In today’s digital information age, we rely on myriad resources to gather information about our health and wellness, ways to keep our families healthy and what’s happening in our local communities. Despite the many different ways we can consume news — visually, in print, online and in person — there are tried and true sources we turn to for credible information about our communities and about our health and wellness.
In fact, media outlets continue to be critical sources of information for local communities nationwide; according to the Pew Internet & American Life Project, 72 percent of adults are quite attached to following local news and information, and local newspapers are by far the source they rely on for much of the local information they need.1
While general market media has the capacity to reach broad audiences within a community, nearly half of African-American, Hispanic/Latino, Asian-American, Native American and Arab-American adults — 29 million Americans — prefer ethnic television, radio or newspapers to their mainstream counterparts.2 That means that if you’re trying to reach these audiences with information about safe sleep promotion, focusing outreach efforts on ethnic media may be the most effective strategy. Yet it’s not enough to send out general information to ethnic media; you must tailor your efforts to be effective.
Media outreach can be one of the most cost-effective ways to educate people about sudden unexpected infant death (SUID) and safe sleep. The investment you make is an investment of your time to build relationships and become a reliable resource for reporters.
This toolkit provides some guidance on how to engage ethnic media so that you can make the greatest impact through your outreach activities. The focus of the toolkit is on strategies to help you reach those communities most at risk for SUID — African-Americans; Hispanics/Latinos, particularly Puerto Ricans; and Native Americans — but the principles shared can be applied when reaching out to media in any community.3
The NCCC is funded and operates under the auspices of Cooperative Agreement #U40-MC-00145 and is supported in part by the Maternal and Child Health Bureau (Title V, Social Security Act), Health Resources and Services Administration, U.S. Department of Health and Human Services (DHHS).