity. Our research reveals how an emerging consumer mindset impacts Americans engagement with both the health insurance and health care provider space. We explore barriers to insurance coverage, drivers and barriers to trust and satisfaction, provider preferences, receptivity to provider advice, and more.

Take a look at a few key insights and implications:

#1. The LGBTQ+ population is less likely to have health insurance than others. Affordability issues and distrust in health care have led to lower insurance rates among LGBTQ+ Americans. Position yourself as a partner in their health journey and prove yourself trustworthy by offering targeted services to address their unique needs

LGBTQ+ are more likely to be uninsured

Best Practice: Blue Cross Blue Shield of Rhode Island is addressing LGBTQ+ Americans’ barriers to coverage with an easy to find resource page on their website to connect patients with providers that are inclusive and LGBTQ+ friendly.

BCSBRI has its own LGBTQ+ safe zones

#2: LGBTQ+ Americans are less satisfied with their current medical care in part because of past negative experiences. More poor interactions with health care providers leads to avoiding care in the future and, ultimately, poorer health outcomes (see the full presentation for supporting data and details on the LGBTQ+ experience with health care).

LGBTQ+ are more likely to have negative doctor experiences

#3: LGBTQ+ Americans want affirming care that is sensitive to their unique needs, but they don’t need to see LGBTQ+ providers to get that level of care. Make sure your providers and staff are trained in culturally competent care for the LGBTQ+ community.

OutCare provides Online Culturally Competent Training

Best Practice: In addition to providing various resources – like an LGBTQ+ friendly provider list – OutCare offers online training to help health care providers develop cultural competency for the segment. Trainings like these are a great way to increase the quality of care provided to LGBTQ+ individuals.

OutCare provides Online Culturally Competent Training

Contact us at the form below to learn more about how you can gain access to these diverse consumer insights and much more in our cultural intelligence platform.

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Healthcare Across Race and Ethnicity

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Health & Wellness Across Race & Ethnicity
Multicultural Americans have unique perspectives, needs, and experiences related to health care that brands must understand. Keep reading for key insights that will help your brand or organization better understand and connect with these segments.

A rapidly growing multicultural population and the emerging consumer mindset are changing consumer demands on healthcare. To win in this constantly evolving space, brands and organizations need to understand multicultural Americans’ unique health-related perspectives, needs, and experiences and how these impact their engagement with health insurers and providers.

Download the attached presentation and take a look at a few key insights and implications below:

Collage Group’s 2021/2022 Health & Wellness Study leverages data captured from more than 3,500 Americans to help brands understand how health-related attitudes and behaviors differ by racial and ethnic segments. Our research reveals how the emerging consumer mindset affects Americans in both the health insurance and health care provider space. We explore barriers to insurance coverage, drivers of and barriers to trust and satisfaction, provider preferences, willingness to follow provider advice, and more.

Here are a few key insights and implications:

#1. There is room for growth in overall satisfaction with medical care across all multicultural segments and age groups. To improve satisfaction, focus on building trust and humanizing the health care experience.

Over half of Americans are satisfied with their health care

Pfizer’s ad (shown below) seeks to gain trust with Black Americans by first acknowledging that the segment’s distrust in the health care system is understandable given the discrimination and injustice they have experienced. The spot then notes that this lack of participation means Black Americans may not be getting the best care they could, and that greater representation in research will ultimately lead to better care. It ends with a call to action to have more Black Americans participate in clinical trials.

#2: Multicultural consumers want doctors who take the time to understand their cultural backgrounds. Prioritize culturally competent care through services in multiple languages, training on different cultural norms and preferences, and ensuring there is staff who look like them.

Multicultural segments more likely to value doctors

Kaiser Permanente has made a name for itself as a leader in culturally competent care. Marketing messaging highlights the translation services the system offers in over 100 languages, the fact that over 60% of their staff are multicultural, and the training  staff receive on culturally appropriate etiquette and care.

Kaiser Permanente Prioritizes Culturally Competent Care

#3: Family is important to Multicultural consumers during their health care journey, especially Hispanic Americans. Make sure that the health care process is focused on both the patient themselves and the family members.

3 in 10 have a friend or family member with them when receiving care

Marketers should highlight the ways their organizations support family engagement. Below are several things that can signal your organization is family-friendly and keen to provide support beyond the patient.

