Wednesday, March 4, 2009

Latino Beauty 2.0


No self-respecting Latina goes out of the house without “her face.” Beauty for Hispanics is prized – it’s right up there with family and religion. It’s no surprise then that the number of minorities seeking cosmetic surgery is on the rise, with nearly one in four procedures in 2007 performed on ethnic patients, according to the American Society of Plastic Surgeons. Hispanics led with 9 percent. Of course, the web is a key source of information on plastic surgery.

The leader in this space is Locateadoc.com, a web referral system that connects doctors with patients. It also supplies in depth knowledge on various procedures with striking before-and-after images.

I was curious to see what steps Glen Lubbert, President of Mojo Interactive and LocateADoc.com, is taking to address the needs of these potential consumers.

According to Comscore, LocateADoc.com attracts about half a million unique visitors per month with Hispanics accounting for 5.6% of that audience, are you currently addressing this audience in a unique way?
The doctors featured on our site control the description of the cases they highlight. They love to show before and after photos. Those galleries perform well across all audiences including Hispanics – everyone wants to see what was there and what they made of it.

Do any of your doctor clients highlight their specialization in ethnic populations or indicate if they offer service in Spanish?
Absolutely. Language scope is part of our basic form set-up. That’s an area where minorities can look. Some doctors market themselves as ethnic specialists, too. Many of our doctors in South Florida and Southern California have dedicated marketing efforts to these populations.

Have you considered a mirror Spanish-language site or areas of Spanish-language content to increase your Hispanic traffic?
We’ve discussed it at length and explored different ways to approach the Hispanic opportunity either within the site or with outside content like a blog. The bottom line is that we are trying to connect patients with doctors; the language is a secondary concern. We have not invested behind this area, because so far we’ve been pretty effective serving all audiences with English-language content. But, we don’t rule this out for the near future.

After speaking to some minorities interested in plastic surgery, many fear that their features would look "too white". Are there new procedures or specific training in treating ethnic populations?
The site’s before and after gallery is really a great tool to highlight specific races and ethnicities. The doctors there showcase their best work and specialization against those populations. It’s up to the patient and their selected doctor to discuss the particulars of their case to make sure they are happy with the outcome.

Ethnic populations tend to be younger, are there specific procedures like liposuction or tummy tucks that you could make more prominent to attract this audience’s interest?
Google and other search engines provide us with an indication of what procedures are of most relevance to our site users. We also look at our proprietary traffic data by age and ethnicity to prioritize content. We’re always looking to increase leads to our doctors.

For those seeking procedures abroad to save money, does LocateADoc.com provide research information on available in-country specialists?
Not presently. We have a few doctors subscribed in Mexico, but those directories are not as extensive as the info in the U.S. and Canada. The Mexican doctors subscribed to our service are right along the Texas border for patients in the U.S. looking for a cheaper alternative.

Money is an important factor. Hispanic-Americans are getting wealthier and indulging in life’s luxuries. Are there unique financial plans and payment plans to draw in middle-class customers? Is your company involved in this area?
Yes, our pages on financing are very popular. GE Money/Care Credit is our partner for potential patients to customize a loan or installment plan that fits their budget. It makes elective surgery more affordable.

How is the current financial crisis impacting your business?
There are fewer people looking to do elective procedures, overall. Google’s traffic is down for search terms related to cosmetic surgery, but there are still people looking. Instead of choosing more involved procedures, they are choosing minimally invasive ones like Botox treatments or skin resurfacing.

How do you think popular culture and the entertainment industry are impacting the cosmetic surgery industry?
Tremendously. Several television shows like The Swan, Nip/Tuck, and Dr. 90210 create a lot more buzz and drive traffic online when they air.

How has the web changed the cosmetic surgery industry?
Patients are more informed and have better expectations of what they can have done. Anytime you are making more realistic expectations, you are winning.

1 comment:

  1. Thank you for sharing your experience and success. I hope that everyone who will read your entry will pursue their work also. Likewise to the Latino Business they have to be included on the ranking of paginas amarilla so that their business will be successful and more services they need to provide.

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