Wait, does the vaccine lottery really work?

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(This idea is actually difficult to study. Thaler says he and Katie Milkman, a behavioral researcher and author at the Wharton School How to change, I once thought of doing an experiment to give some people a $3 lottery ticket to induce them to get a flu vaccine. “It would be a good thing to do this two years ago,” Thaler said. The proposal to provide people with $100 for vaccinations ran into trouble with university institutional review boards, which monitor the treatment of human subjects in scientific research. A basic ethical principle is that you should not force or bribe people to participate. )

But when it comes to the Covid vaccine, free beer does not change the numbers like irrational but fabulous prizes. “Economists think there is no such thing as free beer,” Taylor said. “Real people think that free beer is good.” But they think that even the $1 million chance is very small.

In marketing, this overestimation of distant victories is called “prospect theory”; in game terms, it is an “external reward”, something that is not inherently interesting or useful to behavior. “A perfectly rational economist from Chicago can’t figure out why people buy lottery tickets,” Munch said. “The same thing happened here. The expected value that people allocate for the potential to win $1 million is much higher than the country’s cost.”

This kind of motivational thinking doesn’t just apply to vaccines. Munch is also the co-founder of Long Game Savings, a gamification bank, and he said that “variable reward prizes,” or lottery tickets, motivate people to increase savings and improve personal finances. In one experiment, telling people to sign up for a savings account also allowed them to participate in a sweepstakes, which increased the number of people registered for savings accounts by 40%. Automatic registration—opting out rather than opt-in, as is the case with vaccine lotteries in many states—has a greater impact. If you have to opt out of the retirement savings plan, 90% of people will stay in it. Opt in, it is 50%. (This is the so-called “status quo bias.”)

Free ride to the vaccination site, maybe there is a better registration site? Of course, these are also helpful. Likewise, different types of hesitation have different solutions. When things become easier, people are more likely to do it. This is the “effort bias”. “Every effort is made to make people have no reason not to do this, and to provide reasons for doing so-except for the obvious one, that is, we don’t want to get sick,” Taylor said.

The craziest part here is that giving out millions of dollars in bonuses is actually Cheap Instead of giving $50 to each person who gets vaccinated. Of course, the benefits of behavior change are huge-the more people vaccinated, the fewer hospitalizations, and the faster the economic recovery. But even at the dollar-to-dollar level, the cost of lottery tickets is lower and the impact is greater. Ohio has spent approximately $5.6 million on its “One Million Dollar” program—a $5 million bonus and a $600,000 scholarship to provide scholarships to vaccinated youth. The lottery turned out to be a power multiplier. “If you had to buy this time on CNN, ABC, NBC, and local TV stations, how much would it cost?” Dan Tierney, press secretary to Ohio Governor Mike Devin, announced the first in the state last week The winner told me a few minutes ago. “Vax-a-Million has reported 25.8 million U.S. dollars in the winning media. It is impossible for us to buy so much publicity for only 5 million U.S. dollars.”

The same principle is also established in Manchester United. MileagePlus points will not expire-this is the change Bondar made to the plan before Covid. If you want a loyalty program to build actual loyalty, that’s great. But “we would have issued 5,000 miles of miles to each customer, and these miles will always exist until the customer uses them or they quit,” Bondar said. “This is a cost, a responsibility associated with it.” It does not encourage people to travel right now, And United Airlines will risk everyone redeeming miles at once-running on the airline. “The cost of hosting a sweepstakes is not the same as the potential cost of providing a small number of specific prizes to each customer,” Bondar said. A small prize for every MileagePlus member, or a big prize for a few people? “From an economic point of view, the latter method is a better result.”

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