Health Care Providers Catering to Family Need

Contact us at the form below to learn more about how you can gain access to these diverse consumer insights and much more in our cultural intelligence platform.

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Start 2022 Strong with New Diverse Consumer Insights

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Start 2022 Strong with New Diverse Consumer Insights

More than 200 of America’s top brands have access to the deep cultural insights needed to engage America’s diverse consumers. Do you? Here’s an overview of the new reports we’re releasing in Q1 2022 and beyond that you’re missing out on. Contact us today for access:

​Health and Wellness

Explore how consumer attitudes and behaviors toward health and wellness are evolving across diverse segments, including barriers to access, provider preferences, and more.

Small Business Owners in America

Learn how to connect authentically with America’s small business owners. This research gives you a look into the attitudes and behaviors of culturally diverse owners and includes action items to integrate marketing best practices for effective engagement.

LGBTQ+ Terminology​

Engage the LGBTQ+ community with a deeper understanding of changing expectations and trends in self-identification. Understand the meaning and preferences for terms like non-binary and intersex, and the nuances of personal pronouns. Dig deeper into the labels and/or identifiers each segment prefers and double-click by age, race/ethnicity, and gender when relevant.

CultureRate:Brand & Ad

Assess the Cultural Fluency of your brand and ads and explore how you stack up vs. your competitors. Members of our consumer research platforms have access to a dedicated report on a brand and ad.

New Launches in 2022

Also rolling out in 2022 are the launch of a new program and add-on module. More details on timing and content of these releases are coming soon.

Parents & Kids

In 2022, Collage Group will continue to expand our research into new territories. This includes a new research program exploring cultural variations in the attitudes and behaviors of parents and kids.

Medical Conditions

This add-on module for members who have a current demographic subscription will cover health care-related attitudes and behaviors of consumers with various medical diagnoses. The conditions and intersections covered will be released in February, but will likely include conditions such as chronic pain, depression, diabetes and more across race and ethnicity.  

Collage Group members have access to more than 10 years of consumer insights in over 300 studies with new data unveiled 3-to-4 times a month. As a member, you also get to the full reports recently released, including: Holidays & Occasions, Passion Points, Cultural Traits, Digital & Media and Category Essentials. Contact us to learn more about membership. 

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Close 2021 Strong with New Diverse Consumer Insights

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Close 2021 Strong with New Diverse Consumer Insights

More than 200 of America’s top brands have access to the deep cultural insights needed to engage America’s diverse consumers. Do you? Here’s a sampling of our latest reports that you’re missing out on. Contact us today for access:

America Now

Transform change into opportunity. This deep dive report explores changes to diverse consumer attitudes at a key transformational moment. Learn where there is no going back and build strategy for the future.

​Health and Wellness

Explore how consumer attitudes and behaviors toward health and wellness are evolving across diverse segments, from conceptions and wellbeing, barriers to access, provider preferences, and more.

Digital Media Consumption

Discover how Americans are consuming media / social media content and the evolution across consumer segments. These reports explore use of streaming services, non-English languages, and much more. Learn more in samples of our Digital & Media reports on race/ethnicity, generation and sexuality.

CultureRate:Brand & Ad

Assess the Cultural Fluency of your brand and ads and explore how you stack up vs. your competitors. Members of our consumer research platforms have access to a dedicated report on a brand or ad, which includes recommendations for a path forward to improve the rankings.

Category Essentials

Access semi-annual reports to keep up with America’s diverse consumers across race/ethnicity, age, sexuality and gender. These reports evaluate consumer attitudes and behaviors across 12 different consumer goods industries. New reports will be released that dig deeper into apparel and travel and hospitality.

Collage Group members have access to more than 10 years of consumer insights in over 300 studies with new data unveiled 3-to-4 times a month. As a member, you also get to the full reports recently released, including: Holidays & Occasions, Passion Points, and Cultural Traits. Contact us to learn more about membership. 

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Case Study By Industry | Health Insurance

Case Study | Health Insurance

Activating Hispanic and Black Consumers

CHALLENGE

A prominent health insurance company consistently struggled to enroll members of the multicultural population in a specific state.

