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Liz Foote Maui Oct 20, 2020 8:18 am

Last month I participated in the Pacific Northwest Social Marketing Association’s Fall Forum, “Using Research to Help Tackle COVID-19 Behaviors Among Less Receptive Audiences,” where we had the opportunity to learn about the formative research behind the State of Washington’s COVID-19 response. (PNSMA members will have access to the recording.) Those who were carrying out the research and developing the campaigns shared the State’s partner toolkit, which has a lot of great resources, such as a guide for recommended language and messaging strategies to ensure consistent, compassionate communications, and graphics and videos from the “COVID-19 Loves Excuses” media campaign. This campaign was developed for the priority audiences of 1) individuals identifying as politically conservative and 2) young people, since research has shown these groups are less compliant with the public health recommendations.

Meanwhile in Washington DC, according to this Politico reporting, $300 million was spent on this campaign to “raise awareness” and “inspire hope,” which can only be described (charitably) as chaotic. Definitely an interesting contrast to be made!