Counter-Stereotypical Messaging and Partisan Cues: Moving the Needle on Vaccines in a Polarized U.S

46 Pages Posted: 25 Apr 2022 Last revised: 27 Jun 2022

See all articles by Bradley Larsen

Bradley Larsen

Stanford University - Department of Economics; National Bureau of Economic Research (NBER); eBay Research Labs

Marc Hetherington

University of North Carolina (UNC) at Chapel Hill

Steven Greene

Professor

Timothy J. Ryan

University of North Carolina (UNC) at Chapel Hill

Rahsaan Maxwell

University of North Carolina (UNC) at Chapel Hill

Steven Tadelis

University of California, Berkeley - Haas School of Business; National Bureau of Economic Research (NBER); Centre for Economic Policy Research (CEPR)

Date Written: April 2022

Abstract

We report a large-scale randomized controlled trial designed to assess whether the counter-stereotypical messaging and partisan cues can induce people to get COVID-19 vaccines. Our study involved creating a 27-second video compilation of Donald Trump’s comments about the vaccine from Fox News interviews. We presented the video to millions of U.S. YouTube users in October 2021. Results indicate that the campaign increased the number of vaccines in the average treated county by 103. Spread across 1,014 treated counties, the total effect of the campaign was an estimated increase of 104,036 vaccines. The campaign was cost-effective: with an overall budget of about $100,000, the cost to obtain an additional vaccine was about $1 or less.

Note:
Funding Information: Financial support from the Vaccine Confidence Fund.

Conflict of Interests: None to declare.

Ethical Approval: This research is approved under IRB-59690 (Stanford University)

Suggested Citation

Larsen, Bradley and Hetherington, Marc and Greene, Steven and Ryan, Timothy J. and Maxwell, Rahsaan and Tadelis, Steven, Counter-Stereotypical Messaging and Partisan Cues: Moving the Needle on Vaccines in a Polarized U.S (April 2022). NBER Working Paper No. w29896, Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=4074280

Bradley Larsen (Contact Author)

Stanford University - Department of Economics ( email )

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HOME PAGE: http://www.stanford.edu/~bjlarsen/research.html

National Bureau of Economic Research (NBER) ( email )

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Marc Hetherington

University of North Carolina (UNC) at Chapel Hill ( email )

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Steven Greene

Professor ( email )

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Timothy J. Ryan

University of North Carolina (UNC) at Chapel Hill ( email )

102 Ridge Road
Chapel Hill, NC NC 27514
United States

Rahsaan Maxwell

University of North Carolina (UNC) at Chapel Hill ( email )

102 Ridge Road
Chapel Hill, NC NC 27514
United States

Steven Tadelis

University of California, Berkeley - Haas School of Business ( email )

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Berkeley, CA 94720
United States

National Bureau of Economic Research (NBER) ( email )

1050 Massachusetts Avenue
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Centre for Economic Policy Research (CEPR) ( email )

London
United Kingdom

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