Open Enrollment represented the perfect opportunity to reach Hispanic and Black consumers, traditionally among the most underserved communities in the state.
The company’s primary goal was to enroll more Hispanic and Black consumers in three key markets. The secondary objectives were to understand the barriers to entry in health care for these segments and utilize grassroots marketing to grow awareness and trust among these segments.

SOLUTION

Collage Group quickly delivered relevant members-only insights to get the marketing team up to speed on multicultural strategies.

1.Syndicated research uncovered how these consumers viewed the U.S. health care system, including areas of skepticism and understanding  of how the provider/payer system works. 

2.Collage Group surfaced data regarding how key health care decisions are made, such as how family plays a key role in the decision-making process for both segments and how important Spanish-language information is to Hispanics.

3.Partnering with our Client Services team, the member developed strategies using some of our recommendations for finding and activating multicultural influencers, following multicultural consumers’ digital leads, and activating locally.

RESULT

Multicultural enrollment was a key objective in the campaign. In the two years since the company began this initiative, they reached their target goals for both Hispanic and Black enrollment. The initial results that got them there included:

• Renewed strategic focus on the right channels to reach Hispanic and Black consumers – and the content to highlight in campaigns (i.e. mobile unit trucks, more mobile campaigns, partnering with local influencers).

• More strategic and enhanced local activation campaigns designed to reach consumers where they are.

• Marketing budget pivots: Due to insights gathered, the company altered their D&I marketing budget to invest more in mobile marketing campaigns and local promotions.

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Case Study By Industry | Health Care Retailer

Case Study | Health Care Retailer

The Journey to Cultural Fluency:
Using Culture to Connect Effectively and Efficiently Across Consumer Segments

CHALLENGE

Like many businesses, a national health care retailer recognized the dynamic transformation underway in American culture.

In 2020, the combination of the social justice movement and the COVID pandemic hit home especially hard, with so many of the retailer’s staff on the front lines. Across the enterprise, they took action, reflecting a deeper commitment to honoring America’s culturally diverse voices.

For the health care retailer’s Enterprise Insights team, they recognized a one-time investment in a research project or consultant was not enough. As the needs of the organization and of the consumer change too quickly, the company needed the support of a long-term partner.

Objectives:

• Align around best practice multicultural research standards and ensure Culturally Fluent research is practiced across the enterprise.

• Socialize culturally sensitive approaches to multicultural insights, to enable diversity, inclusion and marketing performance.

• Stay nimble to the organization’s emerging educational needs, and quickly hone-in on high-impact research opportunities as they emerge.

SOLUTION

Collage Group designed a partnership solution for the health care retailer, leveraging a suite of research products and nimble service models, which included:

  1.  Access to the Multicultural consumer research platform, for regular outputs of research on trends across culture into Hispanic, Black and Asian consumers.
  2.  Expert support via “SME-Hours”, which includes access to in-cultural subject matter experts, seasoned marketing consultants, and research professionals to address ad hoc needs.
  3.  Custom Research & Consulting Credits applied to “Black American Learning Series” for the staff, to educate and elevate the experience and voices of Black Americans specifically.

RESULT

Insights gleaned from the health care retailer's partnership with Collage are now applied across the company, including in events sponsored by Chief Diversity Officer and Senior Vice President of Workforce Strategies, its diversity team, in ads produced by its marketing team, and via in-store initiatives to ensure the company's customers and staff are treated fairly and equitably.

Through the approach, the health care retailer made progress in five areas. These included:

1. Achievement of a higher return from the partnership than from comparable alternatives.

Collage Group enables the health care retailer to stay tapped into needed, timely cultural insights into all major segments. According to the company, the partnership far exceeds returns from hiring a temporary in-house research lead or from returns on a single custom project (which might be perceived as one-time “check-the-box” approach that ultimately implies little commitment to lasting change).

2.  Improvement in advertising effectiveness.

The healthcare retailer applied a CultureRate:Ad report included as part of membership to evaluate the Cultural Fluency Quotient of a recent Spanish-language pharmacy execution. According to the company, The CultureRate:Ad reporting provided deep insight into the drivers of Cultural Fluency across racial/ethnic groups. The learnings helped the retailer understand cultural nuances so they could take the action needed to produce more inclusive advertising.

