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Speaking of Health: Assessing Health Communication Strategies for Diverse Populations
appear to be available in many geographic areas of the country where high concentrations of these populations reside (National Heart, Lung, and Blood Institute, 2000).
Different age, gender, and income groups also tend to favor different media, so it is prudent when targeting by these characteristics to investigate which media are best for each group. For example, a smoking campaign in Vermont selectively placed television spots on one or another program based on formative research the developers conducted separately with each target group (e.g., young girls and young boys) (Worden et al., 1996). Similarly, a communication campaign may use billboards and store displays to reach low-income, inner-city dwellers, and newspapers to reach suburban households. Efforts to reach gay, lesbian, and bisexual populations often supplement mainstream media with publications geared to those groups.
The Internet now offers an additional channel of communication to promote campaign messages and goals in settings that are accessible to some consumers (home, library, cafes) during times that are convenient for them. Whereas national programs traditionally have used toll-free telephone lines to offer resources and publications, support or advice, information, program and policy updates, and, in some cases, referrals, communication campaigns now can offer these information services 24 hours a day, 7 days a week through the Internet. All ongoing campaigns in the current review have developed their own Web sites, most of which offer not only campaign information and resources, but provide links to other sources of information and related sites. Some campaigns offer sites in multiple languages. Issues of access, knowledge, skills, and use related to Internet health communications across diverse income, education, age, and ethnic groups are further explored in Chapter 6 of this volume.
The Internet has also afforded campaigns the opportunity to tailor communications1 to individuals through regular e-mail up-
Tailored messages are used most often in print channels, but also can be applied to CD-ROMs, the Internet, telephone counseling, and video kiosks (Kreuter et al., 2000b).