La Voz de Galicia reaches young readers with health content, including TikTok videos

By Paula Felps


Nashville, Tennessee, United States


As a respected news publisher that has covered Galicia for more than 140 years, La Voz de Galicia is a vital source of information. During the pandemic, it became an important and trusted source of health information, but there was a problem: It was only reaching an older audience.

During INMA’s Latin American News Media Summit, Uxia Rodriguez Diez, editor-in-chief, explained how it created a new way to reach young people.

“We had a huge gap for younger audiences for this range of topics like exercise, healthy eating, and our health in general,” she said. “We wanted to attract users, and we wanted to offer really quality content for our subscribers of all ages. And we wanted to use this topic which is so important in our society: health.”

La Voz de Galicia created a small lab to focus on attracting larger audiences of young people. It needed to be a different format that would have its own identity. The spinoff project was named La Voz de Salud.

La Voz de Galicia created a lab to focus on the needs of young people, eventually creating health-centered content.
La Voz de Galicia created a lab to focus on the needs of young people, eventually creating health-centered content.

A new product on new platforms

The creative process was “very different” than what it was accustomed to using, Diez said: “We created content for all formats, all social media, articles, interviews.”

Each news reporter was dedicated to one certain topic and sought out information from the best science and medical experts. The content was summarised and consolidated on multiple platforms that would reach younger audiences. Social media became particularly valuable because it allowed a two-way conversation.

“We would hear their questions, their suggestions, and we could incorporate that into the content that we were then creating. And this communication became very close with our subscribers. To have that communication with your subscribers is very important,” she said. “So changing and applying these new formats was also a very important process of this successful story.”

Stories included quick tips, lots of explainers, interviews with experts and even longer articles that were written more simply.

“It sounds like a contradiction; we’re trying to get to the new audiences who can’t spend more than 30 seconds on something [by writing] big, longer articles that aren’t so dense,” she said. “That’s something we identified that works.”

Becoming famous on TikTok

One year into it, La Voz de Salud is competing well against other outlets in the region that are trying to capture the youth market, and content is keeping users engaged, with some articles surpassing five minutes of attention. 

Lois Balado, head of social media and new narratives for La Voz de Galicia, shared how TikTok had played a significant role in La Voz de Salud’s growth. Today, it has more than 200,000 followers and is accomplishing one of the objectives identified early on: It wanted La Voz de Salud to be famous on TikTok.  

The team identified its target audience and began developing content suited for the social media platform.

“We could not have the same tone and the same context on TikTok,” he explained. Even though it is a traditional media company, “we have to understand how TikTok works and you have to be willing to play the game.”

To do that, the team created videos that were both informative and entertaining. For example, as self-diagnosis tests sold at drugstores became popular during the pandemic, the team recorded a video series to review the different types of tests. But it didn’t stop with COVID tests; it also included HIV tests, UTI tests, pregnancy tests, drug tests, gluten allergy tests, and more.

The videos were both humorous and informative, and to find out the results of the test, viewers had to follow La Voz de Salud on TikTok. The approach accomplished what La Voz de Salud had hoped for: “The result of this video series is we managed to get 1 million visitors and more than 5,000 new followers,” Balado said. “So TikTok helps people increase their number of followers.”

Lois Balado, head of social media and new narratives (left) and Uxia Rodriguez Diez, editor-in-chief (right) at La Voz de Galicia.
Lois Balado, head of social media and new narratives (left) and Uxia Rodriguez Diez, editor-in-chief (right) at La Voz de Galicia.

Social media is a strong platform to support stories that appeal to younger readers, and Diez said it helps preserve the La Voz de Galicia name for the next generation of readers. They engage on social media and go to the Web site for more information. La Voz de Salud conducts many experiments to see what works and has a six-page section in the Sunday newspaper each week to further draw in younger users.

“We didn't care how much monetisation we would get, we were just trying to find the path [to attract young people],” Diez said. “I think that generating traffic this way was a good thing because we are managing to transfer this viewership to our newspaper.”

About Paula Felps

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