Getting people to change their minds about getting the COVID vaccine is vital to keeping the pandemic in check. But browbeating and shaming isn't going to do the job. This isn't exactly news. We've likely all experienced this influencer fail in our own lives. I know my Mom didn't suddenly decide to let me go to that party where T-Bird Julian might make an appearance because I got upset.
New research from Kaiser Family Foundation uncovered three levers that successfully motivate some people to change their minds about getting vaccinated. (Read the entire report -- it's fascinating.)
Healthcare marketers, public health officials and "private citizens" can use these tactics to influence unvaccinated folks to reconsider. Some people won't be moved even by these empathetic tactics, but getting even a small percentage of the unvaccinated to get the shot(s) is important.
3 ways to encourage people to get vaccinated
Based on a survey of people who changed their minds about getting the shot(s), the KFF survey identified these three strategies for influencing vaccination:
- Seeing that millions have been safely vaccinated. For people who were concerned about side effects, stories about good health post-vaccine can be influential.
- Hearing from vaccinated people they trust. This could be a medical professional, but more often is a friend or relative. If you've gotten the shot, talk about your experience (see #1) and why you chose to get the jab.
- Realizing that vaccination makes more things possible. We all want our lives to be easier and more fun, and we know FOMO is real. This one's tricky, because it's easy to come off as gloating. Maybe don't talk about your fabulous trip to San Lucia and instead relate the experience of getting to visit family and friends.
Use these insights to drive your vaccine outreach and public service projects.