3.  Increased empathy with Black consumers across the entire Marketing organization.

The health care retailer hosted a Black Immersion Day with a variety of speakers to more deeply educate and energize their team. The Session featured Zekeera Belton, a Collage Group executive and Black Consumer SME, to both keynote and close the session. Zekeera layered in her personal experience to bring to life Collage Group’s rigorous data on the Cultural Traits of Black Consumers. As the main event during Immersion Day, the company reports that Zekeera’s presentation also motivated deeper use of insights recently provided by Collage Group’s Custom Solutions team a few weeks prior to the event.

4.  Update to all internal research methodologies and processes to ensure Cultural Fluency.

With over 10+ years of experience conducting research among diverse and hard-to-reach consumer segments, Collage Group has developed a robust array of Multicultural Research Best Practices. In close collaboration with the health care retailer, Collage Group SMEs outlined and presented key learnings in conducting Multicultural Research to research groups across the enterprise. The company has adopted learnings from these presentations and continues to push thought-leadership in emerging research methodologies and best practices to ensure culturally inclusive learnings across all engagements.

5.  Improvement in customer experience in retail operations. the company indicates that their leaders are now talking more regularly with colleagues in stores through a “colleague advisor panel” that connects leadership to frontline staff.

The company has now elevated a discussion of discrimination, where in-store staff see it most, and how issues appear in call-center operations. A new company “Bill of Rights” will now be posted in stores on how staff and customers should be treated.

Measuring The Cultural Fluency of Healthcare Brands

Measuring the Cultural Fluency of Health Care Brands

Our recent CultureRate:Brand study tested the cultural resonance of 18 healthcare brands.

One of our key findings from this study is that many health insurance companies fail to resonate with multiple cultural segments. In fact, of the six health insurance brands we tested, five did not resonate with any of the four core segments (Hispanic, Black, Asian, and non-Hispanic White).

Fill out the form to download an excerpt of the study.

This struggle to resonate is likely because people don’t necessarily feel a personal connection to health insurance brands the way they do with other categories such as food. In addition, since CultureRate:Brand studies survey the New Wave of consumers (ages 18-39), these survey respondents are young and have less experience with health insurance. Many of them, if they are under the age of 26, may still be on their parents’ plan. Or these young consumers may not have health insurance at all because they feel healthy and invincible. They haven’t had an opportunity to build trust and relationships with providers over time. Health insurance brands aren’t alone here. In previous CultureRate:Brand research in the Telecom and financial services spaces we also saw a struggle to resonate. This doesn’t mean it’s impossible to capture people, but rather that you need to be thoughtful and strategic about how you move forward.

So how can healthcare brands build connections and increase resonance with New Wavers across cultural segments?

The best place to start is looking at your B-CFQ component scores to see where the opportunities to improve are easiest to achieve. Take, for example, Alka-Seltzer. Alka-Seltzer received a cultural reach score of 1.

 As you can see in the chart below, White and acculturated Hispanic consumers ranked Alka-Seltzer around average for most of the components, while Black and Asian consumers rated the brand below average for most of the six components.

On the other hand, bicultural and unacculturated Hispanic consumers rated Alka-Seltzer strongly above average across the board. Bayer, which owns Alka-Seltzer, has been focused on marketing Alka-Seltzer in Latin American countries since at least the 1980s. In the late 1990s, Bayer partnered with a Hispanic advertising agency to develop a culturally specific campaign, in the Spanish language, which included TV, radio, and print ads to demonstrate the relevance and fit of the brand. Clearly this strategy has worked! Alka-Seltzer has gained a sort of cult following among Hispanic families as a cure for all types of ailments.  People share memes in Spanish showing, for example, a doctor prescribing a patient who is sick in bed to drink a soda with Alka-Seltzer.

One component where Alka-Seltzer did really well – around or above average with five out of the six segments – is strong brand trust. Even if it’s not a consumer’s preferred brand, or they don’t have great memories associated with it, they still trust that it’s a reliable product that will do its job if they need it. These high scores are good news for the brand, which can use these positives to offset some of the areas where they performed less well, such as brand values or willingness to be a brand advocate. These findings reveal opportunities and some next steps to further connect the brand with these segments: focus on what they value and what they need from insurance policies in the messaging, partner with relevant influencers to increase trust and brand-buzz, and then give them a reason to talk about the brand.

 

Are you interested in seeing this study applied to your brand? Fill out the form below to speak with a Collage Group representative.

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